Ramblin' Rhodes: Goodbye to Precious Jewell.

Somehow in the busy start of this summer I missed the obituary of a wonderful friend named James Edward “Jim” Jewell of Grovetown, who died June 19. He would have been 90 on Sept. 8.

Customers knew him for 30 years as the owner of Jim’s Lawn Service, but thousands of music fans in the Augusta area knew him better for his uncountable appearances playing guitar for many years with Eryn Eubanks’ Family Fold band.

He and guitarist Mike Merritt came to be known as adopted members of the Eubanks family, performing with Eryn, Patrick and Ricie Eubanks on canal boat cruises and at music festivals, schools, churches and area restaurants and nightclubs.

There was no mistaking Jewell’s unmistakable voice singing classic numbers like “Just Because,” “Nobody’s Darlin’ But Mine” and “I Overlooked An Orchid (While Searching For a Rose)” and for his kind nature which prompted the nickname “Precious Jewell.”

John Doren of Martinez, Ga., said it well on the legacy.com site in noting, “The loss of Mr. Jewell is a loss for all of us. He was a good and decent man and an inspiration to all who met him. It was an honor to play guitar with and learn from him, an authentic and honest musical voice. In his singing and playing, he could define a song. When he performed, there was a depth and directness that seemed to convey exactly what the author of a song intended. His encyclopedic knowledge of several musical genres was a continual wonder and delight.”

--- Don Rhodes of The Augusta Chronicle

Thursday, July 20th, 2017.