This weekend, Nighttown in Cleveland Heights hosts J.D. Souther for a special two-night engagement, as the much-lauded musician performs at 8:30 pm on Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10.
Although born in Detroit on November 2, 1945, J.D. Souther spent his formative years in Amarillo, Texas. That upbringing likely contributed to the development of a country-rock appreciation that made him a major influence on big ticket bands of the 1970s, including Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee the Eagles (he collaborated with friend and former Longbranch Pennywhistle bandmate Glen Frey on tracks including "Best of My Love" and "Heartache Tonight") and Linda Ronstadt (producing and performing on 1973's Don't Cry Now, and penning "Prisoner in Disguise" and "Faithless Love"). As a session musician, vocalist and guitarist Souther has appeared on recordings by Don Henley and James Taylor, among others.
At the urging of then head of Asylum Records, David Geffen, Souther joined Chris Hillman (of the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers) and Richie Furay (of Buffalo Springfield and Poco) to form a country-rock supergroup of sorts with the Souther-Hillman-Furay Band. The group released a pair of solo albums and charted with "Fallin' In Love" before disbanding in 1975. Through the years, Souther has recorded solo albums that highlight his smooth spin on the country-rock genre, including 1972's John David Souther, 1976's Black Rose, 1979's You're Only Lonely and 1984's Home by Dawn. The title track ballad of his 1979 release reached Number Seven on the Billboard pop charts. Souther returned in 2008 with the jazzy If the World Was You and this year's A Natural History, which includes stripped down versions of some of the songwriter's most notable songs, including those he wrote for the Eagles and Ronstadt, and the best of his solo material. The intimate material will resonate perfectly amid the cozy Nighttown environs.