9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
My introduction to the greatest songwriter alive.,
This review is from: Late Great Daniel Johnston: Discovered Covered (Audio CD)
Go was my favorite song years before I knew who Daniel Johnston was. I downloaded the Sparklehorse & The Flaming Lips cover on a friend's computer while searching for Flaming Lips songs that weren't on any of their albums. I didn't know who wrote it or why it was recorded. I only knew that it was the most heartbreakingly beautiful song I had ever heard - and I listen almost exclusively to heartbreakingly beautiful songs. If it had been a tape I would have worn it out until the tape player ate it. If it had been a cd it would have been scratched beyond recognition. If it had been a stuffed animal, it would have been missing an eye, had matted fur, and stuffing coming out of the seams. I truly loved it.
My friend's computer crashed, and she lost all her music. And I lost this incredible song, and the loss made it take on a mythical quality. Somewhere out there, it existed. Like a person I had loved, it had changed me, and now it was gone... unattainable. Unrequited. It existed to me only in my memory.
I couldn't find it. I don't know why it was so hard to find, but I looked, and it didn't seem to exist. After a while, I accepted that it was gone, and it would go on without me wherever it was. "I come knocking at your door, you don't live there anymore. Is it just a memory, or am I a little crazy for you?"
Over time, I slowly pieced it all together, but still couldn't find this song and didn't think to check out the man behind it. Then I stumbled upon a Daniel Johnston art exhibit. I thought, Ah, I know what this is. This is that guy. I decided to look again. Maybe it was re-released since the last time I'd looked, but I immediately found Discovered Covered this time. I was elated and ordered it right away.
When I got it, I was overjoyed - I finally had my song back. My long lost love. But it quickly paled in comparison when I heard the album of Daniel's songs. I found myself loving the original version of Go even more than the cover, which I didn't think could be possible.
I didn't have the same reaction most people seem to when they hear Daniel for the first time; he was never weird or alien to me. It was like coming home. He had always been underneith everything I loved, and now I actually had him. The pure, underlying essence itself.
When you take away everything you can, what he is is what you have left. He is the foundation. He's the bones of the whole organism. That's just what he is. It's what he would be even if nobody knew it. Everything else is built up around what he does, while he is made up entirely of what is at the center of all art. His songs are so simple and familiar they almost seem obvious, but nobody else has the ability to just say it like he does.
The potential to dress it up in a million ways is all there, and that's what Discovered Covered does. But ultimately, all of that decoration is unnecessary. It is what lead me to him, but he was what was drawing me in the whole time.