Television's influence on our musical vocabulary is vast. These days, singing shows are determining new pop stars. A great TV theme can become iconic -- Sanford and Son, Friends, The Sopranos -- and shows like The Simpsons, Family Guy and Scrubs have become legendary for their in-show musical perfor ... More >>
It's that season again. It's time for Houston to be inundated with touring metal, punk and hardcore festivals, from Warped Tour to the All-Stars Tour to the upcoming Summer Slaughter Tour. It's an opportunity for kids to see all their favorite bands from those scenes all crammed together on one mass ... More >>
Merle Haggard Stafford Centre April 1, 2014 Bet you 20 bucks that Keith Richards really digs Merle Haggard. He is one cool cat. The Hag doesn't say much onstage at first, and barely moves apart from gesturing to one band member or another when it's time for a solo. His low-key style has been both ... More >>
Buck 'Em! The Autobiography of Buck Owens By Buck Owens with Randy Poe Backbeat Books, 360 pp., $29.99 Music legend says that bluesman Robert Johnson made his deal with the Devil at the Crossroads. If that's the case, then country legend Buck Owens must have booked his date with Ol' Scratch in the ... More >>
Free Press Summer Fest unveils its pricier 2014 lineup.
Reggie and the Full Effect Warehouse Live, January 24 The side project of Get Up Kids keyboardist James DeWees, Reggie and the Full Effect is an indie band with a sense of humor. Dating back to DeWees' days with Coalesce, when he recorded a joke demo on a cassette tape to hand out at concerts dubbe ... More >>
Black Flag Walters, August 26 Not a heck of a lot of complimentary things have been said about Black Flag's 2013 "reunion," and when fans arrived at Walters in August to discover stage barricades and signs warning against stage-diving and photography, odds weren't looking terrific. But when the hy ... More >>
Friday is traditionally the day the media jettisons its more unpleasant stories, similar to the way the Millennium Falcon escaped that Star Destroyer in The Empire Strikes Back ("...We'll jut float away with the rest of the trash"). Other Friday afternoons the news is just odd, but either way there' ... More >>
Here in Houston, we shouldn't need an excuse to throw great parties, but I suppose the so-called Mayan Apocalypse is a pretty good reason to get shit-housed and listen to local bands. This Friday almost everyone seems to be throwing an "End of the World" show or mini-fest -- if they aren't putting ... More >>
Rosie Flores, known these days affectionately by many as the Rockabilly Filly, has had several careers: Punk rocker, cowpunk alt-country badass, potential country star, rock and roller, and rockabilly queen. Born in San Antonio, she spent her teen years in San Diego before striking out to find a car ... More >>
Photo By Craig HlavatyRex's War Face: The crowd's at June's Free Press Summer Fest were feral and friendly. This week we asked our pool of Rocks Off writers what their favorite shows of 2011 were, the ones that brought joy to their hearts to attend and helped them make magic with a keyboard h ... More >>
Tiger Army's Nick 13 delivered his self-titled solo debut this year, and the lead singer of one of the past decade's biggest psychobilly bands has made one of the most enjoyable traditional country records of 2011 not called Photographs. Yes, this 10-song set from the man you first met on t ... More >>
Dave Alvin is an inveterate troubadour and staunch advocate for Houston's blues history.
The Blow: Fri., July 8. Fitzgerald's. Bury Your Dead, Evergreen Terrace: Sun., July 10. Warehouse Live. CJ Ramone: Sun., July 17. Warehouse Live. The Dear Hunter, Wild Orchid Children: Mon., Aug. 22. Warehouse Live. Dwight Yoakam: Fri., July 8. Arena Theatre. Filter, Saliva: Wed., Aug. ... More >>
Mark C. AustinKings of Leon at Verizon Wireless Theater, October 2008Just a couple of days now before Rocks Off - the person and the blog - proudly presents Shot In the Dark: Houston Press Concert Photography, our first-ever exhibit of live pics we've collected in about three and a half years ... More >>
Photos courtesy of Houston Livestock Show & RodeoGeorge Strait in 1996If you walk through Reliant Center, hanging from the ceiling are banners listing almost every musical performer RodeoHouston has hosted since the '60s. The names reflect the hallowed history of country and fleeting fancies ... More >>
City is ready for another honky-tonk close-up.
