Musician Spotlight: Graham Weber

Jun 27, 2023

A seasoned musician, Graham Weber has released six solo studio and two live albums, as well as band releases with Restos, So, Long Problems, and critically acclaimed, Western Youth. He has toured North America and Europe, and supported many of his songwriting heroes including Guy Clark, Slaid Cleaves, Todd Snider, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott and Alejandro Escovado, among others.

Since 2016, Graham has been the artistic director for nonprofit The House of Songs – an organization that has created artist collaborations across 33 countries in an effort to bridge cultures and manifest international collaborations in music. An Austinite since 2004 and just genuinely a peace lovin’ dude, Graham appears casual in what everyone else recognizes as relentless devotion to a mission to inspire and support music and its creators – the heartbeat of Austin, and to many, the world.

We sat down with Graham to discuss what brought him to MTF, his experience, outlook, and what’s to come from him in 2023:

What inspired you to start playing music?

I always loved listening to music and was an audiofile since before I can remember. In school, singing was the only thing I seemed to excel at. I had taken guitar lessons off and on through my youth, and when I figured out girls thought it was cool I started playing in front of people. When I was living in my car in Los Angeles in 1999, I saw Todd Snider play a solo show at McCabe’s in Santa Monica (a few blocks up from the Rite Aid Parking lot where I “lived”). The songs were great, the stories were great, the show was transformative for me in the way that I saw something that I could do. I busked, but he was doing original songs and had the one man troubadour show down to a beautiful science. I started writing my own songs not too long after and dedicated myself to making a career out of it.

Who are some of your musical inspirations?

I’m a songwriter / lyric guy first and foremost when it comes to most of the music I make. John Prine, Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Randy Newman, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Warren Zevon… as well as Wilco (Jeff Tweedy), Counting Crows (Adam Durtiz), and Magnolia Electric Company (Jason Molina). That’s a lot of dudes, but I can also point to Fiona Apple, Regina Spektor, Phoebe Bridgers as artists that inspire me with their writing.

That being said, I listen to a lot of old jazz and standards (Cy Coleman, Johnny Mercer), old country music, and great lyricists in hip hop spanning from the late 80s through the early 2000s.

What was the injury that brought you to MTF and how did the injury affect your music?

I was having a lot of discomfort with my left hand and wrist, and I didn’t know what was happening. I didn’t have health insurance, and I was pretty scared that I would need surgery and wouldn’t be able to play guitar or piano. If I couldn’t play, I could still sing, but for a good portion of my shows I didn’t have the option of bringing a band or sideman… economically it didn’t make sense.

What was your experience with receiving care through MTF and your recovery afterwards?

My friend Graham Wilkinson had been treated by Dr. Alton Barron, and was a beneficiary of MTF’s generosity. We were having lunch and he was telling me how MTF had helped him with hand surgery and he linked me up with Dr. Alton. I went in for a consultation, he checked me out, and thankfully he determined that I did not need surgery. He wrote me a prescription, gave me some advice on how to proceed, and he said if it didn’t improve to schedule a follow up appointment. The problem went away and I’ve been fine ever since. The relief of knowing I didn’t need surgery, or that the problem (while uncomfortable at the time) wasn’t in fact a major injury or systemic of something chronic was in itself a great relief. And I didn’t have to pay a dime, where if I’d have gone to see a specialist without insurance it would’ve been a financial burden that I wouldn’t have been able to take on. I’m incredibly grateful for the care and time that was given to me.

What’s coming up for you?

My band Restos will be starting a residency at C-Boys in Austin, TX throughout the month of August, and we will release our first album on September 29th at The Continental Club. I’ll be continuing to tour internationally and will be performing in New York City in November at the Underwater Sunshine Music Festival.

Where can people find out more about you and your music?

Graham Weber (solo)

Restos (band)
RESTOS Website
Restos IG
Restos FB


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