Cult Musician Dying, Says Worries Are Gone

    February 4, 2013
    Amanda Crum
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Wilko Johnson announced recently that he’s suffering from terminal pancreatic cancer…but the word “suffering” doesn’t exactly seem to apply here.

Johnson, whose early days in the music business were formed by the British band Dr. Feelgood, decided he wasn’t going to let the illness keep him from the stage he loves. Since making the announcement, Johnson has continued to tour (to sold-out shows) and exhibits a frenetic energy while playing, keeping audiences in awe. But Johnson says he’s not trying to prove anything; rather, the things that mattered so much before just don’t have the same power.

“It makes you feel so alive,” Johnson said of learning he had less than a year to live. “Just walking down the street, man, everything looks really intense. Any little thing you look at, it almost gives you a kind of childlike consciousness. I’m a miserable so-and-so. I suffer from depression and everything … but all that stuff whatever it was I used to worry about – it doesn’t matter. What’s gone, what is and what will be, do not matter.”

If anything, the musician’s diagnosis has given him a fresh perspective, as well as a fresh bout of creativity. Johnson says he’s been writing songs again and is looking forward to recording them in what may be his last band session.

‘‘I think there will be an album. It’s going to be rough and ready, because we’ve got about three or four days and we’re just going to go in and to bash it down. We’re not going to twiddle with anything,” he said.

Johnson, who is also an actor and has appeared on the enormously popular series “Game Of Thrones”, is determined not to go down without a fight, and his fans love him all the more for it.

  • Alexis


  • Wilko Fan

    On a whim several months ago I recorded “Oil City Confidential” on The Documentary channel. I was mezmerized by the movie, the tunes, and Wilko’s on-stage antics and his unique pick-less playing style, as well as the stories of the Dr. Feelgood and who they influenced (Blondie, Sex Pistols, Clash, Ramones, etc.). I’ve watched it 4 times since I recorded it, and am now going to get their catalogue on disc. Their Youtube vids are great, when Lee and Wilko were in a zone on stage.

    I’m a huge Replacements fan, and am always drawn to the true bands that play with heart, but are under appreciated when they’re together, usually bands destined for miserable commercial failure, but artistic greatness…..with that loveable losers mentality, who aren’t afraid to wear everything on their sleeves, including their snot!

    Dr. Feelgood was so friggin’ hip in their uncool un-pretentiousness (their logo is so lame and perfect at the same time). Why aren’t there more bands like this? Please answer me this question……Why are we inundated by crap like Bieber, Gaga, and Beyotche?

    God bless Wilko and his “Live like you were dying” mentality which is the real deal. Watch the documentary, buy their music, write & play good music, live each day as if it’s your last, make peace with God and those you’ve hurt along the way, and support live music!!!! Let’s turn this thing around and show true rock legends like Wilko & Lee that their time together was not in vain, we’ll be able to enjoy them forever. Soon they’ll they’ll be jamming with Johhny Thunders on guitar and Phil Lynott showing Sid Vicious bass licks and Keith Moon on the skins….schweeeeet

    Long Live Rawk

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