Hayes Carll

Home for the holidays...Hayes Carll may not live here anymore, but The Woodlands native has become one of Southeast Texas's leading musical ambassadors. Texas talent scouts first picked up on Carll's ear for whiskey melodies and nose for downcast detail on now-shuttered local label Compadre's Flowers and Liquor in 2002, and 2005's solid Little Rock set him up as a reliable draw on the barroom circuit, where the fools on stools and endless red-eyed mornings naturally bled into his songs. A couple more years of relentless gigging and an extended stay on the Bolivar Peninsula (back when there was a Bolivar Peninsula) resulted in last year's landmark Trouble in Mind, and suddenly songs like "Beaumont," "I Got a Gig," "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" and "She Left Me for Jesus" were all Americana-philes from coast to coast and across the pond could talk about. (A follow-up is due in May.) Carll's Houston-area compadres took notice too: Last year's post-Christmas show took place in Warehouse Live's Studio; this year he's been upgraded to the Ballroom. Maybe you can go home again.

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