Music News – Nov 19, 2020

Another week in our crazy world and another week of live music being scattered around our city. There’s still a few venues that aren’t open for a variety of reasons, some by choice, others forced to close because of the social distance rule. Just when you think it’s safe to venture out in public, folks out in El Paso send everyone back to the beginning. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, or is it $100. I haven’t played Monopoly in a long time, so I’ve forgotten some of the rules. Anyway, there’s still plenty of live music to enjoy. Gruene Hall has two sold-out shows this weekend by the amazing Sean McConnell. Along with Raul Malo, Sean has one of the best voices in music, plus he’s a great songwriter, so hopefully you have tickets already. It’s good to see Anhalt Hall back open, that’s encouraging. On Saturday they will feature Jeff Woolsey & the Dancehall Kings to the historic hall. Over in San Marcos, Gus Clark is opening for Landon Bullard tonight. I wasn’t familiar with Gus until I saw him perform a few weeks ago at the Red Bird Listening Room. Trust me, this guy can sing. Sam Riggs is one of the young singer songwriters that have a promising future in this business, and you can see for yourself on Friday night at the Downtown Social. Over at Floores Country Store, our own Dallas Burrow will open for his friend Charley Crockett on Friday. On Saturday, Kevin Fowler will perform two shows, one at 6pm and another at 9:30pm. Many venues have had to adapt to the new model of two shows per night to break even. No one is making a profit anymore; they are simply doing anything they can to survive. Then you have Taylor Swift who saw her entire music catalog sold again for over $300 million to an equity group called Shamrock Holding. If you recall, Taylor’s old record label sold her catalog to her number one enemy, Scooter Braun. Taylor claimed she was never given a chance to buy her master recordings. They battled it out on social media and Scooter came out looking like the bad guy. Scooter paid $200 million for the music, then sold it to Shamrock for $300 million. It was an easy $100 million profit and Taylor once again claims she didn’t get the chance to even bid on her master catalog. However, she can legally re-record all her albums and resell them on her website, which according to her, that’s exactly what she plans to do. Since no one can tour anytime soon, she’s got time to do it. Well, think it’s time to go dig out our old Monopoly game and roll the dice. For some reason I always pick the iron or the dog, today I think I’ll pick the race car.

Elton John Releases 8-CD Box Set

Rock star icon Elton John had to postpone his final tour because of the Covid pandemic and is scheduled to return to the stage in September 2021. The first leg of the resumed tour will take him all across the United Kingdom. He will return to America in 2022 and will hit all the cities he missed in 2019. The Lone Star state will get two shows in Houston and Dallas in late June, so if you missed his San Antonio concert in late 2019, this will be your last chance to see him in concert. During his forced vacation, Elton teamed up with songwriting partner Bernie Taupin and compiled an 8-CD box set of songs spanning their entire career. Back in the 60’s, Elton and Bernie were struggling musicians trying to get their big break. Elton wrote music and Bernie wrote lyrics so when they joined forces, it was a perfect match. Together they wrote hundreds of songs before finally having a hit with ‘Your Song’ in 1970. Elton and Bernie dug through the vaults and unearthed a treasure trove of rare unreleased music. Disc 1 and 2 are the deep cuts, which are album tracks they both loved but for some reason, were never released as singles. On Disc 3, 4 and 5, they compile all the rarities they could find in the vaults. The sixty-five tracks have been locked away for over fifty years. You get to hear Elton’s very first song, Come Back Baby, that he wrote in 1965. You also hear Scarecrow; the first song Elton and Bernie wrote together in 1967. Discs 6 and 7 are all the rare B sides that were on the flip side of his singles, many appearing on CD for the first time. It’s the first time these 36 tracks appear together in one collection. Disc 8 is the companion to his recent autobiography and contains the sixteen songs he talks about in his book. The box set is pricey but is extremely high quality and it was personally designed by Elton. It will make a perfect holiday for the music lover in your family.

