Terlingua, Texas musicians and community to the rescue!
*** Want to donate to the Terlingua Arts and Music departments? Click the paypal “donate” button – all proceeds will go to the Art and Music Departments at the Terlingua School. ***
When I found out that the music and art teachers in Terlingua were buying music and art supplies for their students out of their meagre paychecks, I found myself channeling the Big Lebowski: “This will not stand!”
As I shared this information with others in the community, the response was pretty much the same.
Rather than focus on why this situation exists, we just fixed it by funding the art and music departments.
On Sunday, August 25th, local artists, musicians and community members gathered at the Starlight Theatre in the Terlingua Ghost Town to raise money for the Terlingua School music and art programs.
We passed the tip jar around, there were silent- and loud- auctions, some people donated by using the above PayPal button – and by the end of the night we had raised over $800. That will buy a lot of paint, reeds, etc.
The Starlight donated beer and food for the musicians and gave us a great, historic venue for the benefit – thanks Buckner, Sonny, Diego, Kathy and all the rest of the gang at the Starlight!
Many local artists and authors donated their work for the auction, and the bidding was fierce. All proceeds go to the kids.
Herman and Deanna (High Sierra Bar and Grill) donated a case of beer for the auction. Ed won.
The musicians donated their time and talent. We are lucky to live in a community that is so rich in brilliant and giving performers and artists. Each act played a short set and still the music went on for over six hours.
Wherein Terlingua, Texas Americana Music and the local community pitch in to buy track shoes for the track team…
It all started at the outside bar at the High Sierra a month ago. Aaron, the track coach, and few other late nighters were relaxing after the Legendary Jam in July and Coach said, “I’ve got some runners who can make it to State this year- if only they could afford shoes.”
Fade forward – 11.45 last night, Aaron was sitting in the back of the room with a big grin on his face while Moses, Clayton and some late-night drinkers sang some canciones en Espanol. Brandi and I were talking at the next table, and Aaron walked over, patting the fat envelope of cash in his pocket: “we’ve got enough money here to buy shoes for both teams, as well as some team shirts and bags!” Continue reading “Flying Shoes…”
Viva Big Bend Music Festival 2013 – Lost Horse Saloon – Marfa, Texas.
The Big Bend of Texas is the last outpost for singer-songwriters. Totally uninfluenced by outside trends, it’s a world unto itself. On any night, and pretty much all day long, there is music playing here.
The local bars support the local musicians with money, food and beer. There’s always a jam going on the porch in the Ghost Town – fiddles, mandolins, guitars, and voices raised in harmony.
The Terlingua Music Concert Series is going through some changes. It’s a good thing.
First – there will be no Legiondary Jam at the American Legion in July. The legion is going through some changes, too, and a lot of our favorite musicians will be in Santa Fe then, cheering Greg Grymes on as he makes his new CD.
August will be all about the Terlingua School.
After the “Second Sunday” jam at the high sierra, I was talking to the track coach. He said, “I’ve got a group that I think can take State this year- if only we could afford track shoes.”
So, the second Sunday in August we’re having a “Second Sunday” jam at the High Sierra Bar and Grill in Terlingua. We’re going to raise enough money to buy the team shoes.
Later in the month- similar deal. The local art and music teachers have been buying supplies for their students out of their paychecks – and they’re about the lowest paid teachers in the State of Texas. I’m not going to talk about the lack of support for Art, Music, and education in general in Texas except to say that it would be nice to vote in some representatives who have the kids best interest at heart.
What we’re going to do is fund those programs ourselves. I’ll announce the details as soon as I’ve confirmed the date and location.
Rockin’ the Ranch at Lajitas – Texas Music, BBQ, Beer, floating in a pool looking at the stars…
The end of the story: we lay on comfy pool recliners, drinking excelent Malbec and watching the stars play on the turquoise water of the pool…
The resort at Lajitas is an oasis in the desert. Literally. Green grass covers the golf course. There are two pools. The suites and hotel rooms are “cowboy’ chic” and luxurious.
It’s also way out of the price range that most Terlinguans can (or will) afford.
That’s why I was so excited when I learned about the “Rockin’ the Ranch” party the resort was putting on. Two great bands (playing through Trevor’s new PA system. Very cool.), against a backdrop of desert mountains and a huge sky.
The first “Second Sunday” Jam at the High Sierra exceeded my expectations.
New location. New time. And the Terlingua Moon (the only “newspaper” out here) didn’t include our info, so the PR campaign consisted of flyers. It could have been lonely…
It was a blast. Somehow, word got out.
The room was full of locals, tourists and musicians. George Goss started at 2:00 and Moe and Brandi closed the show around midnight. In between, some truly amazing music happened. Unexpected combinations of musicians played together, some new musicians showed up, and everybody played like they meant it.
It was a good show.
For the musicians, it was also a chance for good friends to hang out, play together, and share gratitude for being part of such a vibrant musical community. For the audience, it was a free concert showcasing the region’s finest talent.
The High Sierra is a great location for the concert. They’ve got a large selection of cold beer, great food (Tacos Alhambra (sp?) for me), cheerful staff, and the best air conditioner in the county.
The experiment was a success. We’ll be doing a “Second Sunday” concert on a regular basis from now on.
We didn’t have a designated charity for this one, so the money raised will go to the Terlingua Music General Do-Gooder fund.
After the concert, a few dedicated partiers gathered at the outside bar for conversation under the stars. The moon was setting- a dark gold sliver over the ghost town. The Milky Way was a spray of diamonds across the sky. Music played from a pickup truck. And, somebody just happened to have a cooler of beverages.
Talking to the local track coach, I learned that he’s got a new batch of kids that he thinks can take State this year- if only they could afford shoes.
I think we’ve found our charity for the next “Second Sunday” jam.
Legiondary Jam continued the tradition of good times, great music, great food, and good friends hangin’ out.
This month, our beneficiary was the American Legion Post. The legion is under new management, and the new team has a nasty fiscal mess to clean up.
The legion is crucial to the folks who live on Terlingua Ranch. For some people, it’s their Internet cafe. For others, it’s a place to leave messages or borrow the phone (not everybody out here has a phone and cell phones don’t work). If you run out of gas or get a flat, it’s a place to go for help. UPS and Fedex leave packages for those of us who live way off-road.
Most of us moved to the desert for solitude. Sometimes, the solitude can get a little oppressive- and there are usually folks at the legion who are up for conversation, a game of pool, or to just provide a connection to another human.
This morning, it was big smile time at the Legion. They had a good night, and we raised enough donations to cover the electric and phone bill for the month.
Thanks to all the musicians who played, the cooks who provided the pot-luck dinner, and the people who listened and partied with us. Thanks to y’all, the legion is well on its way to solvency.
The new Terlingua Music “Hotter’n Hell and Cooler’n Shit” t-shirts made their debut last night, and it seems like everybody was wearing them. We’ll have those at all future jams- all profit goes to charity. Thanks to Anna Oakley for the fine design.
Living in Terlingua, Texas opens up a universe of possibilities. All you have to do is adjust your concept of “neighborhood,” and you have access to a variety of fascinating experiences.
Living at Terlingua Ranch is one experience. Isolation. Off the grid. Technicolor sunsets. Wild, unpredictable weather.
Terlingua Ghost Town is a whole ‘nother experience. Great food, music on the porch and in the bars, and some very eccentric characters to hang out with.
Last weekend, LaRoja and I spent the weekend in Lajitas visiting with Trevor Hickle and his family. Lajitas is a resort, so we luxuriated in the pool, had dinner delivered to Trevor’s place, did some pickin’, and ended up in a very nice suite.
This weekend, we joined Jalapeno Schwartz for a grand tour of Marfa.
JP (Jalapeno) Schwartz is a country doctor, volunteer public radio DJ, and local celebrity. He and LaRoja have known each other since they were in college.