A new podcast paying tribute to the late outsider musician Daniel Johnston will feature conversations about mental health with musicians performing at the Austin City Limits Music Festival. The Hi, How Are You? Podcast launched today on Spotify and the website for the Hi, How Are You Project with an episode featuring Black Pumas’ Adrian Quesada and another that features both the duo Surfaces and members of the flash-mob group Bob’s Dance Shop. The episodes include music by Johnston.
Future episodes will feature Charlie Crockett, Toosii, Gina Chavez, Mother Mother, TikToker Jessie Murph, Dayglow, and many others. New episodes will premiere Tuesdays and Thursdays through mid-October.
The program’s hosts are students from the University of Texas at Austin, while clinical advisors from the American Psychological Association and the Texas Psychological Association provide additional commentary. The Hi, How Are You Project’s Dr. Sonia Krishna, a member of its board of directors, also shares insights. The nonprofit foundation’s goal is to open conversations about mental health free of stigmas.
“These are not clinical chats, and we weren’t looking for answers or cures,” Tom Gimbel, Hi, How Are You Project’s executive director and co-founder, said in a statement. “We were looking for new ways to tell stories about people’s journeys and challenges in life and to make others feel connected rather than isolated.”
Johnston died of natural causes in 2019 after years of struggling with mental health. “Although he struggled with mental health issues for much of his adult life, Daniel triumphed over his illness through his prolific output of art and songs,” his family said in a statement at the time. “He inspired countless fans, artists, and songwriters with his message that no matter how dark the day, ‘the sun shines down on me’ and ‘true love will find you in the end.'”