Acclaimed singer-songwriter Justin Towned Earle , son of Steve Earle died at the age of 38. The statement released on Facebook and Instagram stated , “It is with tremendous sadness that we inform you of the passing of our son, husband, father and friend Justin. So many of you have relied on his music and lyrics over the years and we hope that his music will continue to guide you on your journeys. You will be missed dearly Justin. The statement didn’t reveal the cause of the death.
Although the announcement of the death ended with this lyrical quote:
I’ve crossed oceans
Fought freezing rain and blowing sand
I’ve crossed lines and roads and wondering rivers
Just looking for a place to land
Fans and friends took to social media to share the news with shock and sadness. The band The Head & Heart tweeted, “RIP Justin Townes Earle. We had the pleasure of playing a few shows together. He was such an immense songwriter and authentic soul. This year is a thief.”
In his interview with The Boot he shared,“My daughter is probably the reason I stopped writing songs that were so inward and started looking out into the world. I had to start worrying about the world because of her. I bought her a 9MM [handgun] the day she was born because I’m frightened like hell for her. … “I have a daughter; I can’t stop caring,” Earle says, with an obvious hint of pragmatic pride. “I have a mother that I take care of. I can’t ever stop caring. What I will stop doing, eventually … it’s what the record says. You push down white trash or poor black people or whoever long enough, we’re going to react. We will react. And you won’t like it. Baby Boomers love to say they stopped the Vietnam War, but they also ruined the stock market. Congrats, guys. Meanwhile, I can’t get a job at McDonald’s because of my criminal record. So if I don’t play music, I sell dope. I’m a criminal, and if I don’t play music, I’d probably be in prison or dead.”
He continued, “It’s hard, man. I’ve been committed to music since I was 15 years old. ’m a good father. I taught my daughter to cuss when the Cubs lose — she’s an Earle, so she’ll be fine. I’m a good father, but I’m a s—ty husband. I’m built for the road; I don’t know what the hell to do at home. But you know what? I never said I’d be good at any of that. Nobody can ever ask me to stop doing what I do. If you want to do what I do — like Townes Van Zandt or Guy Clark — you’re committed to it. Everybody else around you has to understand that.”
The singer launched his first EP called Yuma in 2007 and received an award from American Music Association as the new and emerging artist of the year.