Homeless guitarist: "I can't just write a song; I have to live i - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Homeless guitarist: "I can't just write a song; I have to live it"

“I can’t just write a song, I have to live it,” David Johnson says “I can’t just write a song, I have to live it,” David Johnson says

You never know what you’ll find on Facebook, but sometimes it’s a gem. We discovered a short clip of a man performing a country song in a pawn shop. We didn’t have his name, but we knew where the video was shot - A&W Pawn in Longview.

Pawn shop owner Debbie Witherspoon says sometimes her customers have talent. Witherspoon said a couple days earlier, two guys wandered in and one of them started playing.

“It almost made me cry. They said they would try to hustle some money together to try to buy the guitar,” Witherspoon said.

They came back, and Witherspoon made them a deal.

“And they serenaded us again and we videod it. We thought everybody needs to see this. It was very heartfelt.” Witherspoon revealed.

She said she didn’t know the singer’s name, but thought he might be at the Hiway 80 Rescue mission.

“I hear guitar,” I observed when I got to the mission. “And there he is!”

“My name is David Johnson, I’m a singer-songwriter from Jonesboro, AR, and I’ve hitch-hiked about 3,000 miles trying to get people to listen to my music,” the man said.

He had some marital problems and a run-in with the law, but he says that’s all cleared up now. Johnson says in Arkansas he was a house painter, concrete worker and did odd jobs, but couldn’t rise above the poverty level, so he stuck out his thumb and hit the road.

In Memphis his guitar was stolen, and a bus ticket got him to Marshall where he made a little money performing, but not enough for a hotel.

“I ended up sleeping behind the mall. Man, it was cold,” Johnson said.

He’s warmer at the mission. He says he’s written more than 25 songs since he was 14.

“I can’t just write a song. I have to live it,” David said.

“I’m still plugging at it, and I ain’t gonna quit. I do believe dreams come true,” Johnson added.

There’s more music in him. All he has to do is live for it to come out.

Copyright 2014 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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