The passing of Texas Johnny Brown last year hit me and a bunch of people pretty hard, so the September 12 death of Crusaders pianist Joe Sample was another slap in the face that many of Houston's musical heroes are closer to the end than the beginning. The latest bad news is that bluesmen I.J. Gosey ... More >>
By 1977, the individual members of the Crusaders were so successful that the pressure to record two albums a year no longer applied. There was no new Crusaders album in 1977, but that doesn't mean the members weren't working, and working hard. Trombonist Wayne Henderson was trying his hand at produ ... More >>
If 1975 was a whirlwind year for Joe Sample, the Crusader who passed away last Friday, 1976 was a full-blown hurricane. The newer, funkier Crusaders were increasingly popular, so much so that United Artists began to repackage and reissue some of the early 1960s Jazz Crusaders tracks the group made f ... More >>
With the wild, platinum-selling commercial success of Joni Mitchell's Court and Spark in 1974, Joe Sample's studio-session career went into warp drive. Throughout the remainder of the decade, he would sprint from one important project to the next. Sample's Crusaders dropped Those Southern Nights in ... More >>
Joe Sample, the Houston native whose masterful keyboard playing made him a leading figure in the jazz fusion movement of the '60s and '70s and a top session musician in jazz, R&B and pop for several decades, passed away Friday night, according to his Facebook page. His family announced his death wit ... More >>
Blondie, X Warehouse Live, September 27 Arguably the two best American bands to come out of the punk era, Blondie and X each personified the late'70s/early-80s rock scenes of New York and L.A, respectively. Fronted by impossibly glamorous Debbie Harry, Blondie mingled downtown CBGB cool with Studio ... More >>
Joe Sample is on a mission. While the illustrious keyboard genius behind the Crusaders continues to expand his career and is as in-demand at 75 as at any point in his life, these days he balances his commercial career with good works. Inducted into the Houston Music Hall of Fame's inaugural class a ... More >>
The silver-anniversary Houston Press Music Awards ceremony was a memorable one.
Tuesday was my eleventh foray to the Houston Press Music Awards, and it was certainly my favorite ever -- excepting maybe the time Molly of Molly and Ringwalds called me out from the stage to insist that her band was "not lame." What made Tuesday night so special? Well, it started like this: I was ... More >>
You know, I think we may have missed a category during Tuesday's Houston Press Music Awards ceremony, because we really should have given ourselves the award for "best awards party throwers ever." I mean, where else are you going to find Willie D, The Hates and Justin Van Sant hanging out together n ... More >>
In honor of the 25th Annual Houston Press Music Awards, we present the Houston Music Hall of Fame.
Working on this week's cover story on Willie Nelson was a blast -- and a blast from the past. One minute I'd be typing and the next the phone would ring. "Hey, this is Johnny Bush, I hear you're doing a story on Willie. Why didn't you call me?" Stuff like that just kept happening. Willie's world ... More >>
What a badass. As chronicled in this week's cover story, there's a reason why Joe Sample is Texas Southern University's artist-in-residence at the school's jazz studies program -- and why he may be able to reinvent TSU's disgraced reputation. Cover Story: The New Crusaders Joe Sample Attempts to ... More >>
TSU restarts its jazz program, tapping into the talents of the fabled Joe Sample and kids looking for a place to play.
Teaching jazz at Texas Southern University was probably the last thing on the mind of Joe Sample when the Phillis Wheatley High School graduate returned to his native Houston after tearing it up in Los Angeles for 40 years. But Sample, who left TSU in 1958 with members of the Jazz Crusaders -- whi ... More >>
Houston's favorite happenin' soul/funk/R&B/rocksteady/ska DJ night, A Fistful of Soul, returns to the Big Top about 10 p.m. this evening. Free. Say happy birthday to DJ Wes Wallace, who has been named "Best Dance Club DJ" by this publication more than ten times, at "Classic Numbers" this evening.
Asleep At The Wheel: Sat., Aug. 20. The Firehouse Saloon. Blue October, Iamdynamite: Sun., Aug. 21, 8 p.m.; Mon., Aug. 22, 8 p.m. House of Blues. Bela Fleck & The Flecktones: Wed., Oct. 12. House of Blues. "Dharmageddon" With B L A C K I E, Roky Moon & BOLT, Fat Tony, Tyagaraja, ListenLis ... More >>
Black History Month is always a great time to recall some of Houston's greatest musical innovators and leaders. Rocks Off will highlight some of them during the remainder of February. "Hey, let's get back to that down-and-dirty old-school chicken-shack sound" mosaicrecords.comWhile Houston ... More >>
[Note: Click on the numbers for parts 1, 2 and 3.] Fifth Ward music mogul Don Robey was so taken with Gatemouth Brown's talents that he built his entire Peacock label around him. Robey already owned the Bronze Peacock night club and various other business interests, but it was his meeting of Br ... More >>
Houston's new downtown jazz digs
For some mysterious reason, most people’s musical knowledge of the YMCA begins and ends with the dance routine depicted here and probably the last wedding you attended. But Houston’s newest outpost of the 163-year-old service organization, located at 5801 West Orem, wants to change that. The Wes ... More >>
Honky-tonk hero explores his hardscrabble Houston roots with an autobiography and a CD
A legendary Houston pianist works to improve Fifth Ward's schools
How is a falling-apart Fifth Ward joint turning out the best burgers in town? Adrian's has history.
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