Houston audiences who grow weary of their concert neighbors' incessant chatter and smartphone camerawork should absolutely check out this week's Houston Press cover story that takes a look inside the cozy world of living-room concerts. Inspired by a favorite musician who would be passing through th ... More >>
Emeli Sande House of Blues, July 8 A few years ago, it was Corinne Bailey-Rae, now here comes Emeli Sande to claim the title of the the British Isles' reigning soul starlet. The piano-trained Scottish native, now 26, notched the UK's top-selling debut of last year with Our Version of Events, a nigh ... More >>
Starting this coming weekend, a slew (yes, a slew) of Houston bands will be invading Austin to take part in SXSW's official and unofficial revelry. Grandfather Child, Electric Attitude, Something Fierce, Bagheera and many others will be playing free day parties, showcases and pop-up festivals. Rec ... More >>
Ranking the 30 best Texas albums of the past 30 years seemed like an impossible task. We did it anyway.
40 oz. to Freedom (Sublime Tribute): Fri., July 27, 8 p.m., $7/$10. Scout Bar Clear Lake, 18307 Egret Bay Blvd., Houston. Aesthetic Perfection: Sat., June 16, 9 p.m., $15. Numbers, 300 Westheimer, Houston. Alpha Rev: Sat., May 19, 8 p.m., $12/$15. Jet Lounge, 1515 Pease St., Houston. America: Thu ... More >>
For the second time this month, East Texas cops have broken up a moonshining operation. The latest case took place near Tyler, in tiny New Chapel Hill. Smith County Constables seized two stills belonging to one man whom they have charged with a misdemeanor, with more charges possibly pending. Cops ... More >>
Today, March 2, is Texas Independence Day, the day a bunch of old white politicians and landowners declared this part of the Mexican state of Coahuila y Tejas to be its own sovereign republic in a cabin near Washington-on-the-Brazos. For some inexplicable reason, Rocks Off does not have the day off ... More >>
If you think we were flabbergasted by songwriter Bob Cheevers touting his election as 2011 Songwriter of the Year in the Texas Music Awards sponsored by mytexasmusic.com and "sanctioned" (a hedge word that appears frequently in relation to the Texas Music Awards) by the Texas Academy of Music (high ... More >>
Chris Gray Day will be held in Houston, Texas on Saturday, January 14, 2012 at The Continental Club complex, at 3701 Main, affectionately known to locals that live near and haunt the grounds as "The Island". Today Rocks Off gets to announce the first round of bands playing that day's festivities, be ... More >>
Photos by Jason WolterJason Isbell (left) with Amanda Shires on violin.Wow, Rocks Off is a huge fan of Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, but Saturday night this hard-charging band from Muscle Shoals, Alabama got a lesson in Texas big beat. Isbell himself was sitting in the backstage area while J ... More >>
Jason Isbell sees a glimmer of hope in his true-to-life melancholy story-songs.
One of the truly gifted Texas songsmiths, James McMurtry has carved a nice, viable career out of great lyrics, stellar playing, hard touring, a good work ethic, and common sense. His last two studio albums, Childish Things (2005) and Just Us Kids (2008), established McMurtry as one of the mos ... More >>
Captain America, Marvel's newest superhero movie, comes out today. We'll pause until the excitement passes. ... Rocks Off likes Captain America. The three comic books we read with any regularity as a scupper were Cap, Batman (Detective Comics), and Spider-Man. But we love America. The land ... More >>
Photos by Jason WolterIn spite of a lifetime of healthy living that includes vegetarianism, martial arts, and an aversion to drugs and alcohol, Dick Dale, King of the Surf Guitar, realizes that he has a date with Grim Reaper. In our interview this week, Dale described the litany of medical pr ... More >>
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 >>
(Your reading enjoyment of the following story will be greatly enhanced if you play the video below at the same time.) In our second Only in East Texas story in as many days, we bring you what sounds very much like a true-life scene from James McMurtry's "Chocktaw Bingo"... At 1:45 in the wee ho ... More >>
someecards.comJames McMurtry, "Memorial Day": Rocks Off has no idea what we're going to be doing on Memorial Day; we just know we're not going to be here, as in the office. We suspect Leon's Lounge will be involved somehow, because it usually is. But you should be here, as in on this very ... More >>
Photos by Jason WolterHayes Carll Warehouse Live December 28, 2010 It was almost New Year's Eve, just not cold as hell for Houston. For the third year in a row, Woodlands native Hayes Carll shambled back from Austin for his post-Christmas show at Warehouse Live, which might explain why the ... More >>
Uncle Slaton's got his Texan prideBack in the thickets with his Asian brideHe's got an Airstream trailer and a Holstein cowStill makes whiskey 'cause he still knows how -- James McMurtry, "Chocktaw Bingo" Thanks to an informant's tip, a real-life Uncle Slaton was busted earlier this month in Smith C ... More >>
In the third in our continuing series on the music of the five states of Texas, we examine the fictional state of New Texas, comprising Austin and the Hill Country. See Part 1 here and Part 2 here. New Texas Capital: Austin Patron Saint: Willie Nelson Lesser Icons: Roky Erickson/Thirteenth Floor ... More >>
View Five States of Texas in a larger map As any proud Texan can tell you, the Lone Star State is entitled constitutionally to split into five states if it so wishes. The scenario has rarely been more in the news than it has relatively recently, when Gov. Rick Perry played to the wingnut gallery in ... More >>
Each Wednesday, Rocks Off arbitrarily appoints one lucky local performer or group "Artist of the Week," bestowing upon them all the fame and grandeur such a lofty title implies. Know a band or artist that isn't awful? Email their particulars to email@example.com. It's hard to explain ... More >>
Congrats, TV on the Radio! This morning our sister paper in Manhattan's Cooper Square, the Village Voice, released the results of its annual Pazz & Jop poll, where hundreds of music writers and editors rank their favorite albums of the past year in what has to be an absolute nightmare for th ... More >>
Miss Leslie and Her Juke-Jointers, "Yes Ma'am" Houston's own Miss Leslie Sloan of Miss Leslie and Her Jukejointers was tipped for a slew of honors in the most recent Best of 2008 voting by FAR (Freeform Americana Radio) members. She was voted Female Artist of the Year over Eliza Gilkyson and C ... More >>
One of the original kings of alt-country is experiencing a renaissance
Big Chris Gates and Gatesville perform Friday, March 2, at the Continental Club, 3700 Main, 713-529-9899. James McMurtry also performs.
Houston's old-school punks reunite to aid a stricken legend
Looking back on the '05 and dreaming in the '06
The site of Cindy Sheehan's war protest is crowded with opinions and ghosts
Two Houston-connected musicians offer up different takes on the war. One veteran tells Racket which he thinks is better and why.
...to the ball game. Lauding baseball-in-rock's finest moments.
A South By Southwest diary
Live in Aught-Three (Compadre Records)
Saturday, July 12
Texas Rain: The Texas Hill Country Recordings and The Best of Townes Van Zandt (Tomato)
Saturday, May 4
Colorful characters fill James McMurtry's Tex-rock sound