Joe Henry, the musician and producer, writes such thoughtful and beautiful tributes on his Facebook page. I am always floored by his insight and imagery. Here's just a few snippets.
  1. Bob Dylan
    'but the words he spits into the air, half sung and half laughed out, act like jumper cables on a stalled and traumatized era that now lurches back into motion: it sparks and heaves black smoke into the room, and now nobody can see a thing.'
  2. Thelonious Monk
    'one of the great musical alchemists of my lifetime, and my gateway drug into an unshakeable addiction to fractured swing and tumbling melody. As close as any musician has come, the man painted upon the air like Picasso- playing with familiar forms, abstracting and refocusing them until again we are seduced into seeing all as essential and anew.'
  3. e.e. cummings
    '(He) knew as well as Robert Johnson that the gate we so fervently guard between life and death is a false border, that love is the answer and that death is not the end.'
  4. Louis Armstrong
    'to whom might he honestly be compared? ... we'll have to be thinking of the Brooklyn bridge and the pyramids, the Everest peak and the goddam Grand Canyon; the very wave of an ocean: here and then gone, but affirming the sweep and expanse of all time and change with one sighing gesture.'
  5. Orson Welles
    'even as his own petulance derailed his forward motion, there was great artistry in his descent; his flowing robes and wide hat throwing great shadows from which we still crawl and then scurry back to for shelter.'
  6. James Brown
    'his inventions were electrified and electrifying- drawing power and creating it in equal measure: a single thin rod, he called down lightening and fed it straight into the blood-soaked, hungry, troubled, and shaky ground; and from it grew a legion of followers ready to wail and dance upon the grave of any who might stop us.'
  7. Johnny Cash
    'and he would announce himself just like jesus might have announced himself at your doorway, knowing that you already knew who - and know all you could never: 'hello, I'm Johnny Cash.''
  8. B.B. King
    'and then there were none. ... it feels as though a great flag has been hauled down and folded into the triangle that tradition suggests shall be handed to the widow it has made of us all.'