A spokesman for Metro Nashville Police Department confirms officers discovered the body of Steve Earle’s son on Sunday, August 23, but the time of death has not been determined.
AceShowbiz -More details about the circumstances of Justin Townes Earle‘s sudden passing have been revealed by authorities. Metro Nashville Police Department spokesman Don Aaron told reporters on Tuesday, August 25 that the singer/songwriter died of a probable drug overdose.
The spokesman also confirmed that officers found the body of the “Harlem River Blues” singer on Sunday, August 23 at his Nashville apartment when they conducted a welfare check on the musician. The officers responded to a request for a welfare check from a friend who had not seen Justin since Thursday, and forced their way into the apartment.
The time of death has not been determined, pending autopsy results. The spokesman, however, affirms that there were no signs of a struggle or foul play.
Justin’s death was first confirmed by his label New West Records on Sunday. “It is with tremendous sadness that we inform you of the passing of our son, husband, father and friend Justin,” read a post on the singer’s Instagram page. “So many of you have relied on his music and lyrics over the years and we hope that his music will continue to guide you on your journeys.”
“You will be missed dearly Justin,” it added. The statement included lyrics of Justin’s song “Looking for a Place to Land”, “I’ve crossed oceans/ Fought freezing rain and blowing sand/ I’ve crossed lines and roads and wondering rivers/ Just looking for a place to land.” He was 38.
Justin was the son of alternative country artist Steve Earle with his third wife Carol Ann Hunter, and was named after Townes Van Zand. He was known for his mix of old-timey roots music and modern-day Americana.
Justin had in the past opened up about his struggles with substance abuse issues, which started since he was 12 and led to several stints in rehab. He attributed some of his early troubles to an unstable home environment following his father Steve’s separation from his mother.
“I think I was dealing with a lot of things I didn’t know how to deal with, between my father leaving and my mother bringing in a slew of drunken bastard boyfriends to live with us for a little while … by the time I emerged from my parents’ household at 15 years old, I was a very f**ked-up kid,” he told Rolling Stone in 2012. “I discovered very fast that my way of doing things was going to get me in trouble, and I kept going with it, because I believed the myth for a long time, and I believed I had to destroy myself to make great art.”
He had a relapse in 2010 and then again in 2016, but started to reclaim his life with the help of cannabis. “I am a participant of the marijuana maintenance program,” he told Chris Shiflett on the “Walking the Floor” podcast in 2017.
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