The Sounds of H-Town

Cactus Music wants your help with a "Community-Curated Playlist."

Only in Houston

The song must be either inspired by Houston or written and performed by a Houston-based artist, and be no longer than five minutes.

All nominations must be submitted to ­Cactus via a link that can be found at One entry will be chosen at random for a $100 Cactus gift card. Deadline is 9 p.m. Monday, February 18.

Steve Earle's "Telephone Road" is an early favorite for Cactus Music's "community-curated playlist."
Jason Wolter
Steve Earle's "Telephone Road" is an early favorite for Cactus Music's "community-curated playlist."
Beyoncé shushed her doubters by singing the national anthem live during her January 31 Super Bowl press conference.
Craig Hlavaty
Beyoncé shushed her doubters by singing the national anthem live during her January 31 Super Bowl press conference.

The songs with the most votes will be compiled into a one-hour playlist, to be revealed at the store during a listening party from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, February 21. Houston acts whose songs make the playlist may be tapped to perform live during the party.

Off the top of our head, Rocks Off would choose Steve Earle's "Ft. Worth Blues," both because Earle has been such a friend to Cactus over the years and because it contains the line "Houston really ain't that bad a town." We think so, and we know a lot of other folks do, too.

Since this article was posted February 6, more than a dozen reader chimed in, including the following comments:

Sarah Hirsch: "Weird... I sent a video of 'Telephone Road' to my friend in Nashville just yesterday, citing it as my favorite song about Houston."

Adam Castaneda: "I wish we could vote more than once. My vote went to 'Tops Drop,' [I] wish I could add Leadbelly's 'Midnight Special.'"

Roberto Quintero: "'June 27,' DJ Screw"

Jason Barron: "5th Ward Boys, 'Pussy, Weed & Alcohol'"

Chris Wright: "Steve Earle track has to be 'Telephone Road'"

Lore Guilmartin: "Also Rodney Crowell's 'Telephone Road' and Lyle Lovett's 'Wallisville Road'"

WTF Island

Who should play the 2014 Super Bowl halftime show?

Craig Hlavaty

Earlier this month, I was honored to cover the Super Bowl XLVII festivities and game in New Orleans for the Houston Press and local TV outlet KIAH (Channel 39). Great fun, if not for locals in NOLA, who were ravaged by drunken football fanatics puking onto their 49ers and Ravens jerseys in the streets.

Obviously Beyoncé's halftime show, along with the commercials, was big news leading up to the game. As for the game, well, the Ravens' resident reverend Ray Lewis got to end his career with a second Super Bowl ring.

Next year the big game comes to the New York area on February 2, 2014, at the new MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New ­Jersey. We won't know who is playing the halftime show until at least early fall, so we have plenty of time to speculate.

Why not just have Louis C.K. do 15 minutes of stand-up? He's an NYC local, after all, and his stage would just be a stool and a microphone. What company has the balls to sponsor that?

The big conversation, though, is how weather will affect the game, since MetLife is open air. Jersey in late January/early February isn't exactly historically sunny and warm, and that will be factored in when the halftime entertainment is booked.

There could be a torrential snowstorm, zero-degree winds, you name it. You can bundle up and heat a stage, but what if the Super Bowl committee books Lady Gaga, a New York City native?

I know I know, I am just supposing...

Being a Jersey Super Bowl, the first logical choice is Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, who also played halftime in 2009. I still get chills thinking about how awesome those 12 minutes played out; the Bruce crotch shot was just the cherry on top. Playing "Working on a Dream"? Not so much.

But bands do not normally play in detrimental weather. Imagine Beyoncé doing what she did during a blizzard. Not so sexy, unless you love head-to-toe fur and boots.

Bon Jovi also is a Jersey act. They would be a no-brainer for most people holding massive bags of money, and their popularity isn't waning any time soon. And your mom digs them.

The Strokes are from Manhattan. But the Strokes are boring live. And the Strokes haven't released a decent album since the first Dubya administration.

Could Jay-Z pass muster for the NFL? Is middle America ready for him and Kanye on such a stage? The seven-second delay would be a given.

Here's hoping that Taylor Swift doesn't begin dating a pro football player anytime soon. In the span of time it took me to type that sentence, she probably already did.

Screwston, Texas

Where to party with rappers during NBA All-Star Weekend.



Slim Thug, 5th Amendment (2900 Travis): Hometown boy Slim Thug with DJ Mr. Rogers at 5th, which already is Houston's best spot for a Thursday night. $40 tickets can't be beaten.

Trinidad James, Jas Prince & Andre Johnson @ The Drake (1902 Washington): Trinidad might be taking up residency in the city throughout the weekend, so here's the first part of it. $30 at The Drake with Rap-a-Lot heir Jas Prince and Andre Johnson.

Bun B & Kirko Bangz, Bambou (2540 University): Bun said, "See you in February for the All-Star Game" back in 2006 and it stuck. Now here he is hosting with Houston's most visible new artist, and the fun thing about the package here is that you could buy tickets for 2 Chainz & Future's show at Venue PLUS tickets to DJ Drama's day party at Avenue (4500 Washington).

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