I’m Tony, and these are my April picks….
Arron Watson (w/Asleep at the Wheel) – Honky Tonkin’ Round TexasÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Aaron Watson is from Austin, Texas, playing Texas Country Music.Â I like him so much that I’m repeating him this month, after using a song of his in February’s contest.Â In the one I’ve chosen this month, “Honky Tonkin’ Around Texas”, Aaron is joined by one of my all-time favorite groups, Asleep At The Wheel, led by Ray Benson, also from Austin. Ray Benson has also co-produced several of Aaron’s cds. When I got Aaron’s permission to play his music, I told him that I already had 4 of his cds, so he sent me 3 more to “fill out my collection” of his music. This song is from one of those cds, “The Honky Tonk Kid”, which is available from Amazon.com through Hoss’s store link. On that cd, he also does songs with Willie Nelson and Dale Watson. He also sent me a religious cd of his, “The Barbed Wire Halo”, featuring Billy Joe Shaver doing bible readings, which Mrs. Hoss will probably be including in her Sunday morning show on HTB (coming sometime… soon? well, that’s a subjective thing) …
Band of Heathens – Unsleeping EyeÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- The Band of Heathens are from Austin, Texas, playing Rock, Americana and Soul Music. They’re a 5 man group, led by Ed Jurdi on harmonica, keyboard, guitar and vocals. They were formed in early 2006 when several of the members got together and started doing live sets together at Austin’s Club Momo every Wednesday night. Then, a misprint in a newspaper listed them as The Heathens, and the name stuck. They now describe their music as Country-Soul-Rock & Roll and have 3 cds to their credit, all available through Hoss’s store link to LoneStarMusic.com or Amazon, “Live At Momo’s”, “Live At Antone’s” and their first studio cd, self-titled, which has several musical guests sitting in, like Patty Griffin, Stephen Bruton, Gurf Morlix, and Ray Wylie Hubbard.Â It was also produced by Hubbard.Â I’ve chosen their song “Unsleeping Eye” off “Live at Antone’s” for their contest entry…..
Billy Joe Shaver – Georgia On a Fast Train (Buy, Dang It)
- Billy Joe Shaver is an old favorite of mine, playing Texas Country Music, and hails from Waco, Texas. I’ve chosen his song “Georgia On A Fast Train” for his contest entry off his Greatest Hits cd. He currently has 9 cds available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon.com, including his latestÂ “Everybody’s Brother”.Â He’s done recordings for TV as well, such as the Cartoon Network show “Squidbillies’” that he does the theme song for, and another cartoon,Â produced by Kinky Friedman during his failed campaign for Governor of Texas, called “Kinky Toons”.Â Lately, his music has taken a decidedly religious tone. He’s appeared on a couple of Aaron Watson’s cds doing scripture readings, and did a religious cd produced by John Carter Cash in the Cash Cabin Studio, featuring an appearance by Kris Kristofferson….
blacktopGYPSY – Ain’t Your Mama (Buy, Dang It)
- blacktopGYPSY is from the North Texas area, playing Americana, Texas Country & Acoustic Music. They’re a 6 person group, led by Andie Kay Joiner on vocals and Heather Stalling on fiddle & back-up vocals. Heather is the wife of famed Texas musician Max Stalling, who actually recommended her group to me.Â They have one self-titled cd out, which is available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon. Joyner & Stalling co-produced the cd, along with Austin resident Adam Odor, at the Cedar Creek Studios there. They sent me that cd, which has been entered into the computerized rotation on HTB, and I’ve since donated it to the “give-away box”. By the way, we still haven’t figured out how to give these cds away to our listeners.Â Got any ideas?……
- COODER GRAW was a 4 man group from Amarillo that generated alot of buzz on the Texas Music scene over their 9 year history. They were known for their unique version of loud,Â raucous country music. They released their first self-titled cd in 2000, produced by Ray Benson of Asleep at the Wheel, and followed it with 2 live albums, (including a Billy Bob’s),Â and another studio one. They soon became a staple on Texas country radio stations, especially after one of their songs “Llano Estacado” was picked for a Dodge TV commercial. They released their final studio cd in 2005, entitled “Wake Up!”, and disbanded in 2006. All of their cds are available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon.com. I’ve chosen their version of the Waylon Jennings’ classic “Ain’t Livin’ Long Like This” off the “Texas Outlaws” compilation cd for their entry in this month’s contest…
- Darren Kozelsky is from Dallas, Texas, playing Texas Country, Rock and “Other” Music.Â Darren leads a 5 man group, The Darren Kozelsky Band, doing lead vocals and rhythm guitar, backed up by Chris Claridy on lead guitar and vocals. They have a debut cd out called “Let Your Mind Fly” available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon. I’ve chosen Darren and Chris’s version of the song “Corpus Christi Bay”,Â from the Robert Earl Keen tribute cd “Undone” for their entry in the contest….
Donna The Buffalo – Tides of Time (Buy, Dang It)
- Donna The Buffalo is a 4 man, 1 woman, (Tara Nevins), group from Trumansburg, New York, playing Americana, Alternative Country and Folk Rock Music. They’ve been a favorite of mine for years, and were the 3rd group to give me permission to play their music on HTB last April. I’ve chosen their song “Tides Of Time” off their cdÂ “Rockin’ In The Weary Land” for their entry in this month’s contest, mainly because it’s my 9 year old granddaughter,Â Brianna’s,Â favorite song. She dances around the house listening to this cd, and tells me she’s a member of their “herd”, which is what Donna The Buffalo calls their fans. They have 6 cds available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon, including their latest effort,Â entitled “Silverlined”…
Drive By Truckers – Tornadoes (Buy, Dang It)
- Drive-By Truckers are a 5 man group from Athen’s Georgia,Â playing Rock, Indie and Southern Rock Music. They’ve also been a favorite of mine for years, and were the 4th group to give me permission to play their music last April. (It’s hard to believe I’ve been doing this for a year already!) The group has been on tour almost constantly since 2001, until they finally took a break to do some studio work in 2007, producing their latest cd “Brighter Than Creation’s Dark”. They’re currently on an Austrailian concert tour.Â DBT has produced a Southern Rock Opera about life in the South, including the Lynyrd Skynyrd plane crash, that has to be heard to be believed. They have 9 cds available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon, including “The Dirty South”, which contains the song I’ve chosen for their entry in the contest “Tornadoes”…
Heartland – Boys Like UsÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Heartland is a 5 man group, led by Jason Albert,Â from Huntsville, Alabama, playing Country Music. I first ran across them on MySpace and liked their music, so I sent them a friend request with a note asking for permission to play it. Not only were they all for it, they even sent me their cd “I Loved Her First”,Â from which I’ve chosen the song “Boys Like Us” for their entry in the contest. They have 2 cd’s available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon…
Highspeed Hayride – Before the Sun (Buy, Dang It)
- HighSpeed Hayride is a 4 man group from Goliad, Texas, playing what they describe as “Straight-up Southern Texas Country Music”. They currently have 3 cds available through Hoss’s store link to LoneStarMusic.com, including their latest self-titled release, which contains the song I’ve chosen from them for this month’s contest, “Before The Sun (I Don’t Wanna Go Home)”. I picked another song from that cd (Boots) for them as one my picks in the first Hossey Music Awards Song-Voting Contest last November, but they didn’t make the cut to remain in the top 5. Let’s hope they do much better this time!!!!!
JD & The Straight Shot – Double My Order (Buy, Dang It)
- JD & The Straightshot are from New York, New York, playing Blues and Classic Rock Music, or, as JD puts it, “classic rock songs for the classic rock generation”. Jim Dolan (JD) said he found himself in an enviable position shortly after the release of his band’s 2005 debut cd release “Nothing To Hide”, when his band was offered the job of touring as the opening act for the reunion of Joe Walsh’s band “The James Gang” for the summers of 2006 and 2007.Â In June of last year, the band came out with their much-anticipated 2nd cd “Right On Time”, which included guest appearances by Joe Walsh on lead guitar. Both of their cds are available from Amazon through Hoss’s music store link.Â I’ve chosen what I refer to as “the fat man’s song”, “Double My Order, Please” off “Right On Time” for their entry in the contest….
Jackson Taylor and the Sinners – Humbolt County GrownÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Jackson Taylor & The Sinners are from Austin, Texas, playing Texas Country, Southern Rock and Rockabilly Music.Â Jackson was one of 11 children born to parents who were migrant workers, and spent much of his childhood years living a nomadic existence that, he says, became the basis of his deep-rooted love of Country Music.Â He said he and his father used to leave the work camps at night and go into town to see and hear such Texas Country greats as Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Billy Joe Shaver.Â Jackson said he combined his real-life experiences with old-school country elements, mixed in with punk and Southern Rock, to create a musical style that’s all his own. He has 2 cds to his credit, both available through Hoss’s store link to LoneStarMusic.com. I’ve chosen his song “Humboldt County Grown” from his cd “Live, Locked & Loaded at the Longhorn Saloon” for his entry in the contest.Â Listen to the lyrics, it’s about smoking California pot with a hippie girl who “blows his mind!”….
Jimmy & David Lee Kaiser – Best TimesÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Jimmy & David Lee Kaiser hail from Beaumont, Texas, playing Texas Country, Americana and Southern Rock Music. I was turned on to them by JaimeÂ (not Jimmy) Talbert, who told Hoss and me, during an interview in February’s song-voting contest, that the Kaiser brothers were an integral part of the burgeoning Beaumont music scene. I ordered all 3 of the Jimmy Kaiser Band cds from MyTexasMusic.com, and they should now have been entered into the computerized rotation on HTB.Â I’ve chosen the song “Best Times” from the cd “Spurlock Road” for their entry in this contest.Â I told my lovely wife, Peggy, that I thought Jimmy Kaiser sounded like Cody Canada on some songs, and she said she thought he sounded like Pat Green or Bruce Robison.Â Either way, it’s all good!Â All of their cds are definitely worth owning….
Marshall LawÂ – Blow Away My BluesÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Marshall Law is a solo act from Nashville, Tennessee, playing Country, Southern Rock and Blues Music. Marshall says he was born the son of a Baptist preacher and was constantly fighting with his dad until, at the age of 14 he picked up his first guitar and started singing and writing songs. The rest, as they say, is music history.Â He has 2 cds available through his MySpace page or Hoss’s store link to Amazon, his first, “Long Arm Of The Law”, from which I’ve chosen his contest entry “Blow My Blues Away” (listen closely to the lyrics), and his latest “Half Alive and Still Kickin’”. When I asked him for permission to play his music on HTB, and told him some of the other groups we’re playing, he was all for it. He also said he’s good friends with Billy Joe Shaver’s son Clay, so he’s glad I chose Billy Joe for this contest, too. He also told me he loves Corpus Christi and all the beautiful women here….
Max Stalling – No Kinda DancerÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Max Stalling is from Dallas, Texas, playing Texas Country Music. Max says he got his start in music late in life, after receiving a Master’s degree in food science from Texas A&M University in College Station. He then went to work, first for Rainbow Bread, and then in product development for snack-food giant Frito-Lay.Â Max said he started listening to Texas music on a radio station in Dallas about 10 years ago, liked what he heard, and decided to write and perform some of that kind of music himself.Â Now he has 5 cds to his credit, all available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon.Â He said he still considers himself a writer first, and a performer second, but he has a first-rate back-up band and puts on a hell of a stage show. I’ve chosen his version of the song ” No Kinda Dancer” from the REK tribute cd “Undone” for his entry in this month’s contest….
Pribek – SalvationÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Pribek is from Kimberling City, Missourri, playing Rock, Southern Rock and Blues Music. A student and avid performer of the guitar for nearly 30 years, Jack Pribek didn’t start writing music seriously until about 5 years ago. He’s now produced an all-original debut cd called “Trouble Ain’t Over”, available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon, or from his website. My son Joshua turned me on to Pribek’s music, so I looked him up on MySpace, sent him a friend request with a note asking permission to play his music, and , not only got his permission, but he sent me his cd to play on my show and on HTB.Â He also posted a comment on my MySpace page, (which tells people I’m “hard as a bois d’arc fencepost”), saying “If it stays that way for more than 4 hours, I should see a doctor!”….
Robert Earl Keen (w/Cody Canada) – Road Goes On ForeverÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Robert Earl Keen is from Kerrville, Texas, playing Texas Country, Americana and Folk Music. Anyone who’s read my bio knows that REK is somewhat responsible for my love of Texas Music, since I got fired from “the accursed” KFTX-fm radio station in Corpus Christi for playing a phone request for his song “Merry Christmas From The Family” one Christmas Eve. I was told the next day that I was fired because a number of people had called in requesting that song all Christmas day, and the other DJs kept telling them that it was not on the station’s narrow-minded, top-ten, Nashville music playlist, but the listeners kept saying “the midnight guy played it”.Â Robert Earl Keen currently has 16 cds available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon.Â I’ve chosen one of my favorite REK songs “The Road Goes On Forever” for his entry in this month’s contest. This version is from his tribute cd “Undone” and features Cody Canada of Cross Canadian Ragweed on guitar….
Roger Creager – Guitar Town (Buy, Dang It)
- Roger Creager is originally from Corpus Christi, Texas, but now spends most of his time in Houston, or on the road,Â playing Texas Country Music.Â I chose a song from him for last January’s contest,Â his classic “The Everclear Song”,Â but it didn’t make the cut to stay in the top 5.Â For this month’s contest,Â I’ve chosen his version of Steve Earle’s song “Guitar Town”, off the afore-mentioned “Texas Outlaws” compilation cd.Â Roger currently has 5 cds available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon, or LoneStarMusic.com, including his latest release “Here It Is”.Â He appeared in concert here in Corpus Christi on March 19th at the Brewster Street Icehouse, but, unfortunately, won’t be back here in the near future. His next closest concert is one in San Antonio on May 8th…
Shellee Morris & Twister Alley – DanceÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Shellee Morris lives in Nashville, Tennessee, playing Alternative CountryÂ and Acoustic Music. She’s the former lead singer of the Oklahoma-based group Twister Alley, which had several hits in the early ’90’s with songs like “Nothing In Common But Love”, “Twister Alley”, “Redneck Ways In The U.S.A.” and “Dance”, which I’ve chosen for her entry in this month’s contest.Â It’s off their debut, and only, cd, “Twister Alley”, which is available through Hoss’s store link to Amazon, but you need to hurry if you want to order one, as they are no longer available from the manufacturer, and Amazon has only a limited number of their cds remaining.Â Shellee told me she is currently working on a new cd of Twister Alley-style music, and said she will be sending me one as soon as it comes out to be entered into the HTB computer. Be listening….
Slow Rollin’ Lows (w/Jamie Talbert) – Drunks, Hippies and RednecksÂ (Buy, Dang It)
- Slow Rollin’ Lows are from Beaumont, Texas, playing Texas Country & Southern Rock Music. They’re a 4 man group, led by Calvin “Pug” Johnson on vocals and guitar, along with Orey Williams on bass and harmonica, Jeremy Porter on drums and Neil Jeansonne on lead guitar.Â Except for Neil, they’ve been playing together since 2006, when they were in Hamshire-Fannett High School in East Texas. They were nominated for last year’s Rising Star Award from the Texas Music Awards. They have 3 cds available through Hoss’s store link to LoneStarMusic.com, “One Of These Days”, “Staight Out Of Texas” and their brand new release “Erie Street”, which has just been entered into the rotation on HTB and contains the song I’ve chosen for this month’s contest “Hippies, Drunks & Rednecks”, with Jaime (not Jimmy) Talbert singing along. (Remember, he told us about that during his interview on one of last month’s contest shows.) On “Erie Street”, which, by the way, was produced by Texas musician Phil Pritchett,Â they give an acknowledgement to Billy Joe Shaver, saying “without him, there would be no Slow Rollin’ Lows”…
I got started in broadcasting during my stint as a Signalman in the U.S. Navy during the Viet Nam era, working part-time as a DJ and newsman for a ship-board Armed Forces Radio & TV station on the USS Truckee out of Norfolk, Virginia.Â After being honorably discharged in 1979, I became a mainstream radio DJ and News Director in the Corpus Christi area for over 25 years on 9 different stations, including all 3 of the country-western ones. During that time I received 4 news broadcasting awards, 1 from the Associated Press & 3 from United Press International. I spent the last 5 years of my “career” on KFTX in Corpus Christi, constantly fighting with the program director over having to play their narrow top-ten Nashville music playlist of songs, when I really wanted to play Texas Music. I was finally shown the door after I played a Christmas-time phone request for Robert Earl Keen’s “Merry Christmas From The Family”, which was definitely not on the station’s playlist, (I really hate that word!). Now that I’m on HossTheBoss I can play what I want. I’m working on getting my own show started on the station by early 2009,Â so I hope you’re listening….
My previous Hossey Music Award Picks