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Journal Part 3

Part 3 (2000-2006)

Part1 (1944-1982) | Part 2 (1983-1999) | Part 3 (2000-2006) | Part 4 (2007) | Part 5 (2008) | Part 6 (2009-present)

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes)2000
January 22: Party at Old No. 9 in Waring, Texas (near Boerne.) You know, it never is very busy in January. I want to thank each and every one of you (and that is 300-plus on e-list and 600-plus by postal - in quite a few countries and even continents,) for your support. Without you, I'd really have some explaining to do. A million thanks to the coolest thousand folks on the planet.
February 1: Survived those winter blahs (barely) and now, things start picking up in my life. Hey, a little squeezin' goes right with the Mardi Gras season. As some of you may know, Mardi Gras culminates this year on March 7, signifying not only the end of a two-month party, but ... the beginning of 40 days of fasting and spiritual meditation, let's say. Folks, this is my kind of thinking, as it reflects this pervasive duality, know what I'm sayin'? I hope you do. Let me take just a moment, then, to pay my respects for those who are no longer with us, and to say a prayer for those who are ill. The past year, we lost so many friends; some great artists and some who greatly appreciated art. Whether a rocker, like the irreplaceable Sir Doug, or a roadie, like my great, longtime friend, Bondo, I know they like it when we all remember them. And I, for one, sure do. And to those who are ill, you know that we all hope to see you out again real soon.
March 3 and 4: Maggie Mae's on 6th Street for Mardi Gras Weekend
March 5: San Antonio's Mardi Gras Parade on the San Antonio Riverwalk
March 5: Jovita's Sunday Afternoon Benefit for "House The Homeless" with The Barkers and The Keepers
March 6: The Bar in Midland for the Annual Lundi Gras Party
March 7: Fat Tuesday's in San Antonio with Joe "King" Carrasco
March 11: Fredericksburg Jaycees Annual Crawfish Festival
March 12: Artisan's Festival at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
March 13: Laughing At The Sun Art Gallery
March 18: Under The Sun on South Congress for a South By South Austin Showcase with Chris Gaffney and James Intveld
March 25: Rosedale Ride at Samsung benefiting children with multiple disabilities.

April 1 and 2: Austin's Annual Swamp Romp in Waterloo Park was the best ever. Big thanks to French Smith and Joe Rogers at Roadstar Productions for bringing all those great Louisiana bands here, as well as for having us play between all the main-stage bands, all day on both Saturday and Sunday. We took it as a high compliment, indeed. D'Jalma Garnier and the guys in File were in fine form, as were Steve Riley, Rosie Ledet, Geno Delafose and all the rest.
April 7: Roberts Point Park in Port Aransas for the Annual Sand Sculpture Competition Party and Dance
April 9: The Cabaret Cafe and Dance Hall in Bandera with the great Buckwheat Zydeco
April 15: Waco Custom Meats Annual Crawfish Festival
April 15: LeBoeuf's Bayou Cajun Restaurant in Waco
April 16: The Walk For Safe Families at Waterloo Park
April 25: Downtown Noon Concert at Regent's Plaza, 6th and Colorado
May 7: Pecan Street Festival
May 14: Gruene Hall (Mother's Day)
May 20: Dos Amigos Annual Crawfish Boil in Odessa, Texas
May 21: Spicy Foods and Music Festival in Boerne
May 24: Auditorium Shores
May 27: Cibolo Creek Country Club in San Antonio for their 10th Anniversary Celebration with R.C. Banks and Spencer Jarmon
June 1: Still working on the SQUEEZETONES' new CD. This month, we'll be adding some background harmonies featuring three of the sweetest voices in Texas, the TEXANA DAMES - Charlene, Conni and Traci. As many of you may know, they and their excellent band are featured every Sunday afternoon here in Austin from 3-6pm at Guero's, on South Congress. Also due in the studio for a repeat performance or two, Ed Vizard and R.C. Banks, both well-known for their contributions to "Dig Us On The Road Somewhere". One track, "Baby, You Got It" written by Tony "Macumba" Murillo, also features Don Leady, J.J. Barrera and one of my favorite old  Joe Ely Band mates, the one and only Smoky Joe Miller on baritone sax.
June 3: Today, French Smith over at Roadstar Productions brings in  one of the greatest Louisiana legends, BOOZOO CHAVIS, as well as one of the younger generations' finest  representatives, BLUERUNNERS, and again, has chosen us as one of Austin's welcoming committee, along with PAPA MALI and ZYDECO  RANCH at Waterloo Park, complete with tons of Louisiana cuisine. I am so proud to be associated, again, with the legend,  Mr. BOOZOO CHAVIS. His show is an outstanding example of his unique culture and, let me tell you, he is one of  the most genuinely friendly performers on the festival circuit at this time.
June 10: The Squeezetones' 6th annual appearance at Lockhart's  Chisholm Trail Festival. A big thanks to Russell Seeligson and everybody who waded in the mud with us in Lockhart. I must admit I was afraid the appearance would be cancelled, or, at least, poorly attended. But NO... It was packed and, at the end of our show, we were hired back for next year... on the microphone. I hope no pickup trucks were lost,  but I am sure many pairs of good boots had to be replaced. What a day; I'll never forget it.
