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View Diary: What are you reading? April 3, 2013 (67 comments)

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    After the Guitarist Wilko Johnson, who also displayed similar

    Wilko Johnson interview: 'It's a bloody good feeling being alive' | Music | The Guardian

    John Wilkinson is demonstrating his guitar technique to a television news crew, his Telecaster plugged into a little practice amp in the living room of his semi in a Southend suburb. He shows how he tightens and loosens his fingers on the strings to make his guitar, already trebly, sound like it is chopping and slashing. The demonstration done, the reporter produces a couple of old albums Wilkinson had played on; he professes his adoration and asks for a signature. And then a photo. "With the guitar, please," he requests. Wilkinson takes up the Telecaster and holds it up for the picture. For a few seconds, his lower jaw juts forward, his eyes bulge in a manic stare – and he is becomeWilko Johnson, amphetamine-powered goblin of Dr Feelgood, an inspiration to thepunk legions.

    Sometime later this year, we will say goodbye to Johnson. Before Christmas he wasdiagnosed with pancreatic cancer, then on 2 January he was told he had no more than a year to live.

    "It was a surprise," Johnson says, "but it didn't disturb me. We came out of the hospital and I was feeling high, elated. Normally I suffer from depression, and I thought maybe this was a reaction, but then a few nights later I was sitting in my room upstairs. I've got my room really nice, and it feels great sitting in there with my things around me. And I thought: 'I love being in my room.' Normally, I'd be sitting there thinking: 'My room is very groovy … but I'm really hung up about this.' I'd be worrying away about some rubbish. And now, suddenly, nothing mattered. Nothing mattered. I'm just sitting here in my room, and I love this room, and ain't this nice just sitting here? And I realised: you are alive and you are existing in the moment. You're not worried about the tax return. And it's a bloody good feeling being alive. Sometimes this feeling is almost ecstatic, and I can say that I haven't plunged into despair at all."

    Interviewer: What do you believe is behind this recent increase in terrorist bombings? Helpmann: Bad sportsmanship

    by ceebs on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 06:22:50 AM PDT

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