A Pop Zelig On Screen and Off: J D Souther on ‘Nashville’ and His Colorful Career

From The New York Times:

If you’re going to create a series with a savvy take on the music business, it helps to have someone on hand who’s seen it from just about every angle. Exhibit A: J D Souther, the singer, songwriter and sometime actor who currently can be seen lending a graceful believability to Watty White, the country music sage he plays on ABC’s “Nashville.”

Q. How did you get involved in “Nashville”?

A. I was in New York a few months ago playing Jazz at Lincoln Center and had dinner with a bunch of people. [The series creator] Callie Khouri was there with T Bone [Burnett, Ms. Khouri’s husband and the executive music producer for the series]. Callie said she’d written a show about Nashville and I said, “Oh great, when the time comes to cast it I’d love to see it.” So they sent me a script and I really loved this part.

Q. You’ve described Watty White as a Greek chorus — what did you mean by that?

A. He kind of shows up occasionally and provides some perspective and some clarity. I don’t think it’s based on any one person but the way I see it, it’s sort of a composite of possibly Harlan Howard, Cowboy Jack Clement and I think my friend T Bone, too.

Continue reading the rest of the story on The New York Times