Jon Dee Graham

Jon Dee Graham

Jon Dee Graham is a legend on the Austin music scene. He's been inducted into the Austin Music Hall of Fame three times, in 2000 as a solo artist, in 2008 as a member of the Skunks, and in 2009 as a member of the True Believers. In 2006, the readers of the Austin Chronicle named him Austin Musician of the Year. In 2008, Graham was the subject of a portrait-of-the-artist documentary, Swept Away, which is available nationally on DVD. In its final issue, No Depression magazine called the film, "superb." Shortly after the films release in the Spring of 2008, Graham survived a one car crash on Texas' I-35 that claimed his spleen, left him with a zipper scar up his chest, and permanently wreaked havoc on his back and neck. Despite a massive hospital bill – or perhaps because of it – Graham was back at work about one month later at his beloved Continental Club in Austin. He's barely slowed down since, finding time to write and record a new album – his first studio record since 2006 -- and making time to develop a new weekly live residency, Jon Dee and Friend, -- whose guests have included Kelly Willis, Alejandro Escovedo, James McMurtry, & Curt Kirkwood amongst others. It's Not As Bad As it Looks, Graham's 2010 release is about -- you guessed it – second chances, hope, sin & redemption, the constant search for higher meaning and a path forward, and trying to walk that fine line life often forces upon you. And it's all delivered through Jon Dee Graham's unique prism of pointed lyrics, searing guitar, and arrangements that sway between touching ballads and balls out rock with a punk edge. "I know this is loaded and I am way too close to it" Graham says, "but I think it's my best record since my first one, Escape From Monster Island." It's Not As Bad As It Looks was recorded at Austin's Wire Recording with Stuart Sullivan at the helm. Graham produced with his long-time musical partner and cohort, Mike Hardwick. Another stalwart compadre, Andrew Duplantis, of Son Volt, was on bass. And Joey Sheffield held down the backbeat with help from another Austin fixture, drummer Daren Hess. It's Not As Bad As It Looks is Graham's seventh record overall and his fourth album with Freedom Records.

Fred Friction

Fred Friction first made a name for himself in the St. Louis music scene as producer and frontman of Night of a 1,000 Spoons, a highlight among the many themed shows in the early indie rock scene based at Cicero’s Basement Bar, and as a sideman on spoons with Enormous Richard.

With Mark Stephens, he formed The Highway Matrons in 1994 and began to emerge as a major songwriter. He also is an important tastemaker as host of Fishin’ with Dynamite on KDHX and former owner the seminal Frederick’s Music Lounge.

"Fred Friction does not offer precision, flashiness or a flawless performance. He offers the truth. And though this local legend has an army of musicians to choose from when he wants accompaniment for his live shows, he frequently prefers to present his deceptively simple songs with just his voice and an acoustic guitar. He sings sweet stories of childhood dreams, relays booze-soaked tales of regret and pushes through sad love songs with twist endings. Friction's songs are personal and touching in such a way that it is impossible to separate the man from the music. His sincere delivery is inimitable, and the tunes are always delivered with wise, knowing eyes and a bemused grin.

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Jon Dee Graham with Fred Friction

Wednesday, July 3 · Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM at The Gramophone