Blind John Ellsworth (1960- ), a (questionable) poet and sometimes Texas bluesman. He has recorded one spoken-word album (thankfully unreleased), since he is still trying to learn to play guitar. (Lack of musical skills is what makes him a poet and not a lyricist. Plus, he can’t write music.)
Blind John Ellsworth has played the blues for years, although few outside a small circle of knowledgeable musicians have ever heard of him.
He was a deep influence on the early music of Stagecoach VII, which is a shame, since they were a cover band. Little is known of his early years, although he seems to have reversed the travels of most bluesmen, as he was born near Chicago, Illinois, about April 16, 1960 and later migrated south to Dallas, Texas. There are few known photographs, other than his one album cover (and out-takes), although his archivists are still searching for any available.
He has been a railroad traveler for much of his life, although he never actually worked on the rails, as many of his contemporaries did. He travels widely, according to some of the locations mentioned in his lyrics and prose. He also seemed to have gone to sea later in life, although (again) just as a passenger.
Not much is known of his professional life outside his poetry and music, although some of his writings were recovered from Mac-formatted discs, so he may have been partially computer-literate. There are also some of his works which were signed “Migrant Programmer”, so perhaps computers helped fund his writing activities. He would perform occasionally at pubs or coffee-houses, usually for tips and usually spontaneously, since he was never asked to perform. None of these shows seem to have been recorded, however. In fact, there is almost no recorded material at all, and as his work is relatively unknown, there are no known “cover” versions.
Blind John Ellsworth has been married twice, his first marriage ending in divorce. It is widely assumed his second will end in his “accidental” death. Records show he fathered one child in his first marriage, although details on Flatulent Richard Ellsworth (known as the “little fart”) are sketchy, at best. His later lyrics seem to deal more with his second wife, Stumblin’ Rose Dogwood.
He is an ordained minister, and has performed weddings. It is not clear if he was asked to sing at those events.
His writings are very sporadic, although he does seem to participate in NaPoWriMo each year, which is when much of his material is created.