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Gurf Morlix returns to Lethbridge with Blaze Foley tribute

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Blaze Foley, was the type of crazy, spontaneous, exciting cat Beatniks like Jack Kerouac wrote books about and the type of guys minstrels write songs about — literally.
 Lucinda Willaims wrote a song about him  called “Drunken Angel,” as did Townes Van Zandt, who wrote Blaze’s Blues. Foley was murdered in 1989 at the age of 39, but his spirit lives on.
Gurf Morlix returns to Lethbridge, June 8. Photo by Richard Amery
One way to keep the spirit of an old friend alive is to put together a musical tribute to him which is what Austin’s Gurf Morlix has done to celebrate the life of Blaze Foley.

“He was a real character. He was a homeless guy and an alcoholic and a songwriter,” said Morlix who will be bringing his tribute to Blaze Foley, Wednesday, June 8 at the Geomatic Attic.

 Numerous people have covered Foley’s songs including Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Lyle Lovett, and John Prine, just to name a few. Lucinda Williams wrote a song about him called “Drunken Angel.” Morlix also wrote a song about him.

 The evening will  begin with an hour long documentary by filmmaker Kevin Triplett, who never knew Foley, but spent 12 years interviewing people who knew him to make his debut film.

Triplett himself joins the tour and will be answering questions after the film. Morlix will then play a set of songs from his new Blaze Foley tribute Album, “Blaze Foley’s 113th Wet Dream.”

“It has all come together in the past year. Everyone who is involved with this is doing it for the right reasons,” said Morlix, who is pleased that Foley’s legend lives on more than 20 years after he was murdered for defending a friend of his who was being abused by his son.

“He just lived life on his own terms. He wanted success, but he wanted it on his own terms. I’m glad it is starting to happen now,” Morlix remembered.
“He had this crazy code of honour. Blaze was killed protecting an old man, an old drinking buddy of his from his kid stealing his money and spending it on heroin. So Blaze beat the kid up,” Morlix continued.

“I’m doing all I can to spread the word about Blaze,” Morlix added.

Morlix is renown as a songwriter and producer in his own right, having worked with Lucinda Williams, Romi Mayes, Ray Wylie Hubbard and Ray Bonneville, to name a few. But for now his main focus has been the Blaze Foley tribute CD and tour.
 He chose some more obscure songs from Foley’s catalogue as well as a few more familiar numbers from Foley’s “Cold, Cold World,” CD.
“I didn’t just want to do the same songs everyone else has. I wanted to do one or two surprises as well. I want to help people learn what a great songwriter he was,” he said.

Morlix began this tour in Texas and Oklahoma, then allover the southern United States before going to Europe and playing  the UK  in places like Glasgow, Scotland and Holland where people are almost more familiar with Foley’s work than in America.

“A lot of people know about Blaze Foley through his friendship with Townes Van Zandt and they are willing to dig a little deeper. If they know Townes, then they know all about Blaze,” he continued.
“ Townes is an entry point for them to learn about Blaze.  Art goes deeper over there,” he continued.
Tickets are $25 for members, $27.50 for non-members or $30 at the door. The show begins at 8 p.m.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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Last Updated ( Monday, 06 June 2011 13:58 )  
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