Steve Fromholz, Farm Aid (7/4/1986) (Austin, TX)
According to Steven’s sister Angela, there will be a short, graveside service at Ft. McKavett Cemetery at Ft. McKavett, Texas at 2:00 p.m. this Friday, January 24th. It is not a private ceremony, and the family welcomes and those who wish to attend. Ft. McKavett is about 22 miles from Menard, TX. There will be a small reception at the McKavett Fire Station which adjoins the cemetery after the services.
Steven Fromholz, a gifted and esteemed songwriter who was named poet laureate of Texas in 2007, has died, according to his family. He was 68.
Fromholz’s “I’d Have to Be Crazy,” which was covered by Willie Nelson, was probably his best-known work, though “Texas Trilogy” – an epic narrative centered around central Texas Bosque County – was his career-defining piece, a richly detailed and characterized trio of songs (“Daybreak,” “Train Ride” and “Bosque County Romance”) that was covered by his admirer Lyle Lovett Lovett, who called Fromholz a “friend and teacher,” said “Texas Trilogy” “isn’t a song, it’s a transcendent Texas bible, a local setting with universal meaning.”
“Steven Fromholz and his work will be remembered, enjoyed and studied as music and literature forever,” Lovett said. “His insight into human nature was equaled only by his ability to write about it in such detail that he made his listeners feel as if they were standing in the shoes of his characters, seeing what they saw, feeling what they felt.”
Fromholz was born in Temple. He attended North Texas State before joining the Navy. After his discharge he headed to California, where he started writing poetry and fell under the spell of folk music in the ’60s, which is when he formed the duo Frummox with Dan McCrimmon in Colorado. The duo recorded one little-heard album called “Here to There,” which was released in the late ’60s. It included Fromholz’s enduring “Texas Trilogy.”
After a pair of albums, the duo split, and Fromholz began recording as a solo artist. In addition to his work as a songwriter, Fromholz became a beloved river guide in Big Bend, where his gift for storytelling made him a popular navigator.
He drew renewed attention in 1998 when Lovett covered “Texas Trilogy” as well as Fromholz’s playful “Bears.”
Fromholz suffered a severe stroke in 2003, which pulled him away from the stage for several years. But he recovered and continued to write, record and perform until the end of his life.