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Alejandro Escovedo
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Alejandro Escovedo

Hometown: Austin, Texas
Tags: rock, americana, singer-songwriter, alt-country

ACCOLADES
2006- Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Performing
1998- Named No Depression Artist of the Decade
1993- Musician of the Year at Austin Music Awards

DISCOGRAPHY
RANK & FILE
1982- Sundown

TRUE BELIEVERS
1986- True Believers
1994- Hard Road (2 discs; included repackaged True Believers)

BUICK MACKANE
1997- The Pawn Shop Years

SOLO
1992- Gravity
1994- Thirteen Years
1996- With These Hands
1998- More Miles Than Money: Live 1994-1996
1999- Bourbonitis Blues
2001- A Man Under the Influence
2002- By the Hand of the Father
2005- Room Of Songs
2006- The Boxing Mirror
2008- Real Animal
2010- Street Songs Of Love

SOUNDTRACKS
2004- Robbing Peter
2007- Jimmy Carter: Man From Plains

BANDS
He began his music career with The Nuns, a mid’70s punk band based in San Francisco.

*The Nuns opened for Sex Pistols’ last show at Winterland in January 1978

*played with Judy Nylon in 1978

*The first show he played with Nylon was a pivotal moment: opening at Max’s Kansas City for former Velvet Underground guitarist John Cale.

*co-founded the pioneering alt-country band Rank and File (w/ Chip and Tony Kinman ) in 1980

*formed True Believers (with brother Javier and Jon Dee Graham) 1983

*played national tours supporting Los Lobos

*Buick MacKane 1987-90

*a nod to the influence of the 70’s on Escovedo’s musical tastes and reflects an edgier, harder rocking sound than any of his solo releases.

*Alejandro Escovedo Orchestra 1987-90 (3-15 piece renowned Austin band)

FACTS
-Lived at Chelsea Hotel during Sid & Nancy days

-Worked at Waterloo Records after True Believers broke up

-Steven Bruton produced his first solo albums

-John Cale, one of his idols, produced THE BOXING MIRROR

-subject of an upcoming documentary by Jonathan Demme

-2008 photoshoot by legendary rock n’ roll photographer Mick Rock

-Tony Visconti produced REAL ANIMAL & STREET SONGS OF LOVE

-In 2003, after having lived with Hepatitis-C for many years, Alejandro fell critically ill and nearly died.

-Friends and admirers around the country organized benefit shows to help the songwriter. This effort grew into the album POR VIDA: A TRIBUTE TO THE SONGS OF ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO in 2004. The 31 contributing musicians included Steve Earle, Jon Dee Graham, Lucinda Williams, John Cale, Jennifer Warnes, Ian Hunter, The Jayhawks, Los Lonely Boys and Son Volt, as well as family members Pete Escovedo, Javier Escovedo and niece Sheila E.

-In 2005, Escovedo’s song “Castanets” appeared on the iPod playlist of George W. Bush, prompting a self-imposed ban on live performances of the song.
*Alejandro performed “Castanets” on December 29, 2007 while opening for Patti Smith in New York City’s Bowery Balloom.

THEATRICAL WORK
BY THE HAND OF THE FATHER is the music and selected stories from the theatre-work created by Alejandro Escovedo in collaboration with playwrights Theresa Chavez, Eric Gutierrez and Rose Portillo. The play and music explore the relationships between immigrant fathers and their children. The theatrical work grew out of songs he had written about his father, Pedro Escovedo

FAMILY
-His parents emigrated to Texas from Mexico

-His father played in local mariachi bands in the 1930’s, as sang in major East Bay bands

-Brothers Coke Escovedo and Pete Escovedo, both percussionists, have played with Santana, Azteca and Malo

-Longtime Prince collaborator Sheila E (Pete’s daughter and Alejandro’s niece)

QUOTES

“Alejandro is an abstract expressionist historian of his and our past, of emotion and desire.”
– Jonathan Demme

“Musically, Alejandro Escovedo is in his own genre.”
-David Fricke, Rolling Stone

“Escovedo has blended the lyricism of Bruce Springsteen and Jackson Browne with the raw power of the Stooges and the Velvet Underground…the result is music with heart, brains, and a burning sense of adventure.”
- Mark Kemp, Rolling Stone

“A masterwork from one of the genuine lights in rock music.”
-Billboard

“Escovedo’s songs brim with beauty and suffering, love and fear, anger and determination — in short, with life.”— USA Today

“Escovedo keeps getting better at an age when most artists are on cruise control.”
- Chicago Tribune

“Tom Waits. Bruce Springsteen. Bob Dylan. They’re master singer-songwriters who thousands have tried to emulate. This John Cale-produced album proves there’s another name ready for the list.”
- Penthouse

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  • Rolling Stone Reviews

    Rolling Stone Reviews on Alejandro Escovedo

    about 1 year ago

    3.5 Stars
    "Dylan dropped acid in the limelight," sings Tex-Mex singer-songwriter Alejandro Escovedo on "Headstrong Crazy Fools," savoring the recklessness of youth with a James Jamerson bass line and a Lou Reed rhyme scheme. Escovedo nods to his forebears here, as on 2008's Real Animal. more at rollingstone.com

  • AustinChronicle

    AustinChronicle on Alejandro Escovedo

    over 6 years ago

    With the variety of his material and comrades, Alejandro Escovedo could hold a mini-SXSW himself, which in effect this evening was.more at austinchronicle.com

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