June 25: Saengerhalle Music Fest near New Braunfels benefiting United Way featuring Sisters Morales and many more
July 8: Humble Time at the Freiheit General Store near New Braunfels
September 1 and 2: Einstein's in Lubbock, for Buddy's Annual Birthday Party
September 29: Carlsbad Tavern in San Antonio
October 1: Pecan Street Festival on Sixth Street
October 4: Jovita's, 8-10pm, our Wednesday night home for almost 3 years.
October 28: The Arcadia Theater in Kerrville, also featuring Kerrville's own "Part Of The Problem" NOTE: This classic old downtown theater (located on Water Street just East of State Highway 16) was packed with over a hundred costumed partiers. There was a Mexican Fajitas buffet, desserts and anything you wanted to drink, especially Texas wines.
December 1: At this time of joy and confusion, let me suggest that maybe we just can't have one without the other. Tonight, I'll be at Luckenbach, Texas to join others in honoring  singer-songwriter Al Grierson, who drowned in a hill-country flood recently, leaving young children. I hope you'll join us. God bless his family this Christmas.
December 2: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, for a Special Holiday Reunion featuring our long-time drummer, current Colorado resident Justin Hess. 
December 15: Tunes@Noon Concert Series at the TMA Auditorium, 401 West 15th Street
December 23: The Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, Austin Music Hall

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes) 2001
January 1: At this point, 01/01/01, most of us agree that we are in the first day of the first year of a new millennium. And, as always, the only constant is change. For instance, me and the Squeezetones' Wednesday nights at Jovita's are a thing of the past. This has been so much fun; we'll really  miss seeing so many of you at those shows. But, stay tuned; the band and I will be playing all around the area in  coming months. Mardi Gras, our busiest season, starts on Saturday, January 6th and concludes on Fat Tuesday, February  27th. So, I resolve to enjoy the next millennium.
February 16: Stephen F. Austin Hotel, for a Masquerade Ball with Louisiana's own Geno Delafose and also featuring a Special New Orleans Buffet. Benefiting Austin's Pediatric AIDS  Unit.
February 23: The Mardi Gras Parade down Austin's Sixth Street, is, unfortunately, a prelude to a riot, both by and for, the Austin Police Department. Fortunately, I was out of there long before the tear-gas canisters started flying.
February 25: Mardi Gras Parade on San Antonio's Riverwalk
February 26: Doc's in Midland, Texas, for the Lundi Gras Party
March 3: Fiesta Gardens for the C.R.O.P. Walk, and, later... Gruene Hall, opening for Louisiana's Wayne Toups & Zydecajun.
March 17: Texicalli Grill in South Austin for the Annual SXSW Austin Showcase, featuring the Cornell Hurd Band Revue, with Bill Kirchen, Johnny Bush and many more, including yours truly.
March 24: 7th Annual Rosedale Ride
April 1: Waterloo Park for the Doug Sahm Tribute at Spamarama
April 8: Waterloo Park for the Bayou Boogie, with Boozoo Chavis, The Radiators, Geno Delafose and many others.
April 15: Gruene Hall, Easter Sunday
April 21: Waterloo Park, Walk For Safe Place
April 22: Waterloo Park, Earth Day Concert, with Shawn Colvin, Tribal Nation, Joe "King" Carrasco and many others.
April 28 & 29: Waterloo Park, both days, for another Swamp Romp. On  the first day, after a typically high-energy set of his own and, then, after hanging around, obviously enjoying himself, backstage, until the very last performance, Mr. Boozoo Chavis left the Park, scene of so many incredible moments, for the last time. By that night, he was in an Austin hospital, from which he never left, surrounded by family, friends and fans until the very end. His Austin following will never let his name fade away.
May 19: Railroad Blues in Alpine
May 20: Riley's in Midland for their Annual Crazy Cajun Sunday
June 2: Quiet Valley Ranch, Kerrville, Texas for The 30th Anniversary Kerrville Folk Festival
June 9: Lockhart Chisholm Trail Festival, our 7th appearance and it always rocks, rain or shine!
June 17: Gruene Hall, Father's Day

August 1: I've just returned from an amazing journey to the North of Italy, where I was the Special Guest of my good friend, Fabrizio Poggi and his kickazz band, Chicken Mambo. The audiences were great, as was this extremely tight band. Joe, Michele and Maurizio, as well as their leader, Fabrizio, are true, musical veterans. Our new Loud House CD, "FANTASIZE," is receiving good airplay, both in and outside the US. Check out: to hear samples and order "FANTASIZE" direct. From the CD jacket:
Love and thanks to my brother Mike, to Celeste, and to my kids, Rachel, Samara,
Leah and Josh and my grandkids, John, Jessie, Sharee and Janie. Special thanks also
to James & Judy at the Top of Texas, Keith & Colleen, the Wrights, Carol Jean,
Vern Debes, Gef Bruce, Tommy Hancock, Jim Yanaway, Rod Kennedy, Johnny Hughes, Wes McGhee, D'Jalma Garnier, Dutch & Eunice, Pam & Danny, Alana, and my friend... Flaco. Thanks also to Mayo, Brad and all our friends at Jovita's, and, especially, to Joe Petosa and all the Petosa Accordion family.
