Friday, February 5, 2021
– James McMurtry released an exclusive solo digital EP, "Soundcheck at the Gallery"
as a benefit for the legendary Austin-based Continental Club, to help cover the venue's mounting costs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new EP doubles down on efforts already in motion by the McMurtry. His recent digital EP "Blast From the Past," also benefits the club. McMurtry, who has had a Wednesday-night residency at the Continental for more than 20 years, is donating 100 percent of both of the EPs' sales.
"All moneys for the two EPs go directly to the staff of the Continental Club," McMurtry said, "because they can't mix a virtual margarita."
"Soundcheck From the Gallery" offers four of McMurtry's narratives — "Delaware," "Levelland," "Melinda" and his show-closing "Peter Pan" — solo acoustic.
The five-song "Blast From the Past," featuring McMurtry on vocals and guitar, Ronnie Johnson on bass, Daren Hess on drums, and Tim Holt on guitar, was recorded at the Continental in 2006. McMurtry bookends Blast From the Past with "Rachel's Song" and Jon Dee Graham's "Laredo," with "St. Mary of the Woods, "See the Elephant," and "Out Here in the Middle" between.
McMurtry is doing live streams Wednesday Night Hunker Bunker at 8 p.m. and Sunday Go to Meetin' at 1 p.m. (both Central time). Additionally, he'll join Alejandro Escovedo, Jackson Browne, Steve Earle, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Rodney Crowell, Shinyribs, Verlon Thompson, and others on Feb. 13, 6 p.m. (Central) for the Food for Love virtual concert, with all proceeds benefiting New Mexicans facing hunger during the pandemic.