Feb 29, 2012

I would walk 100 miles, And I would walk 100 more...

Texas Country artist Granger Smith has again partnered with the Boot Campaign and announced his plans to complete his second annual 100 mile walk for the troops. The 100 mile walk that goes from south Austin to Fort Hood in Killen, Tx  will begin on April 15th. To see more about it go here http://www.grangersmith.com/index.php?page=news&n_id=660

Feb 27, 2012

Yet Another Granger Smith Video "Letters to London"

Texas Country musician Granger Smith and his crew have put out another new music video this week. If you are keeping track it makes about the 176589th video they have released this year already. This one for his song "Letters to London". As he does quite often, this video is an acoustic version of the song and it is awesome. Call me a traditionalist but I love simple music, a guitar and a tune are all you need. Granger pulls this off better than anyone out there. Also, if you go to his website, he is giving away 3, yes 3, different versions of the song for download. Go check it out.


Feb 23, 2012

John David Kent, a man absolutely worthy of 3 names

     Allow me to lift up the rock that you have obviously been under if you haven't yet heard of John David Kent. With only one serious release under his belt in the Texas Music scene, this guy is already making quite a name (or even 3) for himself. His self titled album, released in May of last year, has already produced a couple of radio friendly hits.

     His songs " My Girl" & "Back to the Country" have both had a tremendous amount of success on the Texas Music charts.  "My Girl" is a devotional to all of those beautiful, slightly tomboy, redneck girls that every redneck boy dreams of. "Back to the Country" is what seems to be a semi self-portrait of a song detailing John's route back home to Texas.  The album is an amazing mix of  rock/bluegrass/country/americana that from song to song would be right at home on Texas radio, mainstream country, and even rock radio stations. Not really surprising seeing how JDK took a rather long unconventional detour to get to the Texas Music scene.

     John was a bit of a rocker in his younger years. As part of the rock band Radish he performed with Ben Kweller and had a moderately successful career. According to his website Kent and Kweller toured together with such acts as My Morning Jacket, and Incubus and toured on Lollapalooza with Korn and Tool. That in itself is a pretty impressive musical resume'. When things wound down with Radish John went home and settled down in Texas.

     After a while back in Texas John noticed that most of the music he was writing was different. He has said a lot of the music was "coming out with a southern flavor" and the progression into a more country sound was fairly natural and easy. The resulting album was something refreshing to John and Texas Music fans alike. 

     John was forced to take a little time off recently with some vocal problems. Constant touring will do that. But through his Facebook and Twitter he has assured his fans that he is recovered and ready to get back on the road. The down time has allowed him some time in the studio though, and he says he has been working on some new material. I for one, cant wait to hear it. Or see him back on the road. I saw him back in December, just weeks before he took his time off. He took time after the show that night to talk with me and my wife and was legitimately thankful that we were fans. He even stopped us on the way out to give us a signed drumstick. Great guy! He has quickly became a favorite of mine, and many other Texas Music fans. Do yourself a favor and make him one of yours.
                                  JOHN DAVID KENT "MY GIRL"

check him out here

Feb 16, 2012

CoJo... get 'em boy!

     Still a young pup at 23, Cody Johnson may still be a relative new comer to the Texas music scene, but that hasn't stopped him from quickly becoming a top dog. In a few short years he has gone from an opening act to headliner packing in large crowds at bar rooms and dance halls all across Texas. His honest and heartfelt lyrics, coupled with the raw energy in his stage shows, quickly solidified a place for Cody at the head of the pack.

     He formed his first band in high school and after graduating he hit the circuit of Texas honky tonks and bar rooms, paying his dues and honing his craft. He isn’t cliché and nitchy like some of the "artists" cashing in on the Red Dirt scene right now today. His music has an old school true country feel to it that seems to pay homage to the true troubadours that came before him. Cody has listed George Strait, Pat Green and Willie Nelson as some of the artists that influenced him early on. That’s a pretty good group of guys to pull inspiration from and it shows in the honest and real lyrics in his songs.

     His live shows are fierce. I have been lucky enough to see him in concert and it was unreal. He hits the stage with a passion for music and a raw energy that keeps him running 1000 miles an hour through his entire set. Cody has said that there was a time where he was unsure if music was what he was meant to do. But the roar of a crowd at the legendary south Texas venue Greune Hall one night changed all that. When he walked out and asked "Are y'all ready to party tonight?" and people just went nuts, he was hooked he told his band "This is it boys. I'll never do anything else."  I would like to thank that Greune Hall crowd that night for that. He is currently co-headlining a tour with fellow Texas music chart topper Kyle Park and from what I hear, this is a show that you do not want to miss.