Freiheit Country Store to Host Musicians Benefit

Everyone knows that the entertainment industry was one of the hardest hit during the pandemic. Every music venue, theatre, dancehall, and bar were forced to close in March and though this month they are slowly starting to reopen, it will be a long time before things get back to normal. Working musicians took a big hit these past eight months, most were forced out of work with no chance of earning a living. Musicians in our city are a close group and are first in line to lend a helping hand when asked. On Sunday afternoon, they will join forces at Freiheit Country Store for the Culinaria Music Festival to benefit central Texas musicians. The event kicks off at 2pm with appearances by Tony Taylor, Austin Gilliam, William Beckman, Jamie Lin Wilson, Bri Bagwell, Cody Canada and Wade Bowen. Once again, area musicians are coming together to help each other in this time of need. It’s what they always do and continue to do, even though most of them are barely surviving themselves. It will be a fun day of friends and good music, so get your tickets now at

The 54th Annual CMA Awards

If you watched the CMA Awards last week, you saw one of the few award shows that wasn’t canceled because of the pandemic. Once again, there was drama after all the awards were handed out. Last year, Garth Brooks won his 7th Entertainer of the Year Award and some fans were upset that he has won so many times. Remember, we now live in a world that everyone gets a trophy, regardless of whether you win or lose. You must make sure no one gets their feelings hurt. So, this year, Garth took his name out of the nominations to give everyone else a chance. Eric Church was declared Entertainer of the Year at this year’s award show. Once again, fans were upset that Carrie Underwood didn’t win, noting that the last time a female won the award was in 2011 when Taylor Swift took home the trophy. There were also some ruffled feathers over the omission of John Prine, Billy Joe Shaver and Johnny Bush when the CMA paid tribute to artists who have passed away this year. Jason Isbell and wife Amanda Shires returned their CMA Membership Cards in protest of John Prine not being honored. Mickey Gilley and Johnny Lee were honored for the 40th Anniversary of Urban Cowboy. Both guys still sing great but for some reason they weren’t allowed to perform. Instead they let the group Old Dominion sing Looking for Love. Thankfully when Charlie Pride was given the Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award, they let him sing Kiss An Angel Good Morning, his first Number One hit. The nights best performance came from Chris Stapleton, armed with just an acoustic guitar and his wife providing backing vocals, they sang his new song Starting Over. It was a reminder to everyone what real country music should sound like.




Adobe Verde  (1724 Hunter Road, 830-629-0777)

Fri – Blues Like It Usta Wuz – 6:30pm

Sat – The Percolators – 6:30pm


Anhalt Hall (2390 Anhalt Rd, Spring Branch  830-438-2873)

Sat – Jeff Woolsey & the Dancehall Kings – 8pm


Billy’s Ice  (1193 Loop 337, 830-692-8169)

Tonight – Austin James – 8:30pm

Fri – Genevieve Allen – 8:30pm

Sat – JJ Garrett / Beatnik Band – 9:30pm

Sun – Lucas Taylor – 7pm

Wed – 3 Man Front/ Bill Ayres Band – 6pm


Cheatham Street Warehouse (119 Cheatham Street, San Marcos, 512-353-3777)

Tonight – Gus Clark / Landon Bullard – 8pm

Fri – Tyler McCollum – 8pm

Sat – Pecos & the Rooftops – 8pm


Dam Red Barn (16520 S. Access Rd, Canyon Lake  830-964-3276)

Sat – Jesse Stratton Band – 8:30pm


Devil’s Backbone Tavern (4041 FM 32, Fisher, TX)

Tonight – Turn Up Jam – 7:30pm


Downtown Social Club (386 W. San Antonio, 830-214-6650)

Fri – Sam Riggs – 8:30pm


Farmer’s Market (Castell Street Downtown)

Sat – TBA – 9:30am


Floores Country Store  (14492 Old Bandera Rd  210-695-8827)

Fri – Dallas Burrow / Charley Crockett – 8pm

Sat – Carson Jeffrey / Kevin Fowler – 6pm & 9:30pm


Freiheit Country Store (2157 FM 1101, 830-625-9400)

