Kam Franklin onstage with the Houston Symphony in 2017Photo by Marshall Heins II
This week, we celebrate the release of a modern country icon's newest record, the reconciliation of love lost between a group of emo rockers, a recurring live-stream from an introspective singer songwriter, a group of locals hoping to help out our ailing venues and one of our era's most visionary artists. Keep scrolling to see what's on tap for the next seven days.
Tim McGraw 8 p.m. CST – August 21
Tim McGraw is the essence of modern country. The Louisiana native has a penchant for writing songs promoting the Southern lifestyle set to pop-country melodies, including the likes of “Outlaw,” “Don’t Take The Girl,” “Just To See You Smile” and “I Like It, I Love It.” He sings of women and miniskirts, of barbecues and fishing, of love, marriage and children. He’s an old-fashioned, southern gal’s dream, and he makes men want to be cowboys. Celebrating the release of his 15th studio album Here On Earth, McGraw will live stream a concert on Friday night.
Anberlin 7:30 p.m. - August 21
Massive hooks, catchy choruses and plenty of emotion catapulted Anberlin into the hearts of many an angsty teenager in the mid 2000s. The group released seven studio albums before disbanding in 2014, only to reunite for a single show in 2018. Shortly after that, the Florida-based rock outfit announced a U.S. tour, which included a stop in Houston about a year ago. A live stream of 2003’s Blueprints For The Black Market was postponed after a few members of Anberlin tested positive for COVID-19, but everyone has since recovered. It's unclear whether these quarantine reunions - the third of which is this Friday - are the beginning of a new chapter or just another chance for fans to catch the band's farewell tour, so longtime listeners should be sure to see Anberlin perform while they can.
Ron Pope 7:30 p.m. CST – August 22
Ron Pope has been compared to the likes of Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen. The fiercely independent, brutally candid indie-rocker has racked up quite a few accolades over the past decade and a half, drumming up a dedicated fanbase along the way. The recent birth of his daughter and a near-death experience led to some of Pope's most sincere, heartfelt songs to date, which made their way onto his 14th outing Bone Structure, which was released in March. The Georgia-born, Nashville-based rocker – who, like most artists, has been relegated to live-streaming his performances – will host his 30th “Live! And In Sweatpants” show this Saturday.
Björk 11 a.m. CST – August 23
After releasing her debut album at the tender age of 11, Björk went on to become an international success 20 years later with Homogenic, which received critical acclaim both in her native Iceland and abroad. By combining electronic elements with string arrangements, Björk crafted one of the most unique and ambitious albums of the ‘90s. Forty years into her career, the Icelandic singer continues to be a force. Her last solo outing, 2017’s Utopia, received a Grammy nod for Best Alternative Music Album. Performing from Harpa Hall in Reykjavík, Björk will be accompanied by the Hamrahlíð Choir this Sunday for what should be one of the more memorable live-streams since the Covid-19 pandemic put a damper on everything. Twenty percent of the proceeds from the event will be donated to women’s charities of Björk's choosing.
Kam Franklin, Fat Tony, Hayes Carll 7p.m. CST – August 24
Beginning on Monday, nearly two dozen artists will live-stream concerts for seven consecutive days to raise money for Houston music venues that have been forced to close because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Live performers include The Suffers’ Kam Franklin, who has been giving fans a healthy dose of soulful vocals and encouraging lyrics since the lockdown began, and fellow Houstonians Fat Tony, Hayes Carll, B L A C K I E and more. The full lineup, benefiting the likes of Satellite Houston, The Secret Group, Old Quarter Acoustic Cafe, Rudyard's, Dan Electros and Red Dwarf HT – will be released later today.
KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE...
Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Matt is a regular contributor to the Houston Press’ music section. He graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in print journalism and global business.
Matt first began writing for the Press as an intern, having accidentally sent his resume to the publication's music editor instead of the news chief. After half a decade of attending concerts and interviewing musicians, he has credited this fortuitous mistake to divine intervention.