Billy Joe Shaver w/ Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys
Sunday September 29, 2013 @ 7:30 PM
Billy Joe Shaver has never been a household name, but his songs became country standards during the '70s and his reputation among musicians and critics has remained legendary throughout the ensuing decades.
All Music Guide lists 23 albums, from 1973’s Old Five & Dimers Like Me through 2007’s Everybody’s Brother. Among his many classic songs are “I'm Just an Old Chunk of Coal (But I'm Gonna Be a Diamond Some Day),” “Honky Tonk Heroes,” “Georgia on a Fast Train,” “Live Forever,” “Tramp on Your Street,” and “Try and Try Again.”
In 1999, Shaver was invited to perform at the Grand Ole Opry" Grand Ole Opry. In 2005, Billy Joe Shaver performed on CMT Outlaws CMT Outlaws. In 2006, he was inducted into the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame" Texas Country Music Hall of Fame. He recently served as spiritual advisor to Texas independent gubernatorial candidate. Kinky Friedman" Kinky Friedman and his 2007 album Everybody’s Brother was nominated for a GRAMMY. For his efforts, the Americana Music Association awarded him their Lifetime Achievement Award in Songwriting.
Shaver is truly one of the most respected living figures in American music. His songs have been cut by Elvis, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and many others. Bob Dylan, who rarely covers other writers, often plays Billy Joe‘s “Old Five And Dimers Like Me” in concert and Johnny Cash called him “my favorite songwriter.” The Washington Post noted, “when the country outlaws were collecting their holy writings, Billy Joe Shaver was carving out Exodus.”
After leading several popular ‘80s cult bands in and around his hometown of Lawrence, Kansas, Chuck Mead landed on Nashville’s Lower Broadway where he co-founded the famed ‘90s Alternative Country quintet BR549. The band’s seven albums, three Grammy nominations and the Country Music Association Award for Best Overseas Touring Act would build an indelible bridge between authentic American Roots music and millions of fans worldwide. With BR on hiatus, Chuck formed The Hillbilly All-Stars featuring members of The Mavericks, co-produced popular tribute albums to Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings, guest-lectured at Vanderbilt University, and became a staff writer at one of Nashville’s top song publishers. In 2009, he released his acclaimed solo debut album, Journeyman’s Wager, and toured clubs, concert halls and international Rock, Country and Rockabilly festivals with his band The Grassy Knoll Boys.
As Music Director for the Broadway smash Million Dollar Quartet, Chuck began crafting the music arrangements during the show’s original Daytona and Seattle workshop productions, supervised the musical performances for its 2008 Chicago opening, created new music material for the show’s Tony-winning Broadway run, produced the original cast album, and oversaw the music for its smash 2011 premiere at London’s Noël Coward Theatre.
Chuck’s new album, Back At The Quonset Hut, was recorded at Nashville’s legendary Quonset Hut Studio where Patsy Cline, George Jones, Merle Haggard Roger Miller, Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash and more cut some of country’s greatest tracks. Produced by original BR549 producer Mike Janas and with the participation of students from Belmont University’s College of Entertainment and Music Business, the album of classic covers features surviving members of Music Row’s original ‘A Team’ studio musicians as well as guest appearances by Old Crow Medicine Show, Elizabeth Cook, Jamie Johnson and Bobby Bare. “It’s been incredibly liberating to do all these things I’ve never done before,” Chuck says. “I’ve already gone from the bars of Lower Broadway in Nashville to the Broadway stage, and the upcoming album is one of the most unique and rewarding projects I’ve ever been a part of. I’m looking forward to where it all brings me next”.
Georgia on a Fast Train (Live at Farm Aid 1990)
Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys