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Texas Music Festival "Promoter" Gets Five Years In The Can

Remember the Texas Music Festival? The multi-day outdoor event that was supposed to happen around the Fourth of July weekend 2008 (we think) in Eleanor Tinsley Park?

Headlined by Los Lobos?

Yeah, Rocks Off doesn't remember it either. Most of it got rained out, but even if the weather was perfect there wouldn't have been much of a festival anyway because it was all a big scam.

That's what a federal judge declared today, sentencing so-called promoter James Watson, Jr. to five years in federal prison for fraud plus three years of supervised release for, among other things, bilking investors in the so-called festival - including an elderly woman and her daughter - out of about $2.5 million and bouncing a $400K check to Bank of America.

"Watson falsely told investors that a charity would be holding the ticket receipts for the concert and promised investors not only return of their investment, but a substantial profit," prosecutors said today.

"In actuality, Watson siphoned investor funds to bankroll an extravagant lifestyle, withdrew the $400,000 from Bank of America from the check kite and disappeared on what was supposed to have been the third day of the Texas Music Festival without paying the artists, vendors or police officers working the event, nor the investors."

Read more in Rocks Off's sister blog Hair Balls.

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray