I’m sure there are so many other dates I accidentally left out I will try to be more accurate or at least slow down on the beer next time.
|25||Taylor Atkinson (acoustic)||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|26||Jason Boland and The Stragglers w/Whiskey Myers||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|27||Mustang Brewing Co. Amber Lager release party featuring Jeff Hobbs and The Jacks||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|27||Jason Boland and The Stragglers w/Randy Crouch||Cain’s Ballroom (Tulsa)|
|2||Bo Phillips (acoustic)||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|3||Jackson Taylor Band||Blue Note|
|4||Red Dirt 4 The Cross: Ordinary Outlaws, Bo Philips Band, Exit 174, Left Foot Sally, Chad Sullins||Tumbleweed (Stillwater)|
|5||Josh Abbott Band||Rusty Spur (Stillwater)|
|5||Taylor Atkinson Band||Wall Street (Duncan)|
|5||Turnpike Troubadours||Eskimo Joe’s (Stillwater)|
|11||Blue Edmondson||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|12||Charlie Robinson||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|12||14th Annual Red Dirt Christmas: Cross Canadian Ragweed, Red Dirt Rangers, Mike McClure Band||Cain’s Ballroom (Tulsa)|
|12||KKAJ Red Dirt Jingle Jam w/ Jason Boland and The Stragglers, No Justice, Whiskey Myers||Heritage Hall (Ardmore)|
|17||Annual Toys for Tots* w/ Randy Rogers Band w/ Sean McConnell||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|18||Cross Canadian Ragweed||Riverwind Casino (Norman)|
|19||Casey Donahew Band||Arbuckle Ballroom (Davis)|
|19||Stoney LaRue w/ Mama Sweet||JT’s Cowtown USA (Tecumseh)|
|31||Jason Boland and The Stragglers||Tumbleweed (Stillwater)|
|31||No Justice w/ Rich O’Toole||Wormy Dog Saloon|
|31||Johnny Cooper (FREE SHOW!!)||Choctaw Casino (Idabel)|
I’m sure there are so many other dates I accidentally left out I will try to be more accurate or at least slow down on the beer next time.
The Latest: Comal County Blue
I’m fresh off of a little vacation and back in time for pre-celebration for Jason Boland and the Stragglers upcoming show at the Wormy Dog Saloon on Thanksgiving night Nov.26, which also happens to be my birthday as well. I’m just going to drop a few lines for this Oklahoma native to show my respects.
Comal County Blue was a much anticipated release in August of 2008 and a sobering moment for most Jason Boland fans after a blood filled polyp obstructed his vocal chords. After a successful surgery and spending a lot of time in silence and then having to retrain his vocal chords to sing, a sigh of relief was delivered. Though sidelined for the release of the album, Comal County Blue still turned heads. The album’s first radio soared to the number one spot and stunned the itunes world.
Comal County Blue has many solid tracks. As soon as you pop in the CD, Son’s and Daughter’s of Dixie delivers banjos and drums and that ole guitar from Boland we all know and love. Boland even gives you glimpse of his past demons in Bottle By My Bed and No Reason In Being Late. His second radio release, The Part’s Not Over, featuring a special quest vocal performance from Robert Earl Keen, is just another reason of why you should own this album. Comal County Blue was one the most celebrated albums in late 2008 and is still making waves. This album is Jason Boland and The Stragglers polished to it’s finest, lyrically and instrumentally as well. I get goose bumps just thinking of what is next for these guys. Outlaw Band reminds me most of why I even began to listen to Jason Boland and The Stragglers written by the late Bob Childers and other greats like Randy Crouch and Layle Stagner.
The Greatest: Somewhere In The Middle
After I got an ear full of Jason Boland and Stragglers’ first albums I didn’t know if they could follow a debut album like 2001′s Pearl Snaps. I was young, fresh out of high school, and wild as the wind running back and forth between SWOSU and Stillwater. But then I herd these lyrics: “You don’t like my music, you don’t like my songs, Say you want to party, say you want to rock-n-roll, that carbon copy music don’t mean a damn to me”.
Sorry, I got a little side tracked, but man, those lyrics from the first track “hank” are amazing and make perfect sense in 2004 and still hold true today. But that song is just the beginning that makes these bourbon legends so unique in country music today. This album is probably in my CD player the most. Even with my vast collection of music, Somewhere In The Middle is most responsible for many hazy nights and trying to get my head straight.
In the song If You Want to Hear A Love Song, Boland sings about needing some love to show some love and in Stand Up To The Man they give you quick insight on not giving up on life and fighting till the end. 12oz. curls is a fun song written by Randy Crouch that any old bar hopping soul should love. Boland and The Stragglers even cover the classic Thunderbird, written by Billy Joe Shaver.
For a special treat, there is a secret song after Hell or Bust by Randy Crouch himself. Even Stoney LaRue jumps in there on the acoustic guitar. This album is a cure for whatever ails you and is one of my all time favorites. Don’t bother skipping any of the tracks because you won’t need too. Fiddle and steel guitar are no novelties with Jason Boland and The Stragglers.
So I hope I have done enough to encourage everyone to come out and see Jason Boland and the Stragglers on Thursday night after gobbling turkey all day and if you see me stumbling around I might let you buy me a beer or two, ’cause it will be my birthday as well.
On May 9th, I found myself at the Wormy Dog again for the rescheduled Reckless Kelly show. As far as I knew it was just Reckless Kelly playing, but around 10 there was a band on stage and it was their good buddies Highspeed Hayride, a foursome from around the Texas/Mexico border. Highspeed Hayride have had their share of hits on the Texas Music Charts and I’m hoping they will come back around very soon because they put on a good show.
As usual, the headlining band didn’t come on exactly when expected but delivered none the less. They opened with the crowd favorite “Ragged As The Road”, which was a hit for them off their latest album “Bulletproof”. There hasn’t been an album these guys have put out that hasn’t had at least four or five big hits for them. Nominated as one of the best live act in Texas by the 2009 Lone Star Music Awards, Reckless Kelly showed they know what they’re doing. Don’t forget they’ve got a background that can be dated back to performing on the Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson when they were 11 and 12 years old… not once, but twice.
Known as the wild ones in the music scene no matter where they are, they do everything in full force and everyone got exactly that Saturday night. There was still a line waiting to get in at 12:30a.m. Reckless Kelly kept the crowed going with all their hits: “Sixgun”, “Motel Cowboy Show”, and “Break My Heart Tonight” just to name a few. I don’t think there is a “country music” instrument that Cody Braun can’t play. Braun was nominated for best musician at the 2009 LSM Awards where he pulled out a mandolin, harmonica, banjo, and even stole the mic from his brother Willy to sing “Wild West Windblown Band”. Ending the night with the hand down crowd favorite, “Crazy Eddies Last Hurrah”, they had the entire elbow-to-elbow crowded room screaming the lyrics and going insane making it one of the most enthusiastic crowds I have seen.
If you missed out on this wild west windblown band then you will get two more chances in the next two months with Cross Canadian Ragweed’s 3rd Annual Music & Mayhem at Eufaula, and Country Fever in Pryor. I’m not going to ride off into the sunset this time but take a deep breathe and leave with my favorite Reckless Kelly lyrics…
“Well it sure didn’t take too long
I woke up one mornin’, she was gone
And the note that she wrote didn’t say “Dear John”
It said, “Goodbye, ******, I’m gone!”
She was a home-grown mountain girl
Raised in a different world.
I was a wanna-be rocker,
She was more into Merle.
And I couldn’t see it just wouldn’t work
And now I’m double fisting longnecks
And grapefruit and Stoli
But I’m never gettin’ over Jolie”
- Crazy Eddie’s Last Hurrah-R.K
To get everyone geared up for the Ryan Bingham and The Dead Horses show at the Wormy Dog Saloon on May 21st, I popped in Ryan Bingham’s new album… well, kinda new album. Released in October of 2007, Mescalito is his first album unless you are lucky enough to get your hands on “Dead Horses”, an album that was a limited release from LoneStarMusic in 2006 and is no longer available.
I first was turned onto Ryan Bingham seeing them perform live on Conan O’Brien and came across Mescalito digging through the KKNG music vault in 2008. I can’t think of anything that isn’t on this album. From banjo’s to accordion’s, this album has an array of instruments. The crazy thing is this album was a coin flip away from not even happening at all. Mescalito has gotten raves from the like of Rolling Stone and a three page feature in the Los Angeles Times and another performance on The Tonight Show.
The album grabs from the beginning with the track “Southside of Heaven”. It’s hard to describe the feeling you get with this track. It’s that feeling you get when you are riding down the road on a peaceful evening, catching the wind in your hands I guess. It keeps going to with “Otherside” and his first radio single “Bread and Water”. After listening to “Baracho Station”, if you don’t feel like a troubadour, a modern day “outlaw”, then you made need to have your ears checked. Mascelito is nothing short of genius. The album grips you and makes you want to hit the road like a “traveling jone’s”.
I look forward to his show. It will be the first live performance I will get to see of this bull riding, Spanish speaking, modern day outlaw. Bingham will also be performing at Country Fever in June as well. This is an album you don’t have to put much thought to in buying it. Just do it and thank me later. It should at least tide you over until Roadhouse Sun comes up out on June 2nd.
The night started off with great openers Daryll Lee Rush and The Dirt Drifters who know how to put on a show. Amongst the elbow room only crowd and the rowdy fans waiting in line to get even with each other at midnight, I sat and watched Stoney do what he does best and belt out one great song after another. He covered Norman Greenbaum with ease. Stoney LaRue and The Arsenals played all the crowd favorites “Empty Glass”,”Down in Flames”, “One Chord Song” and the huge hit for him everyone in the place knew. There’s wasn’t a soul not dancing or singing along myself included to “Oklahoma Breakdown” (written by longtime Oklahoma music scene icon, Mike Hosty of the Hosty Duo).
Stoney grew up listening to his father play bass and after watching this show I don’t think there’s anything else Stoney wants to do. His music and live shows deliver every time. Stoney fired up the crowd playing some new songs that are coming out on his new album. I got goose bumps just thinking about it. If you have a chance to hear him cover a Willie Nelson song it’s as though Willie himself is there singing. Amazing. So far hands down my favorite show from start to finish that Stoney LaRue and The Arsenals have done.
This week I get to jump on the wicked twisted road with Reckless Kelly so stay tuned for that. In the meantime go check out some of Stoney LaRue and the Arsenals live performances on youtube or at stoneylarue.com and wipe the tears from your eyes. He’ll be back soon for Country Fever.
After another weekend out and about for Red Dirt: Live, I caught another Kevin Fowler show which was as good as expected. Maybe the routine needs a little revamping but Fowler’s music is amazing. The night after is what caught my eye.
The Wormy Dog usually books one big draw for the weekend, a great acoustic show for the week, and a band that will ensure at least 300 to 400 people, but it’s not always like a sold out Randy Rogers Show, Eli Young, Wade Bowen or Stoney show where people are lined up at the door to get in. The night after a triple crown Kevin Fowler night, I arrived at the Wormy Dog just in time to catch a few of the songs from the opener, Jesse Jennings Band. The Jesse Jennings band is in no way related to one of the greatest musicians of all time, Waylon Jennings, to my knowledge. They were not too bad from what I caught. Much to my surprise it was more packed than the Kevin Fowler show!
I’m not one to lie and will admit before this show, I knew little of Casey Donahew and his laid back crew. I have had a lot of request for RD:L to do something on these guys for a while, so I did a phone interview that went well. I learned a lot about these guys and their music, so I figured it was time to check out their show. It stood out in my mind how crowded it was and, despite the frat party it was, I enjoyed the show. They had fun with a Vanilla Ice cover and rocked a Kid Rock song (Casey is huge fan) that had the elbow to elbow crowd swaying. “Stockyards” from their debut album, Lost Days, was a big fan favorite along with “White Trash Story” and the big hit that landed them on the Texas Music Charts Best of 2008 “Crazy”. The crowd was in it for the whole show. I didn’t ever see a fan not singing to any of their songs.
They are a young band full of energy and budding talent. If you enjoy a crowd filled with ladies and a few frat guys then Casey Donahew is the show for you. I would pay money to see them again and I am interested in seeing how their next album will turn out.
Anyway it’s Sunday so I’m going to drift off into the sunset, whiskey in hand. I might even try some of those girl fruity drinks but it’s unlikely and, gentlemen, unless it’s a Mexican beer, stop fruiting it!
