Mike Stinson, Robert Ellis

KPFT's Lone Star Jukebox host Rick Heysquierdo has reached over to Austin for the past two installments of his monthly "Troubador Tuesday" series, but he's not dialing long-distance this time. After veteran Damon Bramblett and the brand-new Stone River Boys (and a month off), headlining this month is L.A. transplant Mike Stinson, who has barely taken a night off since relocating to Houston last summer. Besides snagging a nomination for Best LP/CD in this year's Houston Press Music Awards sweepstakes, Stinson's new album The Jukebox in Your Heart (Stag) is one of the best-reviewed — if not the best — honky-tonk records of the year. "At once gleamingly idiosyncratic and indebted to country sacrament, the album progresses with off-kilter grace from the rueful tavern glee of 'Stop the Bar' and 'I'll Live to Drink Again' to the somber, scab-picking laments 'Ashes of a Dream' and 'Walk Away,'" Jonny Whiteside of Press sister paper LA Weekly wrote last month. Joining Stinson is fellow HPMA nominee Robert Ellis, just back from a three-week solo tour and, he says, about to finish the follow-up to last year's ostentatious debut The Great Re-Arranger for a late-fall/winter release.

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