Blaze Foley has long been celebrated by the Austin music community as a master songwriter. At the time of his murder in 1989, Foley (real name Michael David Fuller) was little known outside of Austin’s renegade songwriter circles.  In recent years, Blaze’s reputation has rightfully grown.  Lucinda Williams’ “Drunken Angel” and Townes Van Zandt’s “Blaze’s Blues” are personal tributes to Foley that have added to a legacy that was once nearly forgotten. 

                   Portrait by Robert Hurst

Foley's songs have been covered by Merle Haggard, John Prine, Lyle Lovett and countless others.

Born in Arkansas in 1949 Foley started performing at an early age his families’ gospel act called the Fuller Family.  He led a colorful and storied life. Even in Austin, a city of non-conformists, Foley stood out.   He slept on friends’ couches or on the pool tables in clubs.  Periodically banned (if only temporarily) by many Austin clubs, he made the Austin Outhouse his surrogate home.

Above all, Foley is remembered for the stark honesty of his songs.  They tapped emotions so deep, they sometimes reduced his lumbering frame to tears while performing.   From aching love songs to provocative political commentary, Foley’s songs reflected his uncompromising artistic vision.

The Rise & Fall of Blaze Foley
By Joe Nick Patoski

“The Duct Tape Messiah” Larry Monroe’s Article on Blaze’s Death

Derelict in Duct Tape Shoes by Michael Corcoran

Blaze Foley My Space Page

Steve-O’s Blaze Tribute Site

Blaze Tribute Site