Montana Public Radio

Justin Townes Earle

 Justin Townes Earle (left) and Elllis Marsalis, previous guests on "Musician's Spotlight," died in 2020
Courtesy of Justin Townes Earle and Ellis Marsalis

As part of Montana Public Radio's "Honor, Hope and Healing" Week, Musician's Spotlight highlights two individuals, each part of a family musical dynasty, who didn't survive 2020.

Justin Townes Earle carries the names of a pair of troubadour heroes: his father, Steve Earle and his father’s mentor, Townes Van Zandt. Like both, Justin is a recording, performing musician; like both, addiction is one of his oldest adversaries. And like both, Justin Townes Earle has become a sharp songwriter, conjuring, as Skip Anderson puts it, “memorable characters into relatable songs that Americana fans love and latter-day country radio loves to overlook.”