Unfortunately, bad luck is often followed by more of the same. Take songwriter–guitar slinger Jon Dee Graham, whose son Willie was diagnosed with a rare and debilitating disease at the same time the family’s insurance company declared bankruptcy. Fortunately, Graham lives in Austin and has many talented friends, who contributed to the benefit CD- DVD set Big Sweet Life: The Songs of Jon Dee Graham (Freedom; available at texasmusicroundup.com), a souvenir of a Continental Club tribute in June coupled with an all-star video shoot. Graham’s elegiac yet hopeful works are interpreted by everyone from Ray Benson and Patty Griffin to Kathy McCarty and Ray Wylie Hubbard. Some performances resonate more than others, but all are heartfelt, a testament not only to what Graham means to his friends but also to what music means to his adopted hometown.
From the January 2006 Issue Subscribe