     His first CD "Black & White Label" helped pay some bills and keep the band on the road for a while. But it was Cody's second CD “Six Strings One Dream" that contained the break out hits that would push Cody into the fore front Texas music scene and make him a regular attendee on the Texas Music Charts.  "Nobody to Blame" "Pray for Rain" "Texas Kind of Way" were all top 10 hits for Cody with "Texas Kind of Way" going to #1. The current single "Diamond In My Pocket” off of his most recent release “A Different Day" has gone into the top 10 as well, sitting at #5 as I write this. Cody is on one hell of a roll these days and it seems he is just chomping at the bit for more.

                          CODY JOHNSON "DIAMOND IN MY POCKET"


Feb 14, 2012

A Valentine Message From Granger Smith

    Today, over on his website Granger posted a letter to his fans. A story behind the recording of his live album "Live at The Chicken" released today, and a very sincere thank you. Check it out at the link below.

The story behind The Chicken

It's Valentine's Day, Show Some Love...

     With today being V-Day and all, I think it only proper to show some love to the artists that will accompany some of us in our Loving Adventures later this evening. Support Texas and Oklahoma artists today and pick up some of the new music that came out today or something that has already been released. 

     Josh Abbott's new single "Touch" is out today and fellows in the hot and heavy footsteps of his singles "Hot Water" and "Taste", it is pure baby making music. Granger smith releases his first live album today, and this thing is amazing. Full of energy and passion from Granger in his crew. The song he calls his only true love song "Oxygen" should be a must have on this evenings passion playlist. 

     Or just pick up anything from any one of the amazing artists that represent Texas and Oklahoma music. Roger Creager, Aaron Watson, Kyle Park, and Brandon Rhyder & so many more all have great great love songs. Your loved one will thank you now, you can thank me later...


Feb 10, 2012

Retro Red Dirt Review Cross Canadian Ragweed "Live & Loud at The Wormy Dog"

     I think most people tend to think of Cross Canadian Ragweed's (CCR) self titled 3rd album when asked to name one of their songs or albums. For me, nothing tops their live album "Live & Loud at The Wormy Dog" released in 1999. This album shows you everything there is about a CCR live show. Sure the production is a little lacking. But this was recorded live, at The Wormy Dog Saloon, still in its original location in Stillwater, over 10 years ago. The energy from the crowd and passion in Cody's vocals are evident in every song and more than make up for the lack of polish. The connection that every fan feels with the band seems to pour through the speakers and pulls you right in with them. The album contains what is probably some of the most underrated CCR songs they have recorded. The song "Bang My Head" is a song that most everyone can relate to. Banging your head against the wall for one reason or another, feeling hopeless, helpless, and frustrated because you feel like you have no control. The "President Song" is a precursor to (and better done version of) Toby Keith's homage to the working man's "shit sucks and this is how I'd fix it" attitude that hard working, red blooded, country raised, simple folks can understand. The hidden jewel on this album is the live version of "Carney Man" which became a staple of live performances for the band for many years. Joined onstage by fellow Oklahoman Jason Boland this version of the song shows exactly what a CCR show was back in 1999. A party from start to finish,with awesome music, good friends, and never mind that funny smell...

Feb 9, 2012

Granger Smith gives us a little "Oxygen"

Granger Smith released a new music video today. It is an acoustic version of his song "Oxygen" from his "Poets & Prisoners" album as well as his upcoming live album "Live at the Chicken" coming next week. The video was shot "on a cool back-road in Northern Arizona" when Granger and his band were on a trip out west last week. It was shot by his brother Tyler, who also shot Granger's last music video for the song "Red Dirt" in a similar "hey this spot looks cool lets shoot a video here" guerrilla sort of approach. What I appreciate is that the video is an acoustic version of the song, giving fans a new sound and way to enjoy it. Check it out here.


Feb 7, 2012

Some New Wade Bowen for Ya!

For all of you eagerly awaiting the new Wade Bowen album like I am,  here is some video of a couple of the new songs (and some old as well). Come on, I mean, it's Wade Bowen.... How can you pass this up? New Wade!!! <---click here

                                     WADE BOWEN "A BATTLE WON"

*thanks to 102.5 FM the Bull in Birmingham for the video

Feb 6, 2012

Thank you Deryl Dodd

    I just wanted to share this link. It is a video from Deryl Dodd about why he chose his latest single "Is There Anybody Out There?" I honestly relate to this song on a very personal level. I was once in a very dark place in my life. I had personal problems, work problems, and my mother was dying from breast cancer. It's nice to see someone in a public forum like Deryl share his story. Thank you Deryl. Please share this link, and request this song on your local radio stations. And remember, we are never truly alone.
Deryl Dodd "Is There Anybody Out There?" 

