Guy Clark’s Friends Remember the Master Songwriter

Texas Native Influenced Generations of Singer-Songwriters

As self-aware as he was, Guy Clark probably didn’t completely comprehend the extent he influenced other songwriters.

“I just try to do the best I can, you know,” Guy Clark told in 2013. “Sometimes I have more luck at it than not. … Just stick with it till you get something that sounds right — that is right.”

Aspiring songwriters — and veteran songwriters, too — gravitated toward the man who wrote classics such as “L.A. Freeway,” “Heartbroke,” “Desperadoes Waiting for a Train” and “She’s Crazy for Leavin’.”

When asked about the best advice he could provide other tunesmiths, Clark’s words were as straightforward and succinct as the lyrics he wrote.

“Don’t try to be careful,” he said. “Go ahead and do you best and let it fall wherever it falls. I mean, you just have to go for it.”

The Texas native died Tuesday (May 17) following a lengthy illness.

Here are some of messages his friends posted on social media as they remembered a one-of-a-kind artist.

Calvin Gilbert has served as’s managing editor since 2002. His background includes stints at the Nashville Banner, Radio & Records and Westwood One.