The story goes that when Joe Ely was six years old, he saw Jerry Lee Lewis play on a flatbed trailer in an Amarillo dust storm. The wind kept blowing the mike over, and everybody in the audience was wearing bandannas over their faces. Joe Ely's shows haven't been as dusty, but they certainly have been as dramatic. While much of his recent work has either been as a duo with longtime cohort accordionista Joel Guzman, with his Flatlander soul brothers Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock, or as part of the supergroup that records as Los Super Seven, Ely has always been first and foremost a flamethrowing rocker. For a rare return to one of his '80s stomping grounds, Fitzgerald's, Ely will be performing in full rock-out mode with bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Chris Layton, best known as Stevie Ray Vaughn's rhythm section Double Trouble.
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Ely has put out so many records the Library of Congress has probably lost count, but he'll release Happy Songs from Rattlesnake Gulch in early 2007, along with a University of Texas Press book of his road poems and blog writings, Bonfire of Roadmaps. His playmates on this night have been involved in numerous musical projects post-Stevie Ray, most notably in the Austin supergroup Storyville. This one should be atomic.