Feb 4, 2012

Remember the tshirt contest!

Read the previous post to see the shirt I'm giving away. Just email me your best picture or story with a Texas/ Oklahoma/Red Dirt artist. I only have a few so far. Send to reddirtbluecollar@gmail.com Contest ends Feb 29th.

Best of the Stuff You Haven't Heard of...

First things first, this week I would like to thank all of you who have read the blog and came back. It has been a pretty decent success with over 1000 views here in the first 2 weeks. A big thank you goes out to the guys from No Justice who all helped spread the word about the blog last week. This week I will be doing something a little different. I am going to highlight 3 bands that may still be flying under your musical radar but definitely deserve to be heard. So, without further delay, allow me to introduce, Backseat Molly, Rodney Parker & 50 Peso Reward, and Chad Sullins & the Last Call Coalition.

Backseat Molly are from Palestine, TX. They have been together since 2007 when lead singer Steve Callaway decided to put together a band after hanging around the Texas music scene. He gathered up some buddies and Backseat Molly was born.  The guys hit the road and quickly became a popular act in and around their hometown region and east Texas. They have a chemistry, and energy that shines through with an incredible live show. Their debut album “Texas Not Tennessee” has struck a chord with audiences and received a fair amount of radio play. The title song “Texas Not Tennessee” is an unapologetic proclamation that these guys will be big, in Texas, not Tennessee. And I believe that they are well on their way.
                            Backseat Molly "The Best Man"

Rodney Parker & 50 Peso reward come to us from out of the Denton, TX area. Rodney & the Pesos are hard to label as simply a country band, with a sound that prompted one writer to call their music “Weezer meets Waylon”.  One thing that is for certain, they definitely sound like Texas.  Rodney’s lyrics are a bit more introspective than most of his contemporaries but he holds an obvious respect for the lyricists and story tellers that came before him. That in itself, puts Rodney in a class all his own in my opinion. With 3 studio albums and 1 live album under their belt, they are veterans in the music scene. Every album has a different feeling and sound from track to track but it always keeps you tuned in and wanting for more. A Rodney Parker album is not just music; it’s a listening experience.
       Rodney Parker & 50 peso Reward "I'm Never Gonna Get Married"

I don’t honestly know where or how to begin to tell you about Chad Sullins & the Last Call Coalition. I recently had a chance to see them open for No Justice at the Wormy Dog in OKC and all I can say is wow… I hadn’t heard them before that night and 2 songs in I was an instant fan. I will say that they have more of a southern rock sound but with lyrics and songs that the Red Dirt music fan can relate to. Chad spent years fine tuning his music and his stage presence and that definitely shows in his live show. His songs will kick you in the teeth one minute and have you crying in your beer the next. Chad & LCC have put out 2 albums. One “Uphill Battle” is a full studio release that captures the raw energy and passion of his stage shows. The other is an acoustic EP titled “ What’s Left of Me”. Which I can assure you isn’t much, because this guy puts everything into his music. Chad is working on a new album due out later in 2012. Do yourself a favor and pick that thing up when it come out.

Chad Sullins & the Last Call Coalition "Little Things"

Well there ya have it for this week. I hope you guys continue to check in and read the blog. Tell your friends, spread the word. Write me and let me know what you think so far. Or if you know of a band that others might love.  I’m not just doing this because I have a passion for this music, I’m also doing it for you, the fans, because I know how hard it is to love music that most people don’t know anything about.  I’m also doing this for the bands and artists. I have met some amazing people in the Red Dirt/Texas/ Oklahoma music scene. If you are in a band and would like to be featured, or just like what I’m doing here, let me know. I thank you all for being with me to this point. SUPPORT RED DIRT MUSIC!!!
                                CHECK THEM ALL OUT HERE


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Feb 1, 2012

New Josh Abbott single "Touch" hear it here

I have found a link to the new Josh Abbott single "Touch" you can hear it here http://kqbr.com/josh-abbott-band-touch-audio/ It features Kacey Musgraves once again on backing vocals and will be on his new album "Small Town Family Dreams" set to release sometime in April. Look for a full album review here once its released.