Recently Released Recordings!!:
The Crockett Chronicles:
K. R. Wood has released
his newest edition of the "Father's of Texas" CD series, the "Crockett
Chronicles". We all know the legendary story of Davy Crockett and
the fight at the Alamo, but K. R. Wood brings the story to life
with narrations from the writings and stories of the various people
there and music (which sets the story in the heart). Through
favorite songs, like the "Ballad of Davy Crockett" and the "Green Leaves
of Summer", a variety of original songs K. R. wrote especially for this
project (based upon his research), and a variety of period fiddle tunes
in honor of Davy Crockett, the fiddler, K. R. weaves this tale of Texas
through the mind. From start to finish, the CD plays like a movie
in the mind. And for those who are interested in learning what
"fiddle-style harmonica" can sound like, we paired my harmonica with the
expert fiddling of "Sweet" Mary Hattersley in a rough jam situation
somewhat reminiscent of the music that actually was played at the Alamo
until the Mexicans breached the walls. So, get the CD, and listen
to Crockett and McGregor play their fiddle and bagpipes at the Alamo and
tell you the story that set Texas on its way to independence. (K.
R. 's CD can be ordered at
Jim Strickland's new gospel CD:
Jim Strickland has
released his new gospel album to his anxious and appreciative audience.
They have been chomping at the bit for this release of his original
gospels and are finally sated. If you want to see what everyone is
all up about, order his CD at
www.frontroommusic.com. Keep tabs on Jim. He is getting
ready to release another CD sometime this year.
Central Texas Bluegrass Association
band sampler CD:
The Central Texas
Bluegrass Association is proud to present their CD sampling some of
their finest bands. This long awaited CD has top-knotch bluegrass
music from deep within the heart of Texas. Both economical and
special, this CD boasts 28 tunes (both original and traditional) from 14
bands and only costs $10. (The association is using this CD as a
fund raiser.) If you would like to hear central Texas' finest
bluegrass, order your CD at
HOOT'n in Houston!:
If you are a harmonica player in
the Houston area (Tx.), then this may be the club for you!
The Houston Chapter of HOOT meets every 3rd Wednesday at 7:30pm. in Room E252 East, Tomball Community College (30555 Tomball Parkway, Tomball, Tx.). For more information, check out the Houston chapter of HOOT at www.hoottexas.com or contact Gary Johnson.
HOOT'n in Austin:
If you are a harmonica player in the Austin area (Tx.), then you ought to drop by a meeting and say "Hello" -- maybe even give us thought or two or a tune off of your harp. (Each meeting ends with a little show-and-tell jam.)
Our meetings include club business and discussions, but often also
include a workshop or lesson of some sort. We are a small group, but we are talented and growing. We typically meet at the Dougherty Arts Center, 1110 Barton Springs Road, in the main auditorium on the 2nd Monday of the month. To check the next meeting date, go to www.hoottexas.com - Austin chapter - meetings or email Tom Stevens.
click here to hear a music sample
The High Stakes Rollers, a skilled and talented bluegrass variety group based in Austin, Tx., have produced a CD of their live performances. On that CD, I am honored with an appearance playing harmonica on the swing/bluegrass tune "Little Rock Getaway". To get your own CD for $10, email Cara Cooke or
More information and
materials are available from Eddie Collins at
Bluegrass Harmonica Workshop:
The Old Settlers Music Festival (Salt Lick Pavillion, Austin, Tx.), is getting ready for the next festival (April 17-20, 2003).
For the last 3 years I have given a bluegrass harmonica workshop at this
festival that has been very well received. If you are interested in bluegrass harmonica,
then put this festival on your schedule.
The festival line-up every year is exceptional. Plenty of bluegrass. Plenty of other stuff.
Last year they included a young musicians contest. They have four simultaneous stages to keep you busy
all day long and through most of the night. Check out www.oldsettlersmusicfest.org for more information.
Austin Friends of
Traditional Music have asked me to lead a harmonica workshop
for their annual festival at the Dougherty Arts Center (1110 Barton
Springs Road, Austin, Texas) on Saturday, Feb. 1st, 2003 (5pm.)
