Joel Rafael & Jack Tempchin

May 11 2024 - 7:30 PM

Joel Rafael & Jack Tempchin

Joel Rafael has been writing and performing for over fifty years, beginning as a drummer with his first band, a jazz combo, in the sixth grade. His bio takes us on a tour of up and down the West Coast, including the Troubadour and Laurel Canyon, eventually landing in Encinitas, where he also began a lifetime friendship with Eagles songwriter Jack Tempchin. During the late 1970s, Joel performed around Southern California in various groups including as a duo with Rosie Flores. In the early 1980s, he found a niche in San Diego County as an opener for nationally touring acts for several local promoters. Shortly after, in 1981, he recorded his first album Dharma Bums, and in the early 1990s, the Joel Rafael Band was born, resulting in three albums.

Having performed for years at the Woody Guthrie Festival, Joel released an album of all Woody Guthrie tunes, Woodeye, in 2003, which included one song for which he composed the music, and one original talking piece combined with a Woody Guthrie song.  In 2005, he recorded another album of Guthrie songs, Woodyboye, and this one included four additional Woody Guthrie co-writes with lyrics given to him by Woody’s daughter, Nora Guthrie.

As a solo performer and with his band, Joel has opened shows and shared stages with artists including Emmylou Harris, Jackson Browne, Joan Baez, John Lee Hooker, Arlo Guthrie, Bonnie Raitt, John Trudell, Laura Nyro, Kris Kristofferson, Dar Williams, Ramblin’ Jack Elliot, Odetta, and Taj Mahal.

In 2015, Joel  released a ninth album, Baladista, delivering ten essential ballads that embrace and celebrate the human spirit and reflect the half-century journey of an American songwriter. Rose Avenue, released in 2019, Joel’s latest work, gracefully defines him and his contribution to the American canon. The ten-song masterpiece includes nine originals that reflect the honest accounting of a man in his 70th year, with a lifetime’s insight into the songs he writes; as well as a full measure of gratitude for what has been, and what lies ahead.

Jack Tempchin is a legendary hit songwriter, whose compositions Peaceful Easy Feeling and Already Gone are synonymous with the Southern California sound. These songs can be found on the Eagles’ compilation Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975, which the RIAA named the Best-Selling U.S. Album of the 20th Century.

Jack’s songs have been performed or recorded by artists including George Jones, Buck Owens, Emmylou Harris, Glen Campbell, Jackson Browne, Dwight Yoakam, Linda Ronstadt, Patty Loveless, Trisha Yearwood, Tanya Tucker, Richie Havens, Sammy Kershaw, Kate Wolf, Tom Rush, and more. Jack has also performed live with three Eagles: Glenn Frey, Joe Walsh and Timothy B. Schmit. He’s also played with greats like Poco, Jackson Browne, J.D. Souther, Chicago, Chris Hillman, Herb Pedersen, Jimmy Webb, Al Kooper, Kenny Loggins, Karla Bonoff, Christopher Cross and Dolly Parton, among others. In the mid-1990s, Jack toured as the opening act for Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band at major venues including Radio City Music Hall and The Hollywood Bowl.

In the 1980s, Jack co-wrote a dozen radio hits for Glenn Frey’s solo career. Tempchin/Frey co-writes include Top 40 hits Smuggler’s Blues and You Belong to The City for the original Miami Vice TV show soundtrack. These two songs were later sampled in the 1990s by platinum rappers Coolio (Nature of the Business) and Jay-Z (City Is Mine). Jack’s songs are featured in such films as The Big Lebowski and Thelma & Louise.

In 2019, Jack was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in New York City. His latest album, One More Time With Feeling, was released on Jimmy Buffett’s Mailboat record label.