Living within his thirty-first year of existence, Willie Johnson smothered an instrumental he was working on with capering and swooning murmurs of vocal expression – words without words. Not to lessen the strength of this sound, but if we were all without word, then this would be our attempted mating call; that fight to deter the crippling loneliness all too often felt, that cry for touch, and that desire for one of similar workings.
Do you imagine Blind Willie on a trusted rocking-chair, crowded by mist, not men, and that humbled glow of candle light steady in the air, too? Wood enveloped home, shed like, with a roaming dog. How inappropriate it would be to fill the summers drunken festival air with this sound. How timeless and yet how wonderfully time specific this sound is. Let’s all just crowd around, quietly, and maybe he can feel us sway, even if his lacking sight and life puts us out of reach.