Tonight – Geoff Hill & Tony Taylor – 2pm

Fri – Kin Faux – 8pm

Sun – Benefit for Central Texas Musicians – 2pm


Grapevine in Gruene   (1612 Hunter Rd  830-606-0093)

Tonight – Sylvia Kirk – 5pm

Fri – Colton’s Kin – 4pm

Sat – Dirty River Jazz Band – 2pm

Sun – Colton’s Kin – 1pm


Gristmill River Grill (1287 Gruene Road, 830-625-0684)
Tonight – Soul Ethos w/ Jamie Cameron & Robert Carter – 6:30pm


Gruene Hall (1281 Gruene Rd   830-606-1281)

Tonight – Slim Bawb & Fabulous Stumpgrinders – 6pm

Fri – Ashley Ray / Sean McConnell – 7pm

Sat – Pat Byrne Band – 12:30pm / Ben Danaher / Sean McConnell – 7pm

Sun – Lance Lipinsky – Noon / South Austin Moonlighters – 4:30pm

Mon – Bret Graham – 6pm

Tue – Reed Brothers, K Phillips & Nate Rodriguez – 6pm

Wed – Ben Danaher / Wade Bowen (acoustic trio) – 7pm


Happy Cow (9103 FM 1102, Hunter, TX. 512-667-7510)

Fri – Ghost Dance Band – 8:30pm

Sat – Prince Tribute Band – 8pm


Krause’s Café (148 Castell, 830-632-5076)

Tonight – Michael Alanis Trio – 6pm

Fri – Pete & Sean Williams – 7pm

Sat – Alli Mattace Band – 6pm

Sun – Dirty River Jazz Band – 10am / Slim Bawb – 2pm / Blue Cat Bone – 5pm

Wed – Yodel Blitz – 6pm


Luckenbach Dance Hall (412 Town Loop, Luckenbach  830-997-3224)

Tonight – Stephen K. Morris – 5pm

Fri – Hayden Whittington – 1pm / Lee Mathis & Brutally Handsome – 8pm

Sat – Almost Patsy Cline Trio – 1pm / Kin Faux / Jon Wolfe – 8pm

Sun – Jake Martin – 5pm


Old River City Café (2771 FM 725   830-620-1900)

Sun – Ryan Waguespack – 10:30am

Wed – Monte Good – 5:30pm


Pale Horse & Sky Bar (2031 Central Plaza, Creekside 830-743-1067)

Fri – Terry Cavanagh & Alpine Express – 7pm

Sat – Terry Cavanagh & Alpine Express – 7pm


Phoenix Saloon (193 W San Antonio, 830-643-1400)

Fri – Tex Porter – Noon / Junior Nash – 5pm

Sat – 3 Man Front – 8pm

Sun – Junior Nash – 1:30pm

Wed – Steven Vee – Noon


Pour Haus  (343 W San Antonio, 830-214-6033)

Tonight – Shawn Hart & Friends – 8:30pm

Fri – Popgun – 8:30pm

Sat – Sun Valley Station – 9:30pm

Sun – Bo Brumble & Friends – 8:30pm


Riley’s Tavern (8894 FM 1102 512-392-3132)

Tonight – Mike Ethan Messick – 7pm

Fri – The Homebodies – 7pm

Sat – Danny B. Harvey – 8pm

Sun – NPD Songwriter Series – 4pm


River Road Ice House (1791 Hueco Springs Loop  830-626-1335)

Fri – Open Mic – 7pm


Rudy’s BBQ (844 Loop 337,  830-609-3337)

Tonight – Tyler Cannon – 6pm


Sam’s Burger Joint (330 E Grayson St   210-223-2830)

Fri – Paul Val / Elijah Zane – 7pm

Sat – Max & Heather Stalling – 7:30pm


Villa at Gruene (1190 Gruene Rd,   830-625-9463)

Sun – Jonny Burke & Kevin Russell (Shinyribs) – 3pm


Watering Hole  (1390 McQueeney Rd  830-625-0045)

Fri – 3 Man Front – 8:30pm

Sat – Rick Reyna Band – 9pm

Sun – Acoustic Show – 2pm


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