"A Top Music Book of 2013"-Uncut
"I am utterly blown away by Calling Me Home.
-Bobby Braddock, Country Music Hall of Fame Songwriter
Author, Down in Orburndale, A Songwriter's Youth in Old Florida.
"Bob Kealing's Calling Me Home takes the reader from the present to the past and back again, conveying a vivid document of Gram Parsons's life and career...There are lots of surprises."
-Holly George-Warren, author Public Cowboy #1: The Life and Times of Gene Autrey
"Thankfully, Kealing forgoes the familiar to dig deeper in 'Calling Me Home,'...a welcome new definition of a cult figure who is long overdue for one."
Jim Abbott, Orlando Sentinel, Tribune Newspapers
"Kealing has drawn on dozens of new interviews, uncovering information that even Gram Parsons' most rabid fans will find fresh and revealing."
Dave Carew, Underground Nashville
"Mesmerizing...Kealing offers a compulsively readable and intimate portrait."
Henry L. Carrigan Jr., Bookpage
"Bob Kealing has done some fine original reporting...breaks some new ground on a story of as vital and original a musician as this country has produced."
Jeff Baker, The Oregonian
From the Author
Calling Me Home sits at a crossroads between Literary Journalism and little-known Southern history; a place where I've always loved to be.
With many new primary source interviews of Gram Parsons's family, friends, love interests and collaborators from every phase of his life and career, letters and memoirs from Parsons and his sister "Little Avis," and rare photographs and memorable discoveries, even stalwart fans will find new things within these pages. This is not a Parsons biography per se, there are several fine ones in print. This is a literary journey to the heart of the Cosmic American South where Parsons's love of music caught fire seeing iconic Elvis, he wrote his first songs, played in garage bands, and eventually returned to make his most historic recording with the Byrds. Years later, when Parsons hit his stride with musical soul mate Emmylou Harris, it was in the South that Parsons's vision received its first warm receptions.
No more should Gram Parsons be defined by the legend that blew up surrounding his premature death in the California desert and the tragicomic events that came after.
Calling Me Home
dwells mostly in the "Low Country" where Gram Parsons's legacy as a pioneering visionary is celebrated, and his music still holds a kind of transformative, healing power. You'll see.
As a working journalist in Orlando, I toiled on this book in my spare time while covering the sensational Casey Anthony drama from the first day until the end of her controversial trial. This book was a most welcome change of pace.
I'm proud to share with you the fruits of five years of research, travels, interviews and writing