The Best Texas Music Venues for Road Trippin'
Megan D. via Flickr Ballroom Marfa, one of the many music venues worth road tripping to in Texas
As you might have noticed, we're a bit obsessed with traveling here at the Observer. We've given you weekend getaways, food centered trips, and hidden road trips. So it was only a matter of time before we got in on the fun here at DC9. Being that we live and breathe Texas music, here are the 12 music venues from around the state that are worth loading up the car and making the trip from Dallas to. It's time to gas up your ride, put on some music, and hit the road, because you've got bands to see and beers to drink.
Ballroom Marfa in Marfa
Distance from Dallas: 520 miles
Time it takes to get there: 7 hours, 38 minutes
Literally every article about taking a road trip in Texas has to feature a blurb about making the journey to the West Texas town of Marfa. Yes, even one about music venues. Lucky for us Marfa is home to Ballroom Marfa, one of the premier destinations for art-inclined acts in the US. The Ballroom has hosted performances from a reunited At-The Drive In, Explosions in the Sky, Bon Iver, Lyle Lovett and a week-long residency featuring Eleanor Friedberger of the Fiery Furnaces, who is so fond of the venue that she uses it for all her album release shows.
Distance from Dallas: 262 miles
Time it takes to get there: 4 hours, 31 minutes
Maybe it's time you got back to the basics of love and took Highway 281 out of Dallas, and made your way to Lukenbach, Texas for a night of dancing, and singing in the historic unincorporated town that was immortalized by the Outlaw Country movement of the 1970s. Just make sure you listen to Waylon and Willie and the boys while you make the drive.
At the very top of the "Texas Music Bucket List" sits a journey to the legendary Texas dance hall in Gruene. Built as a town center in 1878 by Henry Gruene, the venue bills itself as the oldest continuously run dance hall in the state, and maybe even in the nation. The venue's been featured in everything from a road trip video featured on the AV Club, to being the locale for the dance scene in John Travolta's angel-gone-bad vehicle, Michael. The venue holds weekly concerts featuring some of the biggest names in music, including an upcoming performance by Jenny Lewis in October.
When it comes to a being a must attend venue for lovers of all things Texas Country, the Texas Historic Commission-approved Floore's Country Store in Helotes is second only to Gruene Hall. The hallowed stage in the back has been graced by the likes of Patsy Cline, Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, BB King and Bob Dylan. The venue was opened in in 1942 by John T. Floore, and ever since has been the San Antonio area's premier stop for whiskey, cold beer, and damn fine music.