A homeless man’s original song stuns the crowd, as well as those who have watched the viral video of the chance encounter. Doug Seegers has reportedly had a rough journey through life, one that ultimately ended in homelessness.
The homeless man’s song has been widely praised as the next great blues title and has given goosebumps to many of those who watched him perform the piece while strumming an old guitar along a sidewalk. Doug Seegers sang, “Going Down to the River” to a small crowd of onlookers who were too moved by the experience to simply drop a few coins in the tattered guitar case and walk away.
Seegers appeared bashful at all the praise heaped upon him after playing “Going Down to the River.” May of the social media commenters stated that the homeless man’s original blues ditty was more than a song; they felt as if they had just seen his soul while gathered on the grass and swaying along with the music.
“Going Down to the River” turned the 67-year-old street performer into a superstar overnight. The Tennessean has deemed homeless man Doug Seegers the newest star in country music. Right now Seegers is in Sweden taking a respite from the summer Nashville heat. The former homeless street performer is now playing festivals around the world and sharing the stage with the likes of Dwight Yoakam and Neil Young.
Seegers is happy to sign his name to his first and recently released album. On the recording, the sings a duet with County Music Hall of Fame member Emylou Harris. Last month Harris called the former street performer and complimented him on his singing. Seegers could barely find his voice to choke up a few words of gratitude for the praise and then wept after hanging up the phone.
The whirlwind music stardom for the homeless man in December of 2012 when musician Aaron Espe published a cell phone video of “Going Down to the River” on YouTube. The vide was entitled, “Who is Doug Seegers?” Aaron Espe also wrote that the guitarist and singer is an out-of-work carpenter from Nashville who sometimes ventures into the mission on Charlotte Street for a meal and “busks” often on Second Avenue. “That’s really all I know,” Espe said.
Aaron Espe also had this to say about the homeless man strumming an old cheap black guitar along the sidewalk:
“Nobody was listening. People don’t understand that you cannot teach what he’s doing. That vibe. His haunting voice. The way he makes you feel something. I hope people watch this video. I hope a million more dollar bills go into that guitar case of his.”
The video Espe posted of Doug Seegers received virtually no traffic in March of this year. People from around the world started to stumble across the unknown homeless man playing his guitar and belting out what many felt just had to be a blues classic.
What do you think of the former homeless man’s original son and being called the “Cinderella man” by music lovers in Sweden?
[Image Via: Peter Cooper/The Tennessean]