The day started at 4pm with local Stillwater musicians, Exit 174. And what a surprise, they got their start right there in the “Still” just like so many others we have come to know and love (CCR, Boland, No Justice). Mark McKinney was there laying down the law on partying, as usual, and setting the crowd straight on what is or isn’t a proper party foul.
The biggest surprise for me was the Jackson Taylor Band. He’s just a solid performer who rocked the Lazy E Arena, a real outlaw in the Texas music scene. (Note to self: bring some Jim Beam if you want to party with Jackson Taylor.)
Johnny Cooper stole the show for me. So much energy for such a young and already accomplished artist. Along with Cody Shaw, and the new line-up in the mix, Cooper has been working on a new album up in Nashville and he personally promised this one would turn some heads.
The Bart Crow Band made their performance like always, about the love they have for their music and their fans. They’re another local band… well, a band that started in none other than Stillwater, once again.
No Justice ended the night in a packed Lazy E arena floor. I was impressed with their light show. It was good to see Ordinary Outlaws and Nick Gibson as well as it had been a while since I had gotten to see them perform.
We should be posting interviews from Red Dirt Music Festival this week and, if you’re lucky, you might get to see me ride a mechanical bull for a whole 3 seconds. Till next time, I’m riding off into the sunset with my whiskey bottle in hand: “Quote the Rooster Never More”.
In honor of one of my favorite bands having recently played the Wormy Dog Saloon, I’m giving the latest Kevin Fowler scoop with his new single off his latest album Bring It On. “Cheaper to Keep Her” is climbing the Texas music charts. Released in 2007, this album is solid from start to finish and includes the 2nd most requested song of 2008 “Best Mistake I Ever Made”. The song gained him national recognition as well. With 13 solid tracks, if you have ever had that feeling you’re behind in the game of life just a little then “Long Line of Losers”, “What’s Your Point”, and “Slow Down” just may hit home for many. Then there those honky-tonk songs that Kevin Fowler seems to bring on every album “Me and the Boys”, “I Pulled A Hank Last Night”, “Honky Tonk Junkie” just makes you feel like throwing back a few brews. When Kevin Fowler takes the stage he doesn’t have to demand your attention because he has it already as soon as the first riff is played. Expect nothing less than perfection from a Kevin Fowler show with him dropping hits from start to finish. Last time Fowler was in town he was little under the weather and there is no way you could of seen that as he worked the crowd, flung the microphone around and he even busted out some classics.
**Don’t Miss No Justice at THE Oklahoma Red Dirt Destination, The Wormy Dog Saloon, on 2/28**
My name is Tony “The Rooster” Brown and I am the creator and co-host of Red Dirt: Live. What is Red Dirt: Live you ask? Red Dirt: Live highlights Red Dirt artists both known and upcoming in the Red Dirt/Texas music scene. Each episode will profile a specific band providing viewers with an in depth background into each band, featuring interviews as well as showcase live performances shot exclusively for the show at Oklahoma’s Red Dirt destination, The Wormy Dog Saloon.
Now that I have gotten that out of the way I’ll give you a little background on myself and why I like this genre of music so much. My love of Red Dirt/Texas music started back in 1999 with frequent trips to Stillwater, Oklahoma, the birth place of Red Dirt music. My idols have always been Waylon Jennings, Willie, Cash, the outlaws of country music. They had their own way of doing country music which was totally against the Nashville-way, much like these guys in the Red Dirt/Texas music scene, their lyrics and almost rock-n-roll style is profoundly unique.
My grandfather actually enjoyed Red Dirt more than the new pop-country songs that were out there which meant a lot to me growing up because I idolized him as a musician. Working for 93.3 KKNG got me even more involved with the Red Dirt/Texas music scene. I became friends with a lot of the artists and realized how down to earth they were, just like me. When I hear the lyrics, it’s like I’m back home in my one horse town, backroadin’ and livin’ free.
I’ll be using this blog to post interviews from the road and keeping you up to date with albums of the week, upcoming shows and my big trip to CMT in Nashville and let you all know what’s going on and with Red Dirt: Live and the music and musicians of the Red Dirt/Texas music scene.