We've said it before, and will say it again, but one of the things we're proudest of here at Rocks Off are the gifted concert photographers we get to work with. So when one of them puts together an exhibit of work - most of which appeared in these very digital pages - it's the least we can do to thr ... More >>
Nothing earns an musician instant street cred quite like a night or two in the pokey. It's basically a rite of passage -- a guarantee that if you sign up for the public eye, you will, indeed, screw it up at least once in order to delight us with your antics. From the likes of good ol' boys like Mer ... More >>
It's not often that the pop charts will surprise you. After all, the average consumer in most countries doesn't have time to delve too deep into an artist's catalogue. They don't often pick up on songs that will stand the test of time. They like the ephemera record labels tell them is hot right now. ... More >>
This weekend is the big Houston Art Car Parade, where children and adults of all ages can gander at their fellow Houstonians' labors of car love. Each car is a marvel to the ingenuity and the insanity of this race known as the modern Texan. The Art Car festivities have cars on our brains. Rock a ... More >>
Almost half a century ago this month, the Beatles released their first U.S. single, "Please Please Me." Though a fine example of the group's early pop sound, it wasn't an immediate smash in the States. After being issued in England on the EMI-owned Parlophone label on Jan. 12, 1963, Capitol ... More >>
After reading Chris Gray's review of the last Glen Campbell show here in Houston back in September at the Stafford Centre, I was expecting the worst at Campbell's Friday night show at the Arena Theatre. The country legend had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's a few months before the Stafford show, a ... More >>
Out of some of the most proudest moments of my five-year tenure here at the Houston Press - interviewing Rob Halford, talking to an agitated Chuck Berry on a couch backstage after a gig, shaking hands with Charlie Sheen - one of the best days ever was finding a Christmas card in the mail from ... More >>
In the late 1980's, music empresario Jimmy Iovine cobbled together quite a collection of pop and rock artists to record songs for a Christmas album benefitting the Special Olympics. In 1987, A Very Special Christmas was released and rapidly became an instant holiday classic thanks to the star powere ... More >>
Punk Rock EliteThis Friday would have been Z.Z. Hill's 76th birthday, but the popular Texas bluesman passed away in 1984 from a heart attack. Most people only know who the late soul crooner is through his connection to ZZ Top. The moniker of that little ol' band from where we are sitting righ ... More >>
Punk bands like The Clash have been lauded by critics and fans spanning across the globe, while other superb acts like The Carpettes have remained stuck between the cracks of history. This is almost tragic, since their blend of fine-etched, unblemished pop-tinged punk was just as riveting as ... More >>
Today is the 46th anniversary of Keith Richards rolling over in his sleep in a Florida hotel, humming the main riff of "Satisfaction" into a bedside tape recorder and going back to slumber, or nodding off. The Rolling Stones would record the song months later and make it their calling card, t ... More >>
Psychedelic Fur Richard Butler talks Talk Talk Talk redux.
Sunday, Quentin Tarantino, one of the best modern film directors not named Uwe Boll, turns 48 years old. It's hard to believe the beloved hipster director has now been on the public radar for almost 20 years, with his feature-length debut and breakout movie Reservoir Dogs turning the big 2-0 ... More >>
Photos by Marc BrubakerChuck Berry Nutty Jerry's, Winnie March 4, 2011 "Chuck Berry is food" - Keith Richards There is no adequate way to describe the evolutionary gift that Chuck Berry signifies to the world at large. He created everything that we hold dear and true - all the sex, anger, s ... More >>
Each week Rocks Off navigates the treacherous seas of the mysterious Internet, casting nets to bring you the finest and freshest music news from around Houston. Enjoy. Scale The Summit's new album, The Collective, was released this week, and the entire thing is up for streaming on Soundcloud ... More >>
Ed. Note: A reader wrote in Wednesday informing us that the reason Mickey Gilley required assistance moving at Friday's show is because he fell down some stairs in a 2009 accident. After several months at TIRR, where U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is now, Gilley has resumed performing (though not play ... More >>
As part of our ongoing celebration of Elvis' birthday week, Rocks Off asked our writers the simple question in the headline. Chris Gray: Absolutely he still matters. When I was compiling that list of quotes and lyrics about Elvis earlier this week, I wasn't that surprised to see that even Be ... More >>
A quick note before CHL starts this hlist. We define a concert movie as a flick that documents one or more shows on a tour. More narrative-oriented rock flicks like D.A. Pennebaker's Bob Dylan mash note Don't Look Back, Charles Peterson's grunge chronicle Hype!, and of course the lighthearted ... More >>
Photos by David EnsmingerCheetah ChromeBatusis feat. Sylvain Sylvain and Cheetah Chrome Mango's December 10, 2010 "Everything was as it always had been ... the years were a mirage and there had been no years," E.B. White once wrote, describing the collapse of time. This is what Batusis effor ... More >>
Cheetah Chrome and Sylvain Sylvain make rock and roll new again.