August 12: Guero's Taco Bar, featuring Conni Hancock on steel
August 17: The Caprock in Post, Texas
August 18: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, Texas, featuring my good friends, Barry Brittain and Winston Hahn and dedicated to the "Sandcastle Culture." Barry, Win and I have played together many times, although usually with our feet in the sand.
September 14: The "FANTASIZE" Official Release Parties: First, the keg beer arrives around 4pm and The Squeezetones perform songs from the new CD at 5 at Waterloo Records. Then, Second, The Pier, a new and very favorite venue of mine, off Bee Cave Road, is where we continue the celebration of the new CD from 7-10pm. This place is on the shores of beautiful Lake Austin.
October 5: Sons Of Hermann Hall in Dallas. A favorite venue, and featuring an opening set by Dallas' SWAMP OPERA. The Squeezetones and I are then joined by some of the guests from the new recording, plus a very special guest, Fabrizio Poggi, leader of Italian roots/folk band, CHICKEN MAMBO. Fabrizio is a singer/songwriter who also plays the button accordion and the blues harmonica.
October 12: Luckenbach Dance Hall, opening for PAT GREEN, in the company of Fabrizio Poggi, again, this time as leader.
October 13: The Double Ox Cantina, Fredericksburg, Texas again featuring Fabrizio and his Texas friends, as well as the Squeezetones and myself.
October 27: Saengerhalle, near New Braunfels, presented by the New Braunfels Museum of Music and Art, and featuring also, Bradley Williams and the Gulf Coast Playboys.
December 1: Happy Winter Holidays to all of you, from me, Ponty Bone. Hmmm..., I wonder who first used the term, "the human condition" in literature? I seem to remember the following line, one I've used all my life, "I'm a keen observer of the human condition." It is, indeed, a strange condition, to say the least. Here we all are, so terribly the center of everything, and yet, not really knowing how this all takes place. Things like waking up every morning, not only still breathing on a perfectly-spinning planet, but remembering the events of the day before. Well, most of us, anyway, most of the time. Anyway, I'm continually amazed at the human condition, aren't you? Not understandable to us humans, yet what separates us, not only from the "animals," but also from God.
December 31: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos for a New Year's Rockin' Eve Party complete with Champagne and Blackeyed Peas.

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes) 2002
January 1: Another New Year. Last month, my newsletter was so, like, introspective, that I decided not to send it. Sorry. But now it's 2002 and, frankly, I feel ...positive. For one thing, Loud House Records just announced that our CD, Fantasize, has been honored by critics both in Austin and overseas: Fantasize was selected as one of the Top 20 Austin Albums of the Year by the Austin American-Statesman. Also, "Now's the Time (Do What You Do Best)," the opening track, was selected by the Netherlands music magazine Heaven, for their list of "Not to Be Missed Songs" of 2001. By the way, ex-Squeezetone and composer of some of our songs, R. C. Banks, was also honored for his new CD, Conway's Corner, also on Loud House. Conway's Corner was selected by the Austin Chronicle as a Top 10 Texas Album of the Year; and it was also the #1 album on Australian critic Eric Black's Top 5 list, which can be viewed on the Rockzillaworld website.
February 8: Speakeasy's for a Masquerade Ball.
February 10: River Parade, Downtown Riverwalk, San Antonio and then, later, Schroeder Hall near Victoria for the South Texas Mardi Gras Gumbo Cook-Off with Roger Creager, Larry Joe Taylor, Gary P Nunn, Houston Marchman, Davin James, Chris Wall, John Evans, Mark Jungers, Chris Holzhaus and Smokey  Wilson.
February 26: The LBJ Student Center Ballroom, Main Campus, S.W.T.S.U. in San Marcos for a "Song Swap" featuring Joe Ely, Ray Benson, Tish Hinojosa, and Ruthie Foster, sponsored by the Institute for the History of Texas Music of the History Department, S.W.T.S.U. We are all so fortunate that the Institute for the History of Texas Music is living up to the challenges of this rich region we live in. They also publish the Journal of Texas Music History, which I highly enjoy.
March 10: Flaco Jimenez's Birthday down in my old home-town of San Antonio at the (new) Farmer's Daughter, 5246 Blanco Rd. about 2 miles inside the NW Loop 410. The proceeds go to the Hill Country Youth Ranch, with whom Flaco works to help kids at risk. The Squeezetones and I kick things off at 5pm, followed by such special guests as David Lee Garza Y Los Musicales, Augie Meyer and many others.
March 15: Texicalli Grill, a Trio featuring Richard Bowden, Jesse Taylor and me.
March 23: Samsung Campus for the Rosedale Ride. The Squeezetones are a regular at this event.
March 30: Double Ox Cantina in Fredericksburg, Texas.
