Vic Chesnutt was born in Jacksonville, FL, in 1964, and grew up in Zebulon, GA. A drunk-driving automobile crash in his late teens left him semi-paralyzed and wheelchair-bound. Around 1985 he relocated to Athens, GA, a college town most famous for being the birthplace of REM. For a while he was a member of local band the La-di-dahs. Chesnutt had been writing songs since he was a child, and following the break-up of the La-di-dahs, began appearing regularly as a solo performer in the local Athens clubs. His partial paralysis limited his guitar playing to simple strums, but he soon earned a reputation for his stark yet often humorous songwriting. He also earned a reputation around town as a heavy drinker and an occasionally nasty drunk.