Picture this: You're hanging out at a bar, guzzling down some cheap beers, getting just wasted enough to enjoy yourself. And then, the DJ plays a song -- not just any song, but a song that wakes you up, a song that makes you question everything you've ever known, a song that makes you stand up and testify, like someone at Sunday mass after a night of fornicating. That's what it feels like when DJ Mod Scott plays, say, a long-lost version of "All I Do Is Think About You," performed by Tammi Terrell and written by Stevie Wonder. A new and much-needed addition to Houston's DJ community, Scott is an avid collector of rare mid-20th-century soul, pop and reggae, and spends some of his nocturnal time playing his treasures at clubs and gatherings. Scott plays at Helios (411 Westheimer, 713-526-4648) on Tuesday nights, so head over there listen while he makes you realize that happiness is just one Stevie Wonder-penned song away.

It's his "Corporate Hip Hop Sux" shirt that has been known to start confrontations -- not because of its blunt statement emblazoned in six three-letter rows, but because everyone wants to say they were the first to wear it. Like an Astros throwback jersey, the "Corporate Hip Hop Sux" shirt is an article of clothing that causes heads to do double takes and tongues to wag. The following is an actual overheard exchange: "I was the first to buy that shirt!" "Oh, yeah, well I was the first to think about buying that shirt, so there!" B-Boy Craig (also known as BBC) has many other shirts up for grabs, which he sells mostly at rap concerts and hip-hop club nights put on by fellow Reprogram Music clique members (Ceeplus, Samplistik, Witnes). E-mail the designer at info@reprogrammusic.com to see where he'll be selling his shit-starting wardrobe next.

It's his "Corporate Hip Hop Sux" shirt that has been known to start confrontations -- not because of its blunt statement emblazoned in six three-letter rows, but because everyone wants to say they were the first to wear it. Like an Astros throwback jersey, the "Corporate Hip Hop Sux" shirt is an article of clothing that causes heads to do double takes and tongues to wag. The following is an actual overheard exchange: "I was the first to buy that shirt!" "Oh, yeah, well I was the first to think about buying that shirt, so there!" B-Boy Craig (also known as BBC) has many other shirts up for grabs, which he sells mostly at rap concerts and hip-hop club nights put on by fellow Reprogram Music clique members (Ceeplus, Samplistik, Witnes). E-mail the designer at info@reprogrammusic.com to see where he'll be selling his shit-starting wardrobe next.

A guitarist, songwriter, music journalist, record producer and bandleader, Guy Schwartz is omnipresent on the Houston scene. His New Jack Hippies "band" now boasts more than a hundred members, based on Schwartz's open admissions policy: If you jam with him once, you're a New Jack Hippie for life. Schwartz's recent collaborations and productions include the pro-marijuana compilation Texas Homegrown Collective, blues albums with Gloria Edwards and Little Joe Washington, a platter with honky-tonker Opie Hendrix and street poet Kool B, numerous columns in Houston Music News, weekly gigs and a variety of jam sessions. And that's not all: His remembrance of Lionel Hampton, posted to the "Music Thoughts" mailing list (groups.yahoo.com/group/musicthoughts/message/27806) was selected by Canadian rock critic Jason Weiss as one of the 25 best music-related stories of 2002, ranking Schwartz alongside The New York Times's Ben Ratliff and music-writing dilettantes such as Tom Waits and Roger Ebert.

A guitarist, songwriter, music journalist, record producer and bandleader, Guy Schwartz is omnipresent on the Houston scene. His New Jack Hippies "band" now boasts more than a hundred members, based on Schwartz's open admissions policy: If you jam with him once, you're a New Jack Hippie for life. Schwartz's recent collaborations and productions include the pro-marijuana compilation Texas Homegrown Collective, blues albums with Gloria Edwards and Little Joe Washington, a platter with honky-tonker Opie Hendrix and street poet Kool B, numerous columns in Houston Music News, weekly gigs and a variety of jam sessions. And that's not all: His remembrance of Lionel Hampton, posted to the "Music Thoughts" mailing list (groups.yahoo.com/group/musicthoughts/message/27806) was selected by Canadian rock critic Jason Weiss as one of the 25 best music-related stories of 2002, ranking Schwartz alongside The New York Times's Ben Ratliff and music-writing dilettantes such as Tom Waits and Roger Ebert.

While the inimitable Little Joe Washington did make this CD in Austin, the man himself is Houston to the bone, as are the sounds on this CD. Little Joe's blues can put a hurt on ya, make you holler out loud and make you want to shake a tail feather, sometimes all in the same song. Those who've only seen him sit in with touring acts at the Continental Club or have only heard his numerous bootleg CDs owe it to themselves to see what the man can do in a recording studio. It will make you think it's still the glory days of the Houston blues.

While the inimitable Little Joe Washington did make this CD in Austin, the man himself is Houston to the bone, as are the sounds on this CD. Little Joe's blues can put a hurt on ya, make you holler out loud and make you want to shake a tail feather, sometimes all in the same song. Those who've only seen him sit in with touring acts at the Continental Club or have only heard his numerous bootleg CDs owe it to themselves to see what the man can do in a recording studio. It will make you think it's still the glory days of the Houston blues.

Even though it's owned by an evil radio monolith, golden oldies station KBME manages to contradict every criticism cast the company's way. You say Clear Channel won't play local music? KBME does -- everything from Grady Gaines to the El Orbits. You say CC doesn't allow personalities to flourish? KBME does, as evidenced by local radio legends Paul Berlin and Ronnie Renfrow. You say CC has rigid playlists and sticks to prefab formats? Not so KBME, where the Beatles abut Louis Armstrong, where Bing Crosby follows the Cherry Poppin' Daddies. Like the Muskogee, Oklahoma, of Merle Haggard's song, KBME is a place where even squares can have a ball.
Even though it's owned by an evil radio monolith, golden oldies station KBME manages to contradict every criticism cast the company's way. You say Clear Channel won't play local music? KBME does -- everything from Grady Gaines to the El Orbits. You say CC doesn't allow personalities to flourish? KBME does, as evidenced by local radio legends Paul Berlin and Ronnie Renfrow. You say CC has rigid playlists and sticks to prefab formats? Not so KBME, where the Beatles abut Louis Armstrong, where Bing Crosby follows the Cherry Poppin' Daddies. Like the Muskogee, Oklahoma, of Merle Haggard's song, KBME is a place where even squares can have a ball.
After KIKK-FM switched to smooth jazz, Houston was left with a mere two country stations. Cox Communications saw an opportunity and seized it. They took a struggling rap station -- the weakest of four in the area -- and flipped the format to classic country. A few months later, it is the No. 1 country station in Houston, and the fifth-place station on the English-language dial. Ironically, KTHT is playing the same songs that KIKK made its name on back in the '60s, '70s and '80s. Now, if they could just add a couple more DJs to tell us about what we're hearing...

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