April 6: Camp Ben McCulloch Park for Annual Crawfish Party
April 27: The Viking Festival in Georgetown
April 28: Waterloo Park for the Swamp Romp
May 12: Gruene Hall for Mother's Day
May 18: Giddings, Texas for the Lee County Fair
June 7: Longview, Texas for Alley Fest
June 8: Lockhart for Chisholm Trail Festival, BarBQ Cook-Off
July 13: The French Legation in Austin for Bastille Day Celebration
July 26: Greenville, Texas for the Gary P. Nunn Terlingua North Chili Cook-Off
August 23: Encore CD and Videos for an in-store appearance; also it was a Lubbock reunion with T.J. McFarland and Lewis Cowdrey both on hand at this store owned and operated by old friend Chuck Lokey.
August 30: Kerrville's Quiet Valley Ranch Benefiting the Wine and Music Festival
August 31: Gruene Hall
October 18-25: South Padre Island for the Annual Sandcastle Celebration. What a party!
October 26: Fredericksburg's Wine and Food Festival. A huge success with Johnny Nicholas and His All Stars.
October 31: Halloween Party and Costume Contest at Railroad Blues in Alpine, Texas
November 1: Terlingua, Texas Original World Chili Cook-Off
November 2: Double Ox Cantina in Fredericksburg
November 3: So here it is November and Texas is so beautiful, from the coast to the Big Bend, as I can attest having just returned from both locales. October's Sand Castle Days on South Padre Island continues to be a great get-together, as does November's Original Texas Chili Cook-Off in Terlingua. Of course, planning for next year is already taking place for both events so ask me if you want more info. You know, the times we are living through right now cause me to take absolutely none of this fun for granted. I see how our getting together at these historically important places (and so many others,) for all these years is what we're all about. It's why we work so hard and why we fight so hard all our life. The Gulf of Mexico, the Rio Grande, a hill-country campfire... these are all more than they seem,  casting our dreams at a more-than-life-size scale. For this particular earthling, to be able to continue to go and be one with all these gatherings is one of the great joys a man could have. And, that joy is mine, for which I am constantly thankful.
December 23: Armadillo Christmas Bazaar
December 31: New Year's Eve at San Antonio's Tower Of The Americas. Not only a revolving tower, but the fireworks show made the international news. After so much travel, it provided a fitting ending to the year 2002.

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes) 2003
February 1: It really is more like winter this year, even here in Texas. I'm loving it as much as possible, while eagerly anticipating warmer weather and outdoor venues.
February 6-8: I'm in Nashville for the Folk Alliance Conference with other Loud House artists Troy Campbell and David Olney. It's jammed, day and night, and we're playing everywhere, from hotel rooms to hotel hallways, day and night.
February 23: Mardi Gras Gumbo Fundraiser for Dallas' KNON-FM 89.3 Radio at The Lone Star Oyster Bar on Lake Ray Hubbard. This place was great and we had a real good turn-out for the folks at KNON, one of my real favorite stations and one that I've played live on many times.
March 1: Mardi Gras/Swamp Romp Party of Downtown Austin; on the "Ponty 'BON-TON' Stage" then later that evening, HANOVER'S in Pflugerville opening for Patrice Pike with food by Crawfish Johnny; I must be living right!!!
March 2: San Antonio's Mardi Gras River Parade, along the Downtown Riverwalk.
March 17: Austin's annual South By Southwest Music Conference was, as always, outstanding. We enjoyed the out-of-town and foreign visitors almost as much as the Loud House Records Party and Showcase. I played at gigs and then ran to play at other gigs for several days, and was constantly being reminded how much I love Austin and our local scene. And, speaking of Loud House Records, let me brag a little about our label and our label-mates. For one thing, the positive reviews continue for our CD, "FANTASIZE," including a good one from Lafayette's The Times Of Acadiana. For another, R.C. Banks' CD, "Conway's Corner" received four stars in "Down Beat" magazine! Man! And, David Olney's new Loud House CD, "The Wheel" is kicking up quite a little storm everywhere, as well it should.
June 3: Today, I am in San Antonio (my home town...) First, my personal congratulations to this years mighty San Antonio Spurs on winning the Western Conference Championship and on being headed to the NBA Finals starting tomorrow night against the Eastern Champion New Jersey Nets. I have been a Spurs fan for many years and, as a matter of fact, whenever I go on stage, I try to concentrate on two things: the Mexican accordionists who set the bar all the way to the top for all accordion-players and... the mighty Spurs, who, faced with nightly challenges, rise to the occasion again and again. I always hope to perform as well.
June 4: Waterloo Park for a Free Concert also featuring Rotel and The Hot Tomatoes. I felt, along with everybody else backstage, that we (six pieces with our new guitarist, Gabe Rhodes, "Marvelous" Mike Gersmann on drums and "Wonderful" Wash Hamilton on bass, augmented by Danny Roy Young on rub-board and Booka Michel on percussion) turned in a super-hot show.