The festival begins at noon with a show from the great Scottish
singer/songwriter Ed Miller, and just gets better from there with shows
from the Double Eagle String Band, the Grazzmatics, the Slim Richey
Dream Band, ... There will be music and various dance and
instrument workshops from noon until midnight. Come visit!
The South Texas Music Festival
has also asked me to lead their harmonica workshop
for their annual festival
in Mercedes, Texas (near the Mexican border). This festival is a
great music festival with a wide variety of acts (national and local)
and a wide variety of contests -- including the Texas International
Harmonica Contest (the only harmonica contest I've found in Texas so
far). This festival is frequented by musicians from all over the
country (not just from Texas), many of whom are the best exports their
part of the country may have to offer. Come down and join us!
[The workshops and contest are currently scheduled for Friday, Feb.
Visit the webpage of harmonica legend, Lonnie Glosson. Known as the "talkin' harmonica man", he fascinated audiences with his harmonica from the stage and over the radio until the age of 92 (a testament to the healthful benefits of playing the harmonica and of playing music in general). From the 1920's to the 1950's he traveled the country playing the harmonica in shows and on the radio, including a bit on WLS Radio (Chicago) and the Grand Ol' Opry. He even found himself on the television show "Hee Haw" in the 1970's. With his harmonica playing partner, Wayne Raney, he wrote the song, "Why Don't You Haul Off and Love Me." Lonnie's composition "Matthew 24" has been recorded by both Kitty Wells and George Jones.
Recordings of Lonnie's music, and the music of harmonica legends Deford Bailey and Wayne Raney, can be obtained from Lonnie's website at www.lonnieglosson.com for a very reasonable price. Many of these recordings are rare and are a must have for any avid bluegrass/country blues harmonica player. Add some to your collection!
Camp Bluegrass & Swing Camp is
gearing up for 2003
Camp Bluegrass & Swing Camp 2003 is scheduled for the
week of July 21 through July 25, 2003, and
will be held on the South Plains College campus,
1401 College Ave. Levelland, Texas 79336. Camp Bluegrass'
faculty this year will include
Bill Keith, Alan Munde, Wayne Shrubsall,
Gerald Jones, Roland White, Steve Smith, Adam Granger, Dix Bruce, Jim
Nunally, Dede Wyland, Ed Marsh, Joe Carr, Dale Morris, Bill Bryson [bass
teacher extraordinaire], Tim McCasland. It was a blast last year,
and we learned a lot. Swing Camp (with
Slim Richey) was also a blast last year and will be again this year.
With instruction, room, and board totaling less than $500, you can take an economical vacation for a week and learn about your favorite music or instrument at the same time! These camps are worth the trip! Try them out!
Note: While bluegrass harmonica is not one of the "official" study topics offered at Camp Bluegrass, I
expect to be there again this year and I always like to meet and trade information with fellow harmonica players when I find them -- and there usually are a couple. If you want to ask them to include harmonica in their week of instruction, email them. An email address is provided for just such things on
their website. They always encourage and listen to ideas, suggestions, requests, and feedback.
Catch the Manchaca AllStars...
The Manchaca AllStars are at their home venue (the Manchaca Firehall) every 2nd Friday of the month: 7:30 pm.-10:30 pm. (when the cows go home). We take requests -
especially if they are for a harmonica tune!
[Manchaca, Tx. just south of Austin -- FM 1626, just west of where Manchaca Rd. dead-ends. We are in the pavillion beside the fire station.
The fire station itself houses a restaurant with down-home cuisine and
serves as a community center for Manchaca.]
Also catch the Manchaca AllStars on the
available from the
Texas Bluegrass Association. And keep your eyes peeled for the
expected release of the new Manchaca AllStar Live CD -- due to be
released sometime this year. After 20 years of playing together,
we finally decided to take a chance and record ourselves!
Central Texas Bluegrass Association (CTBA) hosts a jam every Sunday afternoon at
Artz Ribhouse beginning at 2pm. in afternoon and going on until the jammers quit, weather invades, or the world comes to an end. Indoor jamming is from 2pm. to 5pm. (The jammers then need to clear out of the way for the evening's band to get started at 6pm.)
Harmonica Organization of Texas
Meet David Chiasson, a harmonica player in the Irish music playing world of Nova Scotia and a great webpage designer
K. R. Wood (the man is a character!)