Kip Marchetti
by on December 7, 2016
I never met John Westwood in person but I sure do miss him. 

Many years ago, while reading song lyrics in a now defunct Songwriters Forum, I ran across a member who was constantly catching hell for commenting and providing constructive criticism on fellow members song lyrics. He wasn't consumed with telling people what they wanted to hear about their songs but he offered heartfelt suggestions and critiques. If the song was good ... he said so. If the song needed a line here or there ... he said that as well. 

I was new to the forum, quite shy and new to writing as well, so I was mostly a lurker in the shadows until one day John (Carr) posted a lyric that I thought was pretty cool, so I got my courage up and I posted in the forum that I thought the lyric was pretty cool but I thought it needed this or that, here or there.. I no sooner posted my thoughts and John (Carr) posted something to the effect of, oh really ... would I like too help him out with a melody or perhaps a performance. I thought to myself, wow my first post and this guy who is constantly catching heat has invited me to participate, so I did. As I recall the song was called, "Writers Block Blues". As it turns out the song received a load of positive feedback and sparked a relationship that he carried for over 10 years. John and I wrote a lot of songs together, some good, some bad but mostly it was a process of learning, socializing, sharing stories, and just hanging out even though we lived on separate continents thousands of miles away from each other. John would tell me that, even his wife, or daughter, or son liked our song. It didn't happen often but when it did, I had to smile.

I don't know why John sent me lyrics because we had completely different opinions on how a particular lyric should sound.  I was mostly a folky, country, bluegrass guy and John seemed to me to be a rocking blues guy. He never ever complained when I'd ship a melody and performance back to him, he always encouraged whatever path I chose for his lyric. He was always thrilled to create a song together no matter what genre of music the song ended up sounding like.

Much later during our relationship, as John became immersed in his Songramp duties, and I in life's calling, we became less prodigious and eventually quit writing songs together. That's not to say that John quit writing lyrics but I mostly quit playing my guitar as it had worn out it's useful life. John emailed, called and encouraged me with snippets of lyrics but I just didn't really have the time or gear to devote to it. When I told John that I had computer recording problems, John offered to send me a computer. When I said I needed a guitar, John offered to send me a guitar. I of course didn't take him up on his generous offers but coming from a guy I never met in person living thousands of miles apart tells you all you need to know about John.

When I eventually got a new computer and guitar we never were able to reconnect nor restore the old vibe until last spring, or maybe it was summer. We wrote a song together that neither of us posted because I wasn't happy with my performance and I wanted to re-record it. I don't know where that recording is and I can't even remember what the song was called at this point. As John would say often to me, I'll have to find that, I know it's around here somewhere, on a tablet, on this computer or that computer. I guess I'll have to search.

John Westwood was a great man, very funny, hard working, and truly loved his family and friends.  We ran out of song writing steam but we never lost touch with each other. I am saddened by his sudden passing and miss his emails. Rest in Peace ol' buddy. We have a bunch of songs to finish when I get there.

Dale Crockett
I had the pleasure of being able to hang out with John Westwood in person a number of times. He was a really nice guy, very supportive of others songs here on The Ramp. He had a somewhat "quirky" sense of humor that some that didn't know him might not have understood, but those of us did "got ...View More
Kip Marchetti
Dale - nicely said. I miss John as well. Thanks for taking a moment to read this. Kip
Mick Adams
I was so saddened to hear of John's passing, and wish to relay my best wishes and prayers to Robyn, his lovely wife. I hope you read this, Robyn, and know how much I appreciated you and John welcoming me to my first Ramp Bash in 2011. I remember seeing his crazy, colorful logo in your motel window...View More
Eddie Minyard
This is super, Kip. John spoke of you quite often. He loved the works you created together.We've all had far too many gaps in this crazy songwriting thing. But, John never lost the passion for song WRITERS.Thanks for this great post.
Larry Killam
I glad that you and John had so many songs together.It was always joyful to see John lyrics come to life.John was there for me while I spent almost 2 years in Da Hospital.John was always adsking about me to my Daughter on facebook.John will be truly miss here on Da Ramp Kip.