June 7: Today, I'm off to my annual "fishing trip" which this year takes us to Lake Medina, one of Texas' cleanest lakes. Good eating ahead.
June 8: This year's Kerrville Folk Festival is a very special one and as big and wonderful as Texas. Beginning on May 22nd and concluding (with your favorite accordion-player who has a band called The Squeezetones...) on June 8th, this festival is the 32nd annual.
June 14: The Chisholm Trail Festival in Lockhart City Park
June 27: The VFW Hall in Marble Falls
June 28th: KBUC Radio Party in Jourdanton City Park
July 1: I think I'd have to be pretty stupid to talk politics and risk losing even one fan of my music because of my stance on various issues. Of course, I have to weigh this against my actual beliefs possibly being important, or even possibly bringing one person around to an improved way of thinking. So, having said all that, my wish on this holiday is just that we all call it Independence Day rather than the 4th of July, because I think it matters what we're celebrating and it isn't just about firecrackers. It is explained to us in school that we are celebrating America's Declaration Of Independence, so... Independence is good. Independence is celebrated by our country and therefore it is to be desired. We value our Independence. In other words, if you or I are independent, that is the stuff America is supposed to love and be all about. There, I said it; anybody mad?
July 4: Happy Independence Day, everyone.
July 5th: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels. I can't remember a Gruene Hall gig that wasn't a good day for me.
July 26: Dan Electro's Bar in Houston
August 2: Casbeers in San Antonio. Hey, how about my favorite NBA team, the San Antonio Spurs? If you don't know, we are now the 2003 World Champions! I congratulate the entire team on this huge accomplishment, representing sustained excellence. I toast them more than once during my San Antonio show, at the wonderful venue, Casbeers. You Spurs fans come see me; let's party!
August 24: Edmonton's Labatt Blues Festival in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Folks, it doesn't get much better than this. I just can't say enough about how enjoyable this festival was. John Hammond closed it out with a great electric band; Magic Slim & The Teardrops ruled; and Duke Robillard and his Band with special guest, Ruth Brown were particularly magical. Also a pleasure to hear were Paul Reddick and his band, The Sidemen, and Omar & The Howlers; they were all absolutely great. Missed Sue Foley, as well as my old friend Tom Rigney, but was told they had great sets. My band was expanded to 6 pieces, including Danny Roy Young and Booka Michel, for this special performance and, I must say, we rocked. The weather was beautiful and the crowds were large and very appreciative. Many thanks to Cam Hayden, Carrol Deen and all their wonderful volunteers for a special experience. And those Canadians are so sensible!
August 31: The Buddy Holly Festival in Lubbock, Texas. This is an all-day event with 2 stages and 18 bands, and it is Lubbock's annual salute to native son Buddy Holly. It is also a reunion of quite a few of Texas' best singer/songwriters. I loved Shelley King and her band, as well as Stacey Earle, Patricia Vonne and, especially... The Texana Dames, Lubbock's finest musical representatives. They mix country and soul so well.
September 6: The Lone Star Music Hall in Seguin. Our first time in this dancehall, previously known as Lozano's Ballroom. We do all the Cajun dance tunes for a good-sized crowd and a little Tex-Mex, tambien.
September 14: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels
September 19: The Hill Country Opry in Kerrvlle. This is a superb, new venue.
October 2: The New Braunfels Museum of Art and Music in Gruene. A grand dinner plus the chance to witness the recording of a Live CD (to be available online at of Texas Songwriters, while helping out both The New Braunfels Museum of Art and Music and, a good friend and supporter, long-time Texas songwriter and club owner, Mr. Kent Finlay. All performances are solo/acoustic, including Susan Gibson, Willis Alan Ramsey, Van Wilks and many, many more.
October 3: The Cove in San Antonio
October 10: MacHenry's Upstairs in Fort Worth
October 11: Tommy Alverson's Texas Music Family Gathering in Glen Rose. You can find out more about this annual event at We had a blast and hope to get back there next year.
October 18: Sandcastle Sculptor Party on South Padre Island. This is more an annual party than a gig, and, although it does not feature my incredible band, The Squeezetones, it is, as in past years, a major jam session! This year, my friend, master button-accordionist Joel Guzman and I are joined by Barry Brittain, Win Hahn and a few of our other sand-sculptor friends.
October 31: Blaine's Pub in San Angelo
November 1: The Original Texas Chili Cook-Off in Terlingua
November 23: Tonight finds me in Kerrville, for an event both sad and joyful. It is a celebration of the life of Cindy Terry, a musician and friend who was taken from us in a car accident, just a few weeks ago. It is at Kerrville's Y.O. Ranch Hotel Ballroom featuring lots of her friends for lots of music. After several hours, I decide to start driving back to Austin, finding out later that Monte Montgomery called me up to join him right after I left! I'll never slip out early again. And, maybe, we might reflect on how quick we can be taken from all we know and from all we planned to be doing.
