“May your days be full of wonder
may your nights be full of stars
may you dance at every party
and may you learn to love the scars”
— John Kilzer (R.I.P. March 12, 2019)
Many years ago I worked at a label where John Kilzer was a then-new recording artist. The timing wasn’t right, and unfortunately I didn’t get to work directly with this deeply talented, deep-souled — but apparently troubled — man.
It seems that he had long ago kicked his drink problems. A 6’7″ basketball-player-turned-English-scholar-turned-rock-star-turned-minister – as laid out in this beautiful if heartbreaking obituary … he got sober, and became a minister and helped others: “John was more than a powerful musician, he was able to convey the angst of life. He was able to reach down and bring people up from the depths of despair and show them there was hope. He wanted to help with the burdens of others because he carried his own.”
The church where he ministered released the statement about his death; It did not disclose any details about the circumstances of his death, several of Kilzer’s friends and associates confirmed that the musician — who’d battled alcohol issues much of his life but had been sober since 2000 — had been struggling with his addiction again. In recent days, Kilzer had checked into an out-of-state rehab facility, where his body was found on Tuesday, they said. He was 62.
Sometimes this world is just too much for people, and that haunts me. We can never know what pain people are feeling inside – when on the outside it looks like they’ve got it licked ….
This Lucinda Williams song guts me every time. She wrote it after her brother committed suicide.