The Popfest and Daniel Johnston
Although many fine artists played Athens Popfest, now that it's over I'm left with the impression that the best was saved for last. Or, at least, the most important. Daniel Johnston closed out the festival on Saturday night (8/11) and delivered a performance that exceeded my expectations.
Johnston began the show with a solo set before being joined on the 40 Watt stage by a guitarist. The audience was largely reverent throughout, with only a few drunken idiots making their presence known. Luckily it was the sort of crowd that asks said idiots to please quiet down and behave, thankyouverymuch. I can't remember such an experience since the Silver Jews tour opener at the same venue 17 months ago.
About halfway through the set Johnston was joined on stage by Casper & the Cookies, who acted as his band for the evening. They played a number of his "hits" including "Casper the Friendly Ghost," "Speeding Motorcycle," "Impossible Love," and "Sorry Entertainer." I didn't keep track of the setlist, but both Sloan from Southern Shelter and my friend Lance were there taping.
Daniel Johnston - Speeding Motorcycle
Daniel Johnston - Sorry Entertainer
For those in Athens, The Devil and Daniel Johnston will be showing all week at Athens Ciné downtown. Showtimes are online.
A huge thanks to the Popfest organizers for all their hard work!