December 14: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels
December 24: The Annual Armadillo Christmas Bazaar
December 27: The Hill Country Opry in Kerrvlle
December 31: Kent Finlay's Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos for this New Year's Eve, as we ring in the new and ring out the old. This past year has been great, traveling and playing, and we look forward to lots more of the same. A special thanks to my wonderful children (Rachel, Samara, Leah and Josh) and my grand-children (John, Jessie, Sharee and Janie) for their continued love and support through these many years. I love them all.

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes) 2004
February 13th: A Benefit for R.C. Banks at The Triple Crown in San Marcos. It is windy and cold but there is a big crowd on hand and a good time is had by all. Originally from Lubbock, R.C. (or Randy) was the Squeezetones' second guitarist, (following John X. Reed,) and was with the band for over six years, making many tours with us. He also wrote all or part of several of our staples, like "Galveston Island" and "Frio City Road". A true Texas treasure.
February 20th: The Hill Country Opry in Kerrville, for a very special Mardi Gras celebration with outdoor, Louisiana-meets-Texas, cooking. By the way, this is certainly the newest and most-talked-about venue in the hill country. The acoustics here are "trembly" good.
February 22nd: Nate's Seafood in Dallas featuring yours truly as a special guest of The James Hinkle Mardi Gras Revue. James is an old Fort Worth friend who I first met while he played guitar for Marcia Ball.
February 24th: Billy Bob's in Fort Worth, Texas for Fat Tuesday, again with The James Hinkle Revue.      
February 29th: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos for a Leap Year, Sadie Hawkins Day Party and Dance.
March 2: Today, as many of you know, is Texas Independence Day and I wonder... is there anyone else out there who, like me, disdains the Post Office's two-letter "abbreviation" and instead, spells out the names of the states? I'm proud to be a Texan and I don't mind taking the time to spell it out. And if I'm mailing a letter to Tennessee, I'll spell that out, too. States seem too important to me to just call them TX or TN. I like to remember the important stuff.
March 5: Dan Electro's Guitar Bar in Houston, where we ruled; I've loved this place since I first started playing here in the '80s.
March 12: Loud House Records hosts a CD Release Party for my friend (and ex-Joe Ely Band-mate) Mike Kindred at Sullivan's Ringside. Mike, (who also played with Krackerjack and Stevie Ray Vaughan, among others and, who wrote "Cold Shot") is my own, personal, favorite piano-player and this new CD, "Handstand", is burnin' hot.
March 20: Well, it's that time again... SXSW in Austin, the musical portion of which is from the 17th through the 21st. As in each and every year, we look forward to seeing lots of friends from around the country and, in fact, from around the world, during this great time of independent music and so much more. Our friends at Loud House Records once again host a showcase of their artists, this year at Jovita's and, this year not requiring a SXSW wristband or badge, i.e. this is an "unofficial" showcase. I am so proud to be signed to this young label, owned by my old friends Booka and Edythe Michel, who have also released excellent CDs by Troy Campbell, David Olney, R.C. Banks and the aforementioned Mike Kindred.
March 27: The Rosedale Ride, an event we have been associated with for several years, supports the Rosedale School for kids with special needs. I have also been to the school to play and this is one incredible group, as can be seen by the turnout each year for this bicycle ride around the campus of Samsung Austin.
March 28: I wonder how many times I have played Texas' oldest (and my favorite) dancehall over these past years? Anyway, today I'm back at Gruene Hall for another one and I can hardly wait. Do I enjoy my work? You bet. I always enjoy my Sunday afternoons at this dancehall, but this one is extra special! The crowd is huge, plus my darlin' girl Celeste is there along with her parents, who are from the Big Thicket part of East Texas, just north of Beaumont-Port Arthur. It is great having them there, as, I figure they must be experts on my kind of music.
April 9: Harper (less than 20 miles west of Fredericksburg) at Beaux Hickey's Pavillion.
April 23: I am in Waring, near Comfort, this time backed by the 'Waring Sympathy Orkestra' at the Comfort Little Theatre. Fun.
April 24: The Squeezetones and I are at Austin's Waterloo Park for another of our long-standing, regular events, the Walk For Safe Place. The band, consisting of Mike Gersmann on drums, Wash Hamilton on bass and new guitar-player Rich Segura, are becoming just awesome. On certain shows, we may also add Spencer Jarmon (our previous guitar-player for almost ten years,) or Danny Roy Young (from the Cornell Hurd Band) on rub board, or both. Anyway, it is becoming a perfect realization of the ideal sound which I have dreamed of!
May 14: Ford Park Pavillion in Beaumont. Pat Green is the headliner; however, we are playing prior to the concert for the promoter's party-tent crowd.
May 28: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas' Deep Ellum District, a place where I always feel at home, feels especially comfortable tonight. It is the debut of a new side-project, The Experimystics, consisting of James Hinkle on guitars and vocals, Johnny Mack on rub board and vocals, Stony Bass on bass and yours truly on accordion and vocals. We enjoy a great rapport and look forward to more and more gigs for this group. Our name again? The Experimystics.
June 4: Corpus Christi, on a beautiful Friday afternoon, in the Courtyard, at the Water Street Market's Music & Art Fest. It is Surf Club Records' Happy Hour, as well as the Inauguration of The South Texas Music Walk Of Fame. Viva Selena and Viva Freddy Fender.
June 6: Gruene Hall with the Squeezetones plus Spencer Jarmon
June 8: All four of us play a brief set for the Central Texas Accordion Association's Free4All. There are lots of accordion players and groups, all very good, at this annual event. And, as you should know, accordions... RULE!!!
June 11: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos
June 12: The Chisholm Trail Festival in Lockhart, the Squeezetones' Tenth Year!
June 17: The Executive Surf Club in Corpus Christi with the Squeezetones plus Spencer Jarmon
June 18: The Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls. This new venue is a wonderful, outdoors experience for you Hill-Country fans, featuring fine food, your favorite beverages and a stage built under an ancient oak tree. Good crowd.
June 25: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas with the Experimystics
July 5: Today finds me flying to Italy for a tour with my good friend Fabrizio Poggi and his band, Chicken Mambo, featuring me as their 'special-guest'. I must tell you that the Italian people seem to appreciate my style of accordion playing like no others I've met. And Fabrizio and his wife, Angelina, are world-class hosts.

July 6: Rehearsal. The members of the band are all pros and, in addition to Fabrizio, include Maurizio (aka Micio) Fassino on guitar, Roberto Re (aka "Bob King") on bass and Stefano Bertolotti on drums. Owww! We sound good.   
July 7: Gorizia, Italy for the FOLKFEST INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL. This annual festival is held in a variety of locations in the Eastern part of Northern Italy. This year, besides Ponty Bone and Chicken Mambo, it features Steve Winwood, John Mayall, Robben Ford and John Trudell. 
July 8: Barbeano, Italy (Spilimbergo) for FOLKEST
July 10: This gig, also for FOLKEST, in Santo Stefano Udinese, Italy turns into a rained-out event, thanks to the crew electing to use the outdoor space, despite the availability of an alternative indoor space and, despite the completely obvious likelihood of rain.         
July 16: The STORYVILLE Club near Bedizzole, Italy is operated by three Texas women who remind Celeste and I that we are indeed, a long way from home.         
July 17: Oggiono, Italy on the grounds of the beautiful Villa Caccua Dominioni. Words can't describe this location and our group are treated like visiting royalty. Truly a night to remember.
July 18: Time off and Celeste and I are off to Riomaggiore, Italy for three nights in our own, third-floor, apartment with a balcony overlooking the Ligurian Sea. Riomaggiore, as many of you may know, is part of the five towns comprising the Cinque Terre, all accessible only by train, boat or foot. Traveling light for this, we have only small backpacks instead of accordions. Sweet.
July 21: Voghera, Italy in the Giardino dei Cachi. This is the "home-town" of Chicken Mambo and the show is extremely special, including Fabrizio and I just sitting on the steps of the stage exchanging accordion solos during one song.
July 22: Lecco, Italy in the Osteria Casa Di Lucia. Tonight is a special birthday party at the home of Lucia, the heroine of Manzoni's Italian classic, "The Betrothed." On the way there, we stop downtown by Lake Lecco for a gelato and a walk around.
July 23: Today finds your traveling squeezebox man revisiting a friend I met while in Italy in 2001, master accordion builder Claudio Beltrami. This very cordial and jovial man, along with his wife, Ivana, are making beautiful instruments with equally beautiful tone in their bright, new Beltrami Accordions shop in the City of Stradella, Italy, known for it's rich accordion history. (They have a banner across a street there which reads: "Stradella - il pane - il vino - la fisarmonica" which of course means "the bread - the wine - the accordion" which is so cool.) This time, I have to have one of these fine, hand-made, instruments for my own and I name her "Luigina" after Angelina's mother, who was so very special. The places I have played this past month all know the accordion well; it is seen and heard in all types of European music, whether traditional or contemporary. And, of course, many of the true masters of the instrument are active all over Europe, leaving me feeling positively invigorated. Tomorrow, we rent a big van and head for France!!! 
July 25: The tour concludes with the prestigeous, three-day, Country Rendez-Vous Festival in Craponne sur Arzon, France. Here, I'm the band-leader with Fabrizio and his band backing me. Some 20-thousand fans are here for acts like (and this is just a very few...) Wayne Hancock, Kevin Fowler, Jason Boland and The Stragglers, Cross Canadian Ragweed, Reckless Kelly, Marty Stuart and Billy Joe Shaver. Man, this is certainly a career high-point for me, as we go on following the brilliant Billy Joe. Chicken Mambo does such an admirable job as the European version of my band that we take the most encores of any act at the festival.
July 29: Back in Texas, and it sure feels good to be home again.
August 6: Hondo's On Main in Fredericksburg
August 7: The Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls
August 29: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos
September 4: Hondo's On Main in Fredericksburg
September 5: Gruene Hall
October 8: The Saxon Pub, followed by multi-talent Guy Forsyth. My birthday eve on a Friday night on S. Lamar. Owww...!!!
October 9: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos. The Squeezetones and myself rock this (birthday!) Saturday night till closing time. And another half-decade goes into the history books.
