Butch Hancock Art at the Starlight Theatre

Monday, June 5, 2017 – Butch Hancock art show in Terlingua.

I would have been there anyway, as it turns out I was booked to play a “Blue Monday” show at the Starlight that night anyway, so, with guitars and camera…

A lot of people who showed up for Butch’s show- some of whom have known Butch a long time- didn’t know he was an artist. He’s also an architect, record label head, playwright, actor, songwriter, performer, river guide, and, I suspect, anything else he wants to be. You don’t meet many real polymaths in real life. Butch is one.

A polymath (Greek: πολυμαθής, polymathēs, “having learned much”) is a person whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas; such a person is known to draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems.

After sound check but before the restaurant opened, Butch was showing me around. There’s a photo he took on Hallowe’en in 1985 on 6th Street in Austin – the photo is pretty amazing, but the way Butch took it is, to me, even more amazing. Continue reading “Butch Hancock Art at the Starlight Theatre”

Amanda Kitchens, Garner Sloan, Epic Porch Jam

Last Saturday night, Amanda Kitchens and Garner Sloan, along with drummer Daniel Warner, played the “big stage” at the Starlight Theatre.

I wrote about their last gig here. It was a good folky Americana show. This show rocked. The energy level was high, Garner put a little hair on his guitar for a grungy tone, and the drums added punch.

Garner’s got a new CD coming out soon. I’m looking forward to hearing what he’s created.

Amanda’s becoming a Terlingua regular. She’s been here with a handful of different bands, including her own band, and they’ve all been different and delightful.


Continue reading “Amanda Kitchens, Garner Sloan, Epic Porch Jam”

Sarah Burton + Open Mic

Wednesday night was another amazing night of music in Terlingua.

I met Sarah Burton at the Las Ruinas Campground, which I run and where she was staying for the night. She’s a Canadian singer/songwriter touring the Southwest U.S. for the summer.

She was late for soundcheck, so I cleaned the bathrooms and shower at the campground while she hurried to the Starlight Theatre, where she would be performing later that night.

Later, I joined her for dinner and then sat down to catch the first few songs, thinking I’d head for the Boathouse for Open Mic. Two and a half hours later, I was still sitting there. I turned to Buckner Cooke, who is entertainment manager and sound guy at the Starlight and said, “I would have paid for this show.”

Bucky informed me that he had just decided to charge a retroactive $10 cover.

Sarah is one of those rare performers who is able to take on the character of the protagonist of her songs. She becomes the song. Her show was mostly originals, with a few tasty cover tunes.

She played for a half-filled room, but people lingered over dinner and drinks and she held the crowd. I suspect that the next time she plays in Terlingua she’ll fill the room. I’ll certainly be there.

After Sarah’s show, she, Buckner, some of the staff from the Starlight, and I headed for the Boathouse, where Santa was hosting the Open Mic.

Santa sang. Chris Baker and Shanna Cowell sang and played. John Cronin, who plays with Ian Tyson, was visiting and he played and sang (Another Canadian!). Shannon sang and Trevor played. Trevor sand and played while I accompanied him. And then, Sarah played and sang.

Once again, it was just another night of amazing music in Terlingua.

Jeffro Greasewood is Santa
Jeffro Greasewood is Santa

Continue reading “Sarah Burton + Open Mic”

Butch Hancock and Bruce Salmon together at the Boathouse

Just another night in Terlingua.

A couple of locals got together at the Boathouse to sling songs.

Butch Hancock and Bruce Salmon got together for, as far as I know, the first time to trade tunes.

It wasn’t an intuitive match-up. Butch’s songs have a timeless West Texas by way of Dharamsala vibe. Simple chords, deceptively simple lyrics that are as precise as diamonds.

Bruce’s songs sound to me like they’ve been excerpted from an interesting play. Possibly a play set in Eastern Europe. Like Butch, his songs tell stories. His melodies, however, can be based on modes that are more Eastern than Western. Certainly not Country and Western.

They’re both folk singers, and the combination and juxtaposition of their songs and styles made for a fascinating evening of music.

Inevitably, dancing broke out during the last set. Jim Keaveny, who knows a bit about writing songs, added percussion on his tambourine. Stories were told, beer and chicken-fried steak were consumed, and when they played “What’s So Funny About Peace Love and Understanding,” harmonies joined in from various places in the room.

Just another night in Terlingua.

Butch and Bruce
Butch and Bruce 

Continue reading “Butch Hancock and Bruce Salmon together at the Boathouse”

Paper Moon Shiners and Daisy O’Connor in Terlingua

Last night was another night of great music in Terlingua. 

At the Starlight Theatre, the Paper Moon Shiners – Elena Antinelli and Frank Meyer – played.

Deeply embedded in the past, the riotously fun, gritty, saucy, sometimes sad, operatic and always soulful Paper Moon Shiners mine time periods that conjure up smoky prohibition speakeasies, dust bowl medicine shows, Mississippi Delta juke joints and Harlem Renaissance night clubs.

Elena owns the songs she sings, whether it’s one of their originals or a vintage classic like Minnie the Moocher. Frank is a multi-instrumentalist and singer, and when he hits the low notes on “Low Yodeler,” people just look at each other and shake their heads. Nobody can hit those notes- and yet, Frank does.

The Paper Moon Shiners are regular visitors to Terlingua, and played to a packed room.



Continue reading “Paper Moon Shiners and Daisy O’Connor in Terlingua”

Trevor Hickle CD Release Party!

Last night there was a huge party to celebrate the release of Trevor Hickle’s “Desert Road” CD at the Starlight Theatre.

From my point of view, it was a valedictory moment- I produced, recorded and played on that CD along with Trevor and Chase Peeler, and we’ve been working on it for over a year.

To hear it blasting from the PA system in the Starlight and then to actually perform it for an appreciative crowd was… delightful.

After the show there were hugs, wine, and high-fives. Here’s what it looked like. Photos by Betsy Blaydes. Continue reading “Trevor Hickle CD Release Party!”

Ambient music, modern dance, and cowboys.

portable recording studio

There was something new and different at the Starlight Theatre last night.

Paul Sprawl and his wife Leralee Whittle are building an artist residency retreat here in Terlingua. They plan to have housing, performance space and audio/video recording facilities.

They’re still building, but their first “resident” was Ted Killian, a composer from Oregon. Ted plays guitar- actually, Ted uses a guitar as a source sound and manipulates that sound through walls of technology.

Last night, Ted and Paul improvised over two hours of very cool ambient music. Paul played Moog synthesizer, guitar, and sang. Ted played his guitar rig and a Daxaphone. Leralee set up a dance space and danced/performed while Ted and Paul played. Continue reading “Ambient music, modern dance, and cowboys.”