I’m an author, musician and artist. I live in Austin, Texas with my wife, Lois Richwine, and a bunch of cats. We have a teenage son, Dashiell.

My crime novels include Rock Critic Murders, Tough Baby and Boiled in Concrete. Protagonist Martin Fender is a blues bass player who moonlights as a skip tracer and problem solver in Austin, Texas. My memoir, Never the Same Again: A Rock n’ Roll Gothic, was published in 2004. That one is actually darker and more violent than my crime novels. More info at BOOKS BY JESSE SUBLETT.

My work has been published in New York Times, Texas Observer, Texas Monthly, Austin Chronicle and various other places. For years I wrote extensively for the History Channel.

I’ve written for reality TV and other TV/ film projects, including a film, “Deep in the Heart (of Texas),” which I adapted from a play, and eventually, rewrites from director Stephen Purvis and also Tom Huckabee were incorporated into the final work. Check out the DVD on Amazon here. I also do ghost writing of books.

If you’ve heard me referred to as a Texas Music Legend , you may want to read about my band, THE SKUNKS, which I founded the band with Eddie Munoz and Billy Blackmon in 1977. The Skunks are listed in Wikipedia, too. Caution, there are numerous other bands in the US (and at least one in Germany and another in the UK) called The Skunks, so if you Google us, include “Austin” in the search terms. To hear some of my current repertoire, use the music player below right or click the titles here Headless SupermodelSTONES IN THE COFFINGrave Digger BluesSaint James Infirmary Blues.

A recent interview here on Rag Radio by Thorne Dreyer, plus 3 songs recorded live in the studio during the interview.

CURRENT AND ONGOING PROJECTS: a nonfiction crime book about Austin in the fifties and sixties (read about the Overton Gang here). I keep working on this thing, off and on. It may end up being something other than one nonfiction book. Perhaps it will be a series of short alternative histories of Austin. It’s hard to say where it will go.

… I’m proud of my work with Sherry Matthews, on this book, We Were Not Orphans: Stories from Waco State Home, published by UT Press 2011. Forward by esteemed Robert Draper.

AND … I’m the co-author with Broadus Spivey (Austin attorney), of a book about Homer Maxey, a powerful developer and civic leader in Lubbock who lost all his money in the 1960s in a controversial bank foreclosure. Maxey was also the father of internationally renowned sculptor Glenna Goodacre. The book, titled Broke, Not Broken: Homer Maxey’s Texas Bank War will be published by Texas Tech Press May 2014.

My most recent book, a pulp fiction  novel, Grave Digger Blues, is available as a Kindle e-book, an iPad enhanced edition, and as a 6 x 9 paperback. It’s cool and weird! See the Grave Digger Blues page.

In May 2011 13e Note Editions of France published an anthology of my fiction, nonfiction, lyrics and excerpts from all my books. The title is Une Vie En Noir (A life of noir/black).

The Skunks are still alive, featuring me on bass and vocals and Jon Dee Graham on guitar. The band was inducted in the Austin Music Hall of Fame in 2008 and are credited with being the band that helped put Austin on the international map of rock n’ roll. A pretty good story about us in the Chronicle here.

Some of the famous people who jammed with the Skunks include Blondie, Elvis Costello, The Clash, Cheap Trick… We opened for The Police in ’79, also for The Cramps, Ramones, Dictators, and too many to mention.

Living in Los Angeles 1980s-1990s, I played in a band with my old pal from the Violators, Kathy Valentine, also Kelly Johnson (Girlschool), Jebin Bruni (Public Image) and Craig Aaronson. Later I played in a band with my old pal from the Violators, Carla Olson, and Mick Taylor (ex-Rolling Stones), Ian McLagan (Faces, Stones), Joe Sublett (Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Depp), George Callins (Textones), Barry Goldberg (Electric Flag), Rick Hemmert, and others.

NOW PLAYING: I also play clubs with various ensembles, performing my original compositions, blues and murder ballads. Sometimes it’s called Jesse Sublett & the Big Three Trio, other times I play with my great pal, Jon Dee Graham.

I also draw and paint and occasionally have an art show. When I’ve got some new work to show I’ll post an announcement here.

19 Responses to ABOUT

  1. Jesse–

    Thanks for your comment on the Just A Song blog entry about Skip James. I will be sure that the author sees it. I thought I recognized your name; I’m pretty sure that I saw you play when I lived in Austin back in the 80s.

    • Damn Jesse, its been a long time. And still with Lois. Just talked to Ed Ward the other day and you came up in the conversation, actually I brought you up and we agreed that your band was a standard of the times. Glad you are writing, that was always your gift. I have written a bit myself but now back into law- I missed the money. Fought forest fires in Oregon for 7 or so years, ran squads, spent 18 days in hospital, almost died and got 2 novels out of it, Now I front a band, “The Folkin’ A’s” that does folkabilly tunes, but is mostly a lab for my compositions. All long stories. I was looking for Skunks songs on the internet and ran into you. Cheers. There were some bass parts I really dug.

  2. If fan of female form, suggest you add/ link/ cling to
    http: vintagesleaze.blogspot.com (I’m profiling artists who drew sleazy work in the 50s and 60s (smartly, not dumbly)
    and link to a few of my interesting babe sites. All legit, not a porn among them. I’m also a fan. Good to know you are rocking. You’ll also like my iggy post of yesterday on http://dulltooldimbulb.blogspot.com.


  3. Pingback: JUNE 10, 2010: BIG HOWLIN WOLF BIRTHDAY JAM « Jesse Sublett's Little Black Book

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  5. hal

    “The Skunks were indicted into the … ”

    Freudian funny.

  6. Joe McSpadden

    Dear Jesse:
    If you receive this message, I hope you will consider talking to me about letting me have another go at the books. Please give me a call at your convenience.
    You inscribed my book that life is full of coincidences… maybe this is one of those.
    Joe McSpadden

    • jessesublett

      Hi Joe,
      Good to hear from you. Currently the Martin Fender books are under option by a producer who is pitching them for a TV series. I still believe in coincidences, though. My memoir is still available.


      • Oh, g0od! Now I won’t have to throw away my TV. Who’s up for the role of Martin? He better have damned good hair.

        • jessesublett

          Yeah, I don’t know, but obviously, good hair is a requisite. Years ago some producers were batting around ideas and thought of Harry Connick, who is terribly handsome but has to wear a rug and almost as bad, is politically conservative and thinks I am an unsavory radical. This is obviously not true as my cat says I taste just fine. On a serious note, they are going out with a hot director and show runner. These guys are big names and it should help, but the business is such a crap shoot. I try not to think about it.

  7. You have to play Taos. We get some people from Austen here. Solar Center, Taos New Mex affiliated with KTAO Radio or Taos Inn.

    • jessesublett

      Hey I am ready. I travel light so my fee is low. I have friends in Santa Fe, maybe they would come and spend a lot of dough. Send me an offer, I’ll bring you some crazy South Austin blues.

  8. Judy Abbe

    Someday I’ll tell you my experience with the Overton Gang back in the ’60′s. I’d rather not tell it over the internet.

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