This spring, starting April 27th in Kansas City, Missouri, Kinky Friedman, author, musician, politician, and self-proclaimed Governor of the Heart of Texas, will be performing dates throughout the Midwest and East Coast as part of his Springtime for Kinky Tour of 2011. Often returning to places he has not visited in two decades, the Kinkster will appear solo (primarily) and promote his most recent books, What Would Kinky Do? and Heroes of a Texas Childhood. There will be a book signing at each venue.
Buoyed by his Go West Young Kinky Tour last spring and his monster appearance on the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in October, Kinky will take his show to many of his favorite American cities. Playing the songs for which he is best known, such as “They Ain't Making Jews Like Jesus Anymore” and “Sold American,” reading passages from his books, and carrying on his hilarious running commentary on the state of the union, Kinky, the prodigal son of Texas, will, indeed, return to the scenes of his crimes of years gone by.
Though years have passed since the last full-on Texas Jewboys show, Kinky continues to be associated with that infamous band of his early career, partly because of his long friendship with Bob Dylan (Kinky did, of course, travel with the Rolling Thunder Revue), but mostly because of the band’s total outrageousness and those legendary songs. On the projects list for 2011 is a Willie Nelson CD of Kinky's songs, which will be no less than the third tribute album to Kinky and his work. Willie, who has a new Sony record deal, and who has been swapping stories and playing chess with Kinky for decades, will confirm these tunes as American standards.
Meanwhile, Kinky continues to “spit out books like sunflower seeds,” with a brand new deal to co-write one with old pal Billy Bob Thornton. And he is now being immortalized onstage with a play called Becoming Kinky . . . The World According to Kinky Friedman, written by Ted Swindley, who created the long-running hit Always . . . Patsy Cline, and starring up-and-comer Jesse Dayton.
Kinky may be finished with politics, but politics may not be finished with Kinky. He continues to be a popular guest on cable news channels, appearing with hosts as diverse as John Seigenthaler and Bill O’Reilly, and his regular contributions to Texas Monthly never fail to take proper shots at the insanity of Texas politics. He also contributes to such national media as The New York Times and Playboy, more often than not skewing deserving politicians wherever they may be.
And that’s not all in 2011: an Australian tour is on the agenda for June. Kinky will be joined by long-time Brian Wilson collaborator Van Dyke Parks, as the two old friends visit Kinky's second favorite continent. But in the meantime . . .
Springtime for Kinky Tour 2011
Wed., April 27 KANSAS CITY, MO Knuckleheads
Thurs., April 28 LITTLE ROCK, AR Juanita's
Fri., April 29 ST. LOUIS, MO Off Broadway
Sat., April 30 OKLAHOMA CITY, OK The Blue Door
Sun., May 1 NEWPORT, KY (CINCINNATI, OH) Southgate House
Mon., May 2 NASHVILLE, TN 3rd and Lindsley
Tues., May 3 CLEVELAND, OH Wilbert's
Thurs., May 5 MILWAUKEE, WI Shank Hall
Sat., May 7 BERWYN (CHICAGO), IL Fitzgerald's
Sun., May 8 PHILADELPHIA, PA World Cafe Live
Mon., May 9 NEW YORK, NY Highline Theater
Tues., May 10 ROCHESTER, NY Water Street
Fri., May 13 ALEXANDRIA, VA (WASHINGTON, DC) Birchmere
Sat., May 14 WOODSTOCK, NY Levon Helm's Midnight Ramble