John Darnielle is a human male and American musician who was born in Indiana.
Alone or in collaboration with others, he has been known as the Mountain Goats since 1991. He grew up in Central California, and has lived in many states, but now lives in North Carolina with his wife and child and at least one cat that I have observed. I visited his home in the year 2011. I took off my shoes when I came in the door because that is my habit. No one made me do it. John Darnielle's house is not rockstar huge, nor rockstar glamorous. It does not have a home theater or rolfing center. It's modest. There is an office packed with shelves reflecting his preoccupations: pulp horror and philosophy and religious study. John Darnielle is fascinated with both death metal and the Holy Bible and speaks eloquently of the dark magic and elegance and grace of both.
Now I am going to tell you that, in the study by the stairs, I stepped in a little bit of cat vomit. I can report that John Darnielle was not embarrassed. Because he knows it is in a cat's nature to vomit, and because he saw an opportunity for kindness. He loaned me some socks, and they were argyle, warm from the dryer and very soft. The house has a basement, which John Darnielle describes as "awesome." The basement is not particularly awesome. (I have seen some awesome basements.) It has some drums and guitars in it but otherwise is a fairly typical basement of a modest, middle-class home. Normal. It is my impression that this may be why John Darnielle considers his basement to be awesome, for such normality was not necessarily going to be his fate.
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