In his new memoir Beaumonster, Jesse Dayton delivers Outlaw Country tales in a fantastic manner from behind the scenes in the Outlaw Country, Punk, and Americana music scenes. Jesse is uniquely experienced to tell these stories as he, of course, lived them, but also is genre-defying, multi-platform artist that continues to deliver with each project he outputs.
Jesse’s music catalog has long been defined by his background and roots in Beaumont, Texas, yet his mind and spirit are encapsulated by his long-time residency in Austin. The old mantra of “Keep Austin Weird” comes to mind when I think about Jesse and how his career and music have evolved. With a knack for being in the right place at the right time (with the also right amount of hard work and dedication), Jesse takes the reader on a fascinating journey through his meetings and collaborations with Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash, John Doe & Exene of X, Mike Ness of Social Distortion, Rob Zombie, the Supersuckers and countless others. It is great to see the curtain pulled back a little an to hear JD’s take on his experiences. That’s not to say this is some type of rumor-mongering, tell all, much to the contrary. In Beaumonster: Dayton delivers tales from his perspective with respect for his subjects and respect for the life of a traveling, gypsy musician. He even tells it like it is when it’s not so flattering to himself (see Dick Dale strings story).
One of my favorite parts of the book is the way Jesse shows his love for his wife Emily, his son Sam, and his other family. It is clear that family is important to JD, and he tugs at the old heartstrings by showing multiple ways how much he loves his parents, Emily and Sam, and many others.
It would not be a Jesse Dayton written word project without some political talk. If you follow him on social media, you know that JD is opinionated yet open minded to those who might disagree with him. In all fairness, I agree with most everything he said, although I tend to me a little further left. But, even in the political sections of Beaumonster, Jesse Dayton delivers his stories and ideas with humor and fun.
I first really became a fan of Jesse’s music on the inaugural Outlaw Country Cruise. Then, when my wife and I met him, we became even bigger fans of Jesse Dayton the person. We have continued to follow and watch his career just keep on going and rising. I highly recommend that music fans of any stripe read this book. Also, get out and see ol’ Jesse the next time he is in your town. You won’t be disappointed, as this dude brings it every single song of every single night.