Requiem for a Songwriter

John Bassette, legendary folk musician, songwriter and cable-access host died last Thursday.
I knew John from Coventry in mid 80’s. He was using the moniker ‘Jon Bon’ and was a regular at the open mics at Arabica (also missed)He gladly lend his clear baritone harmonies to the spontaneous music parties that were ubiquitous at the time. His top hat, his bushy beard, and his red jacket were icons of an era when teenagers (myself included) could walk the streets of Coventry (in Cleveland Heights for those of you eagerly punching up Mapquest) every night, filling up on Apple pizza, Grumm’s subs, or a fallafel at Tommy’s.
For a short time, my brother Evan, myself, and John performed together as a trio, covering old standards and John’s catchy original songs. He was always on hand with a supportive comment or a warm smile.
When Alex Bevan came back to town (not as skinny, but just as fun) I took John to his first performance at Peabody’s Cafe. Alex had dedicated his classic ‘Springboard’ album to him, and I figured they should see each other. From what I understand, they were friends up to the end.
Goodbye John Bassette. You are already missed.

5 Replies to “Requiem for a Songwriter”

  1. May John Bassette rot in hell. He sexually assaulted me in 1977 when I was attending the University of Akron.

  2. I Was just a young teen when i first met John Bassette down on Hessler street in the EARLY 70’s. he had just released his MINI album and was working on THIS TIME AROUND. Thru the years we became closer and closer friends and along with the Hessler Street gang ( Terry Russo, Jim Bresslove and his yellow truck, had MANY MANY good times and adventures. He was a great influance and one of the kindest real spirits i had ever met to this day. When i found out of his passing, a part of me went along. I will ALWAYS miss him and remember his ways. The world needed John far more then he needed it, but ALWAYS had time for anyone. I could go on and on but it can be summed up in one sentance…. ” John , I love you and will always keep a part of you within myself. ” WE HAVE BEEN THRU SO MUCH TOGETHER “. L.B.MAZUR ( BUSH )

  3. I got to know John well in the late ’70’s through a friend on Coventry. He was a sweet and charming man. I had no idea he’d passed until I saw his obituary through Facebook. I will always remember him.

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