Aaron Watson's "The Underdog" Proves Texas Country is Growing Up

Categories: Columns

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Courtesy the artist
Aaron Watson
To be completely honest, Aaron Watson has never been one of my favorite Texas country artists. He's recorded solid songs in his 15-year career ("Lonely Lubbock Nights" comes to mind) but has generally been surpassed by contemporaries like Pat Green and Charlie Robison in terms of commercial and critical success. On his latest release, though, it seems as if Aaron Watson has settled down into a mature rhythm that really suits him as an artist.

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Asleep at the Wheel Lacked Real Swing at the Kessler Theater on Friday

Categories: Last Night

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Doug Davis
Ray Benson led Asleep at the Wheel through two shows at The Kessler on Friday

Asleep at the Wheel
Kessler Theater, Dallas
Friday, February 20, 2015

What to say about Asleep at the Wheel? The band is both a tribute and throwback to Texas Swing music, that glorious mash-up of country music and big-band jazz. And the band -- well, leader Ray Benson, anyway -- provides one of the few visible direct links to the cosmic cowboy scene of '70s Austin. The Wheel plays music that is timeless, infectious, and is meant for dancing. In short, the Wheel is near and dear to me.


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Jack Gulledge, Husband of Karaoke Carmen, is the Harmonica Man of Deep Ellum

Categories: Local Music

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Jack Gulledge
Jack Gulledge is the man with the harmonicas in Deep Ellum

Most people don't know about the harmonica player. Long gone are the days when a first-rate blues harp player could be the star draw of a band. Today it's an increasingly rare art form, its practitioners content to take a side role in their band or may even be a guest musician sitting in. Stumble through the door of Adair's Saloon or The Free Man on any given night of the week, and chances are you'll find Jack Gulledge doing just that, a handful of harmonicas slung over his shoulder in a custom-made, brown leather strap.

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Taking Back Sunday at South Side Ballroom, 2/21/15

Categories: Last Night

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Courtesy the artist
Taking Back Sunday showed their scruffy side at South Side Ballroom on Saturday
Taking Back Sunday
With Letlive and the Menzingers
South Side Ballroom, Dallas
Saturday, February 21, 2015

The scene at South Side Ballroom on Saturday night for the fourth stop of Taking Back Sunday's 2015 tour looked like a combined high school reunion for the classes of the 2000's. The room was chock full of beard balm-packing, flannel-clad hipsters, with a few studded belts and some silicone jewlery to remind us all that these were one-time scene kids.

But there was an even bigger transformation that had taken place in the band's lead singer. When the band hit stage, there was a moment when the crowd was unsure if the man in black, standing at the mic was Adam Lazzara or a very impressive Russell Brand impersonator.


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The Best Concerts In Dallas This Week, 2/23-3/1

Categories: Previews

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Image via the Artist
All about that zzzz

Have no fear, Dallas; as soon as this dreaded icepocalypse ends, we'll have plenty of concerts to revive our flagging social lives. In one of the most left field choices in recent memory, Meghan Trainor is taking all of her bass to the Granada Theater. Jonathan Richman keeps his recurring shows in Denton alive. Diana Ross, who gave us Tracee Ellis Ross as well as, you know, her music, plays the Verizon Theatre. Key! plays a nondescript Deep Ellum locale. There's plenty more too.


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A.Dd+'s Slim Gravy Grows Up and Steps Into the Unknown with Scatterbrained

Categories: Local Music
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Jayson Vaughn
Slim Gravy

Slim Gravy is a man in transition. For years he's been known as one half of Dallas' most popular rap group, A.Dd+. Tall, lanky and not afraid to spit fire, Gravy has always brought a special attitude to his music, a swagger and determination that helps drive the group. But now he's venturing into his first-ever solo project outside of A.Dd+, called Scatterbrained, and it feels like much more than a mere side project. It's Gravy taking his future into his own hands, no matter what it takes.

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The Ticket is Finally Hosting a Concert at Ticketstock, and It Won't Be the Last

Categories: Local Music

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Mike Brooks
Danny Balis sees room for more live music at the annual Ticketstock bash.

The guys at The Ticket really like music. It's not even close to being a secret, even if it is technically a sports talk radio station. But they've always tended to keep their passion for music at arm's length -- say, with funny segments on the radio, or with performances from their own Ticket Timewasters. That's why this weekend's Ticketstock at the Irving Convention Center feels like such a watershed moment: For the first time ever, The Ticket will be hosting a bona fide concert from a real, live band, the Old 97's. And in classic Ticket style, it's free.


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The Coathangers Love Dallas and Proved It Again Last Night at Trees

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks
The Coathangers

The Coathangers
With Nothing and Cutter
Trees, Dallas
Thursday, February 19, 2015

By Anita Riot

The Coathangers are no strangers to Dallas. The ladies in the Atlanta-based punk trio (formerly a quartet) pass through town often enough that you could almost set a watch to it, but that never seems to dampen their enthusiasm for playing here. With their Red Bull Sound Select show at Trees making for a free (with RSVP) appearance, it was a gimme that local music fans would respond in kind.

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The Best Concerts in Dallas This Weekend, 2/20-2/22

Categories: Previews

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Image via the Artist.
Enter the void with Buffalo Black.

It may not be Valentine's Day anymore, but fret not; there's still plenty happening in Dallas this weekend, folks. The Thin Line Film Fest takes over Denton. Buffalo Black plays a show to celebrate the release of a Spike Lee film that features his song in the trailer. Jamaican Queens hit Crown & Harp. Ten Hands and Asleep at the Wheel do The Kessler Theater. There's plenty, plenty more as well. Check it out.


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Dallas-Bred Vanilla Ice Gets Burned with Arrest and Burglary Charge in Florida

Categories: News

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Ed Steele
Vanilla Ice during simpler times at a Frisco bar in 2013

Vanilla Ice has played a lot of different roles over the years. He was, of course, once a rapper, and in fact still the most successful one that Dallas has ever produced. But he's also been a nu metal singer, a movie star (well, he's been in movies anyway), a Juggalo and a liver of the surreal life. But now, following charges filed yesterday in Lantana, Florida, Ice Ice Baby is also an alleged burglar.


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