April 23 — RIVER ROAD, Jimmy LaFave (2005)

IMG_1795And today comes the sad news about Jimmy LaFave. He has a rare, terminal form of cancer. He doesn’t expect he has long.

I first saw Jimmy during the summer of 1997 at Steamroller Blues and BBQ, at 18th and Boston in Tulsa. The songs were full of heart, and the voice and guitar were a perfect fit. But what struck me most was the man’s soul. It’s rare that a delivery can expose what’s in the veins like that, especially for twenty-five years.

This morning it was a tweet from singer-songwriter Sam Baker that delivered me the news about “our dear, dear friend.” He posted this photo by Texas photographer Rodney Bursiel, taken at a show last night in Austin. “This photo just sums up the whole evening,” Bursiel wrote. “In spite of this dire news, his spirit is upbeat and as courageous as would be expected from our soulful friend.”

And so today I listened to Jimmy. While walking our dog Charlie, while riding my bike to and from yoga, and again tonight. His spirit was around all day. He has that effect. Always has.

Be well, Jimmy LaFave.



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