As times get lean for alternative newsweeklys, their penchant to dispose of any and all journalistic class, fact-based reporting, or positive counterpoints to their dubious assertions goes out the window in lieu of mercilessly ripping into entire segments of artists without a single word of objectivity or credit where credit is due.
The problem with the whole Texas Music/Texas Country/Red Dirt “scene” is just that—what to call it. Texas Country is not really Red Dirt, even though the two regularly get lazily lumped together. Texas Country and Texas Music are separate things as well, but once again get summarily bundled. Yet all of these things are intertwined.
For six years straight, the Turnpike Troubadours have celebrated a self-appointed holidays each Spring called Dia Del Gallo at the historic Floore’s Country Store on the outskirts of San Antonio. The city has always been a crossroads of cultures, and the rooster (“gallo” in Spanish) has always been the band’s official mascot.
The 5th Annual Medicine Stone Music Festival focusing on the best of Red Dirt music and sponsored by the Turnpike Troubadours, and Jason Boland & The Stragglers will once again commence at the Diamondhead Resort in Talequah, Oklahoma. This year the event will be held on September 21st-23rd, and they have just revealed the fest’s initial lineup.
Bri Bagwell, Charley Crockett, Dalton Domino, Dave Kay, Flatland Cavalry, Jacob Tovar, Jamie Lin Wilson, Jason Boland and the Stragglers, Jonny Burke, Kaitlin Butts, Lucero, Medicine Stone, MIke McClure, Randy Crouch & Flying Horse, Red Shahan, Shane Smith and the Saints, Shinyribs, Sunny Sweeney, the Red Dirt Rangers, The Washitas, Thomas Trapp, Turnpike Troubadours
In many sectors, the future of country music is rife with uncertainty as you’re forced to squint hard at the current tiers of top stars and up-and-comers and wonder where this all will lead us years down the road. But when it comes to the Texas country scene, there is no cause for concern for who’s gonna fill the shoes.
A traditional like few others will transpire once again this summer when Willie Nelson celebrates the 4th of July by gathering together friends and family for his annual 4th of July Picnic. For the third year in a row, the event will be held at the Circuit of the Americas speedway just south of Austin, TX, and will include many long-standing invitees.
Asleep at the Wheel, Billy Joe Shaver, David Allan Coe, Folk Uke, Insects vs. Robots, Jamey Johnson, Johnny Bush, Kacey Musgraves, Lukas Nelson & The Promise of the Real, Margo Price, Raelyn Nelson Band, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Sheryl Crow, Steve Earle, Turnpike Troubadours, Willie Nelson, Willie Nelson 4th of July Picnic
From California to Brooklyn, to the deep South and interior West, Oklahoma’s Turnpike Troubadours will be embarking on an extensive U.S. tour starting March 30th in Baton Rouge, and ending in August at the Braun Brothers Reunion in Idaho. 39 dates in all will be encompassed in the tour over the next six months.
Editor’s Note: This is a contribution to Saving Country Music by Zac McDaniel who is a freelance writer. Zac is also a rancher and small business owner from Oklahoma. Along with immersing himself in the music of others he is also an aspiring songwriter. He enjoys spending time with his wife, children and Gibson guitar. […]
There’s no stopping the Turnpike Troubadours. The mainstream country music industry may continue to turn a blind eye to their regional and national success, but that won’t slow them down at all. As they continue to put on one of the most engaging live shows in country music, the crowds at their shows continue to swell.
Zane Williams is a smart one, and like many others are recognizing, he understands that the new trend in country music, is actual country music. And this has been exemplified in the Texas scene as much as anywhere. Zane Williams senses that people want by God country music again, and that’s exactly what he delivers on the aptly titled ‘Bringin’ Country Back.’
If your a recent Turnpike Troubadours convert and never got a chance to own their very first debut album Bossier City, you better jump on the opportunity now because for a limited time they’re making it available to the public once again, with proceeds going to a good cause.
Dolly Shine is a young, hungry, and adept Texas country band in the truest sense, shifting between bluesy rock and traditional country, and calling regularly on the fiddle to carry songs with the strong influences of Texas music right out front for listeners to latch onto.
No, it’s not a Nirvana cover, but it is quite a surprise from the Turnpike Troubadours, who usually tend to leave their fans salivating for new music between album releases with agonizing impatience. Without pretense or explanation, the Oklahoma natives dropped a new single called “Come As You Are” on Friday, and it has folks all abuzz and for good reason.
Aaron Lewis, the frontman for the emo noise band Staind, whose been dabbling in country music for years now, has just signed to Dot records—a division of the Big Machine Label Group—and will be releasing a new record called Sinner on September 16th. And as part of the announcement, Aaron has released a country protest song called “That Ain’t Country.”
There’s not much worse than having a hankering for some new music from one of your favorite artists, but feeling like you’ve been waiting forever for it to happen. There are many reasons an artist or band may have a delay in output. But dammit, sometimes you feel like you just can’t wait. Here’s a few folks that it feels like are past due for new projects.
Now that we are well into May, many people are wondering where the announcement for Willie Nelson’s annual 4th of July Picnic is. The country music institution, started in 1972 with the Dripping Springs Reunion (not officially held on the 4th) has been going strong ever since, despite skipping a couple of years here and there.
Right now, Texas and Oklahoma is being robbed of its female talent from Nashville and the two coasts. And these women are regularly sucked up into a system that absconds with their creative freedom, sexualizes their image, and drops them unceremoniously whenever their commercial viability is perceived to be spent.
American Aquarium, Aubrie Sellers, Billy Joe Shaver, Brennen Leigh, Bri Bagwell, Courtney Patton, Hot Club of Cowtown, Jamie Lin Wilson, Jason Boland and the Stragglers, Kacey Musgraves, Lee Ann Womack, Maren Morris, Medicine Stone, Miranda Lambert, Randy Rogers Band, Ryan Engleman, Samantha Crain, Shane Smith and the Saints, Sister C, Stoney LaRue, Sunny Sweeney, The Quebe Sisters, Turnpike Troubadours
Scheduled to take place this year between April 18th to the 23rd, the Larry Joe Taylor Festival will welcome an estimated 50,000 people through the gates over 6 days, and feature music on three stages from over 50 bands at the Melody Mountain Ranch in Stephenville, TX. One of the biggest and oldest music festivals in the country, Larry Joe Taylor Fest has been going on for over a quarter century.
But what’s the fun of getting to the top when you’ve compromised everything to get there? Despite some declaring the #1 for “Backroad Song” as a victory for Texas country, it is anything but. It was Granger’s abandonment of Texas country and the values of that scene, and walking away from the decent songwriting evidenced earlier in his career that finally got him the commercial success he has clearly craved.
Turnpike Troubadours frontman Evan Felker is one of the most respected songwriters in Texas Country/Red Dirt and beyond, including just having his song “The Bird Watchers” named Saving Country Music’s Song of the Year for 2015. But after numerous drunken performances, some fans are in an uproar, while others are reaching out with sympathy and concern for the songwriter.