Celebrating the Living, at the Moment

Erik Loomis of LG&M tweeted out that Guy Clark has entered a nursing home and is “stable.”

It’s almost surprising he lasted this long. Suzanna, his long-time wife (a songwriter in her own right, who co-wrote “Come From the Heart,” which her husband covered on Old Friends, and “Easy From Now On,” among other classics) died almost four years ago, in June of 2012.

The next year, Clark released what may become his final album, My Favorite Picture of You. Here’s the discussion and title track.

But Susanna was immortalized long before that. “Oh, Susanna, don’t you cry, babe/Love’s a gift that’s truly handmade,” is not just echoic of classic Americana; it has become classic Americana (and, with the possible exception of “Desperadoes Waiting for a Train,” Clark’s best known song, as covered by Jerry Jeff Walker and Roger Creager, among others):

Here’s his ACL Hall of Fame Inauguration, with testimonies from Lyle Lovett, Steve Earle, and others

On a personal note, I saw Kirby Brown at City Winery last week, and this is the one song he covered in his set, so the legend will continue into the next generation:

As a fitting endnote, this is Lyle Lovett discussing and covering the first song Clark ever wrote (and never himself recorded). I don’t know if Guy Clark was ever young, but I defy anyone this side of Prince or Bruce Cockburn to figure out what things are wrong with it: