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Cory Morrow, Roger Creager, Jason Boland

Like beauty or good taste, Texas's Red Dirt scene is a lot harder to define than identify. Siblings sharing the same bunk beds, this cadre of hard-touring artists from Oklahoma and Texas kept crossing paths, and developed a camaraderie over the past decade-plus that's led to them sharing concert bills, whiskey, audiences and even success. These certified road dogs are characterized less by their sound — which spans the spectrum from honky-tonk and country to blues, folk and rock — than by a similar fun-loving, big-hearted, blue-collar attitude. Lifted by each other's rising fortunes, they've become a force on the touring circuit with a fanbase as commingled as the artists themselves. Jason Boland and Roger Creager form two of the style's early tributaries, with Boland following a more traditional C&W path from his start in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and Creager tracing a playful, rocking South Texas vein. Cory Morrow has been at it just as long, though he's found greater commercial success with a sound that boasts a stronger pop sensibility while remaining true to both his country and rock impulses. Uniting all three are their energetic performances and a pervasive gratitude for the simple pleasures of the here and now.

 
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