R.I.P. Johnny Salton: Fuzzy Guitar Heaven, BBQ Chicken and Soft Thighs
Some time ago, I had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Johnny Salton perform live and I once spent an afternoon in his company at Jill Kahn's place in North Miami where I was angling to do a piece on the Psycho Daisies for this here publication. The fact that the article never saw the light of day is one of my only regrets writing for the New Times; my sheriffs at the time "couldn't fit it in print."
But the sheriffs are the sheriffs and I am not even deputized.
He was not the skinny, switch-blade youth in ripped jeans and rock 'n' roll leather jacket I remembered from the Reactions' sleeves. Nor was he the droopy-eyed outlaw guitar-slinger from my Charlie Pickett and the Eggs inserts. This guy was fucking wild and barefoot and barbecued and bug-eyed and so in love with music.
That Johnny Salton's name is not on the lips of anyone who's ever deemed themselves musically savvy is a wrong that might not be corrected in my lifetime. Them savage mothers in Europe know, even if it's just from the Psycho Daisies canon. The grief and turmoil and humanity that that man wrenched out of six strings is undeniable. We are freaking blessed to be South Floridians and to have had him as a neighbor.
Regardless of which, Mr. Salton had been sick for a while with cancer. The suffering is gone and in this religion of rock 'n' roll, I can only hope that he is somewhere beautiful, guitar nearby, delicious BBQ chicken and soft thighs at hand. If there ever was a man who deserved the promise of Grecian gardens, it was Mr. Johnny Salton.
My life's been bettered by his music and from knowing him. All hail the King!
For those interested in paying their respects, services will be today at 10 a.m. at Mt. Sinai Cemetery, 1125 NW 137 Street.