By Chris M. Junior
The Gram Parsons Foundation first formed in 2004, but this year, it is finally celebrating its official launch by presenting a star-studded concert in Austin, Texas, during the same week as the South by Southwest music conference/festival.
Taking place March 14 in the parking lot of Austin's hip Hotel San Jose, the concert is set to begin at noon and feature such SXSW showcasing acts as Blitzen Trapper, Great Lake Swimmers, Cory Chisel and the Wandering Sons as well as Brendan Benson, who will be joined by Eric Burdon.
That night, a VIP fundraiser will take place in Hotel San Jose's courtyard, with Polly Parsons — the daughter of the late Byrds/Flying Burrito Brothers guitarist and president of the GPF— among the scheduled speakers.
The mission statement of the Gram Parsons Foundation, according to its Web site, is "to support musicians and artists worldwide with addiction and recovery." Parsons died in 1973 at age 26 from an apparent drug overdose.