Ed. Note: Rocks Off's own Lonesome Onry and Mean himself, William Michael Smith, attended the Rolling Stones concert at Hofheinz Pavilion in June 1972 that was filmed for the movie Ladies and Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones. Since the movie screens at 7:30 p.m. tonight at several Houston-area theaters ... More >>
Last week, when Rocks Off was editing our former intern Matthew Keever's article about the worst back-to-school soundtracks when Jerry Lee Lewis' "High School Confidential" popped into our head out of the blue. Not really out of the blue, we guess, but the next thing we knew we were thinking, ... More >>
Louis Jordan is the guy who originally got the joint jumping
Often written about, mythologized, and showing up in clips on rock docs and YouTube, the 1964 concert movie The T.A.M.I. Show has amazingly never been released in uncut format until now. And though it was shot in black and white, the exuberance and energy of the concert overcomes any pigmentation pr ... More >>
Seven years ago this week, the Dixie Chicks had the No. 1 country single in the U.S. with Bruce Robison's lump-raising "Travelin' Soldier." Meanwhile, in Washington, D.C., the Bush Administration was putting the finishing touches on its Iraqi invasion strategy, which prompted Chicks lead singer Nat ... More >>
Lonesome Onry and Mean vaguely remembers someone telling us a couple of years ago that Las Vegas bookies actually had a line on whether Chuck Berry would die that year (we think it was 2007). The macabre factor aside, remembering this Wednesday got LOM to pondering about the Godfathers of Rock an ... More >>
Son Volt's latest album is steeped in Midwestern musical history.
Back in the summer of1997, one couldn't walk out of their house without hearing someone humming, blaring, or damning to Hell that juicy nugget of pop rock that was Hanson's "MMMBop". Depending on your age and gender, you either understood the hooky genius of the song or you were just in love with t ... More >>
Spinning Blues into Lies
Local filmmaker Raymond Gayle explores how the pioneers of rock became anomalies
The bluesman spends his b-day on stage
Guitar Shorty performs Saturday, January 13, at the Big Easy Social and Pleasure Club, 5731 Kirby, 713-523-9999.
As a young man, Houston born Guitar Shorty was a sideman on shows with artists like BB King, Sam Cooke, Chuck Berry and Ray Charles. But once he became a solo artist, opening spots became harder for him to land. Guitar Shorty spoke with the Houston Press about his new CD We the People. Houston Pre ... More >>
7 p.m. Thursday, March 2, The Proletariat, 903 Richmond, 713-523-1199.
Playing in Chuck Berry's pickup band can be a trial by rock and roll fire
Friday, February 24, at Blanco's, 3406 West Alabama, 713-439-0072. Saturday, February 25, at 2 p.m., in-store performance at Sig's Lagoon, 3710 Main, 713-533-9525.
Live in Aught-Three (Compadre Records)
Searching for the First Rock Song
Ask your local rocker to stop (over-)using his wah-wah pedal
Five decades of Chess Records lead to a blues stalemate
Alternative rock robs pop's cradle