The Jungle Rockers are wound too tight for Vietnam...what about Texas?
From time to time, Rocks Off thought we'd ask both local and touring musicians to tell us the worst gig they've ever played, in the hopes that the next one won't be quite so awful. We asked Houston honky-tonk transplant Mike Stinson, whose new CD The Jukebox In Your Heart is now in regular rotation ... More >>
Photos by Charlie McGovernl-r: Ramsay Midwood, Kip Boardman, Tony Gilkyson, Don Heffington, Larry Hosford, 1998 We've just listened to his duet with Larry Hosford on "Reno Is a Late Night Town," and Mike Stinson looks up and grins like he's just heard Dwight Yoakam is going to cut another one of ... More >>
Is Houston ready for country? Again?
farm1.static.flickr.com/I.J. Gosey We have a winner in our Live Nation "Club Passport" photo contest - we think - but are still awaiting a judge's ruling. Stay tuned. Live Nation has expanded its "No Service Fee" promotion once again, to include pretty much every show coming to House of Blues ... More >>
Markus CuffHonky-tonk man and recent Houston transplant Mike Stinson knows a thing or two about a bottle. Lonesome Onry and Mean asked him to list his all-time favorite drinking songs, many of which you will no doubt hear this evening at Under the Volcano. "So many classic drinking songs, I could ... More >>
The loquacious Irishman is pathologically incapable of keeping his opinions to himself.
Photos by Craig HlavatyAftermath always wondered what it was like to not be known to the public by your birth name, but by the name of your band. In the beginning, some club owners thought that David Lee Roth's name was Van Halen. I'm sure somewhere along the line Ian Anderson was called Jethr ... More >>
Photos by William Michael Smith I've never been a particularly big Raul Malo fan. Sure, he and his Mavericks had a few stellar singles that were pure gold from the first note, most notably (for me anyway) the Dwight Yoakam-ish twanger "All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down." But my significant other, a ... More >>
Paging Rev. Gibbons... It's not entirely unwarranted - something about Wall Street being in free fall - but outside the Houston area, our recovery from Ike is rapidly receding from the headlines. Before it gets buried any further, Rocks Off would like to take this opportunity to point out he hasn't ... More >>
Photos by Matt Smith Per our recent blog pondering the slow death of honky tonk and the wisdom of pursuing that genre as a career path, after Heybale!’s masterful show at the Continental Club I think it’s safe to assume that honky-tonk is still alive, even if only as a few enclaves among the ba ... More >>
The late, great Harlan Howard, the songwriter behind “Heartaches by the Number,” “I Fall to Pieces,” “Streets of Baltimore” and “Why Not Me” (among countless others), once famously said country music is “three chords and the truth.” And the truth is that many relationships – mo ... More >>
Panning for gold in an avalanche of 2007 releases
It's Johnny Falstaff's time to "Shine"
4 p.m. Sunday, March 19, in-store at Sig's Lagoon, 3710 Main, 713-533-9525; 7 p.m. show at McGonigel's Mucky Duck, 2425 Norfolk, 713-528-5999
Sunday, May 15, at McGonigel's Mucky Duck, 2425 Norfolk, 713-528-5999.
U.S. Maple, G.W.A.R., Citizen Cope, AM60 and Radney Foster
Sharp Dressed Men: A Tribute to ZZ Top (RCA)
Panic Room is a great movie -- if you've never seen one
Jesse Dayton knows a great many words - and how to sell them
First-rate acting elevates this film beyond its familiar plot
Thornton's haunting, droll Sling Blade draws rich blood