OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder is a Pop Songwriting Secret Weapon

Categories: Columns

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Courtesy the artist
Ryan Tedder is even more successful when he's not writing for OneRepublic
You could very well be a OneRepublic fan and not even know it. Or at least a Ryan Tedder fan. OK, you could be a fan of Tedder's work and not even know it. You see, Tedder's day job might be singing as OneRepublic's front man, but it's his side gigs that have won him Grammys. OK, he's only won one, but been nominated for, like, three.

Pretty much if Tedder touches a song, whether he helps write or produce it, then there's a good chance it will dominate pop radio. So ahead of OneRepublic's appearance tonight at Gexa Energy Pavilion, here are some of Tedder's biggest hits for other artists.

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Melissa Ratley's Stolen Guitar was a Story with a Happy Ending

Categories: Local Music

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Melissa Ratley Facebook
The stolen guitar after it was returned to it's home last week

In the early of hours of last Wednesday morning, after playing a Tuesday night set at Adair's in Dallas, someone broke into the car of local country singer-songwriter Melissa Ratley and stole her beloved acoustic guitar. While a few other personal items from her vehicle went missing as well, it was her black acoustic's disappearance that hit her the hardest.

Thankfully, unlike some other notable recent musical theft -- in particular, that of the still-unrecovered Frankie 45 memorial guitar from Club Dada -- this tale has a happy ending. But before the joy of being reunited, Ratley felt the sick, instantly-pounding pain of loss. "My heart immediately sank in my stomach," says the Flower mound-based Ratley. "I ran out and flipped the back of my Jeep open to make sure some of my other gear wasn't stolen, and thankfully it was still there -- which means it was a snatch and grab job. I couldn't believe it happened."

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The Best Concerts in Dallas This Week, 8/25 - 8/31

Categories: Previews

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Courtesy the artist
Well howdy, there. Clint Black plays McKinney this Wednesday.
For once, going back to work on a Monday comes with a pay-off in sight: This week we'll get a three-day weekend, courtesy of Labor Day falling a week from today. So that, at least, is something to take comfort in. What else is there to be excited about? Why, all the fine concerts coming through Dallas in the next seven days, that's what. Whether it's country, metal or boy bands, there's something worth seeing each night.

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Aerosmith at American Airlines Center, 8/22/14

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks
Steven Tyler was the predictable life of the party during Aerosmith's visit to AAC on Friday
Aerosmith
With Slash
Gexa Energy Pavilion, Dallas
Friday, August 22, 2014

When Aerosmith hit the stage at American Airlines Center on Friday night, Steven Tyler appeared dressed in a sparkly long coat and top hat. He was posed with guitarist Joe Perry in the middle platform as the band launced into opener "Love in an Elevator." Right from the beginning, Tyler proved he has the kind of coveted energy that can't be bought at any health store.

Each sprightly skip and posed move of his hands is exactly on beat, turning the most mundane detail into an excuse for entertainment, like exaggerating the urge to cough at the end of a song to the point of absurdity. And for the duration of the night, Tyler made the show his own.


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Panic! at the Disco at South Side Ballroom, 8/22/14

Categories: Last Night

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Rachel Parker
PATD, pictured here playing the Palladium in 2011, performed at South Side Ballroom on Fridat
Panic! at the Disco
South Side Ballroom, Dallas
Friday, August 22, 2014

From an outsider's perspective, it would seem Panic! at the Disco sings to the age of teen angst -- when you're too young to go anywhere without your parents, when school and life is miserable, and when black eyeliner is the only acceptable look.

That was certainly the case Friday night when the South Side Ballroom was near or at capacity. The attendants were teenagers, who had no fear of PDA, and some chaperone dads to watch on.

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Sarah Jaffe at Majestic Theatre, 8/23/14

Categories: Last Night

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Jeff Gage
Sarah Jaffe (second from left) with her band at the Majestic on Saturday night
Sarah Jaffe
With Josh Pearson
Majestic Theatre, Dallas
Saturday, August 23, 2014

As local artists go, few in the Dallas scene are as widely beloved as Sarah Jaffe. After the 2010 release of "Suburban Nature," it was almost a foregone conclusion that Jaffe was destined for a long career as an indie darling. And yet four years later, here we are: Outside of hardcore indie fans in certain niches across the country, Jaffe has yet to attract the broader national recognition that she so rightly deserves.

But Saturday night's show at the Majestic Theatre may have finally signaled a new era in Dallas' favorite sullen singer-songwriter's career. Just a few days after the release of Don't Disconnect, this show may have served as the last time you'll be able to see Sarah Jaffe in a venue this intimate. She felt just as at home on that stage at the Majestic as she did in the grimy venues that she frequented at the beginning of her career.


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12 Highly Entertaining Indie Musicians To Follow On Twitter

Categories: The Industry

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Jim Bricker
Vampire Weekend

By Ivan Guzman

Way back in 2006, I bet the founders of Twitter had no idea the social-media platform would become the force it is today. Sure, you can interact with your friends and whatnot, but perhaps the coolest, most intriguing part of Twitter is the way it makes us music lovers able to see what our favorite musicians are up to.

Just think about it. Your favorite artist -- whether some nobody musician who makes beats in his or her basement or even a legend like Cher -- is most likely active on Twitter. It allows us to form what often seems like a personal connection with our idols, while we've found that some less-popular acts totally triumph in the tweeting game against those with 40-plus million followers like Katy Perry and Justin Bieber.

We've compiled a list of 16 indie artists who you should probably think about following on Twitter below, so go on a quick unfollowing spree, do what you gotta do to make some room on your timeline for some fresh, new 140-character goodness from artists who are contributing some fresh, new sounds to the music world.

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The Five Best Bottle Rockets Songs

Categories: Previews

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Bloodshot Records/Tuan lee

Currently based in Saint Louis, the Bottle Rockets have long been a band singing songs for all working-class folks in America. Since their first record was released in 1992, the Brian Henneman-led group has been closely associated with the alt-country boom of the mid-1990s thanks, on the one hand, to the band's roots-rock sound and, on the other, to Henneman's close involvement with the godfathers of alt-country, Uncle Tupelo, with whom he served as a guitar tech and occasional extra member.

These days, only Henneman and drummer Mark Ortman remain from the original line-up, but a new Bottle Rockets album is on its way very soon. Tomorrow night, in fact, they'll be visiting Dallas for a show at The Foundry. So, with apologies to killer tunes such as "Radar Gun," "Lucky Break," "The Long Way" and "Smokin' 100s Alone," here are the five best Bottle Rockets songs.

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Wild Detectives Embrace the Culture of Oak Cliff with Chicha Concert

Categories: Local Music

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Catherine Downes
The backyard of Wild Detectives should be much busier than this come Saturday night

About six months ago, The Wild Detectives opened its doors with the intention to be more than just a bookstore. So far they've hosted readings, wine tastings and book presentations as well as their backyard shows. As an aspiring member of the Oak Cliff community (and not just another fixture of the rapidly changing Bishop Arts District), the store has strived to embrace its neighborhood.

Tomorrow night, they'll be expanding their eclectic offerings with a Chicha party featuring live music and cultural revelry. Food will also be served by Taqueria el Paderino because, let's face it, every facet of life is improved by adding tacos.


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Country Music's 10 Biggest Pop Crossover Successes

Categories: Columns

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Courtesy the artist
Sorry T-Swift, but Shania Twain wrote the book on country crossovers
The line that designates what is and is not country music is muddier than most of us are willing to admit. What is abundantly clear, though, is that country music appeals to more people than just rednecks and sappy beer drinkers. Taylor Swift may think she's reinventing the wheel in her journey from plucking a banjo to the top of the pops, but country crossover artists have made moves into the mainstream for decades, arguably more so than artists in any other genre.

Before Taylor Swift, country crossover stars sold millions of records to people who would have never considered themselves fans of the genre. Whatever you think about "poppy" country, there's no denying the massive appeal of these ten artists who got their start in Nashville.

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