October 17: The 4th Annual International Accordion Festival in downtown San Antonio's La Villita. The bands are all of the highest caliber, driving many in the huge crowds to dance. The members of my band and I enjoy two of the best audience responses we've ever had.
October 22: Sons Of Hermann Hall in Dallas, one of Dallas' finest all wood, high-ceiling dance clubs. Opening is, from KNON's Monday night Zydeco show, DJ Tee Reeshard and his fine, new band, The ComeAlongs.   
October 23: The Fredericksburg Wine and Food Festival in downtown Fredericksburg. These folks always put on a great festival with lots of food, great Texas music and Texas wine. This year is no exception.
October 24: Guero's on a Sunday afternoon outside in the Beer Garden. Unfortunately, rain stops the party a little early but we will be back.
October 29: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas with the Experimystics
November 7: Gruene Hall
November 13: Fischer Hall, close to Wimberley, for the First Annual Rice Festival, with Tim O'Brien, Susan Gibson, Cary Swinney and more. Hint to fans: watch for a CD to be produced from this concert; it should be a great one.
November 19: Evangeline Cafe in Austin, Oh yeah, this is a cool little place with excellent food, super hospitality and, again, we'll be back.
November 20: The Ole Moulton Bank in Moulton. This place is awesome, as is their schedule of artists lined up for coming months. Owned and operated by our friends from Dan Electro's, this venue also features a music store, many vintage guitars and two, walk-in, vaults. I guess these vaults once held some big money for the farmers and ranchers around Moulton! 
November 26: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas with the Experimystics
December 11: The Executive Surf Club in Corpus Christ, a special, no cover charge, show for our area fans. Mike Gersmann, our drummer, and Rich Segura, our guitarist, are both from this beautiful city by the Gulf of Mexico. And, as we did last time, we also have with us 10-year veteran Squeezetone guitar ace (and Corpus Christi guy...) Spencer Jarmon. Killer night.
December 17: Evangeline Cafe in Austin
December 23: The Armadillo Christmas Bazaar at The Austin Music Hall. This annual event gets better every year!
December 31: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos. Yes, this New Year's Eve finds us back at our favorite honky-tonk. At midnight, we count down the final seconds of 2004, then toast in the New Year with champagne and Kent's famous black-eyed peas, guaranteed to bring you good luck! This past year stands as absolute proof of this statement. I have so many friends in this business, especially Mike, Wash and Rich (The Squeezetones); Booka, Danny and Spencer (part-time Squeezetones); James, Johnny and Stoney (The Experimystics); and Fabrizio, Micio, Roberto and Stefano (Chicken Mambo). A big thanks to all of them, to all of our families and friends and to everyone who supported us in 2004. Being a musician is, truly, a gift from God. Big Thanks.

 Pepper.gif (2601 bytes)2005
January 14: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels. As always, a great time with a great crowd of Texas-music lovers.
January 21: Dan's Silverleaf in Denton. The Experimystics rock hard and are well-received. Among those in the house are my friend Carl Finch of Denton's multi-Grammy Award winners "Brave Combo". Keyboard Magazine, in a rare story on accordion players, once wrote that "If you think the accordion is just a novelty, don't tell Texans Carl Finch or Ponty Bone..." or something like that. Seriously, I do recommend you see "Brave Combo" anytime you get a chance. As one who has heard them many times, they are truly awesome, a mixture of rock, jazz and... polka.
January 22: Inn Of The Hills in Kerrville. Rod Kennedy's 75th Birthday Gala features yours truly "in-the-round" with Peter Yarrow and many more, after which I race over to the new Hill Country Opry & Grill and am asked to join on-stage one of my very favorites, Shelley King. As we are about to begin another encore, Shelley's sister puts a note on the stage, which reads: "Stop the music now! Your baby is crying in the Green Room and nothing I can do will pacify him." Clark, whose father is the band's drummer, Perry, is literally growing up on the road.
January 28: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas. The Redneck Happy Hour with our group, "The Experimystics."
January 29: Washington's Birthday Celebration in Laredo. A last-minute booking acquired through, (and featuring, on bass,) my old band-mate from "Zydeco Loco," J.J. Barrera. It did rain some, but, we still noticed a big crowd. We'll be back next year, I hope.
February 5: Hill Country Opry & Grill in Kerrville. "The Squeezetones" (Mike, Wash, Rich and I) are joined by backing vocalists, "The Texana Dames," as well as R.C. Banks on guitar and keyboards, and Ed "Marcel" Vizard on saxes, for this very special Mardi Gras show. The Opry is a huge, delightful room with good acoustics, sound and sightlines; as well as gourmet cuisine.
February 6: Nate's Seafood in Addison. This is the second year for me to join James Hinkle for Nate's huge, annual Sunday Gras party.
February 8: The Stagecoach Ballroom in Fort Worth. This special Mardi Gras show is the 13th Annual Krewe of Kowtown Costume Ball. My band, the Squeezetones, and I are on a bill with the great Ray Sharpe, Holland K. Smith, Hash Brown and others and headlined by James Hinkle, celebrating his new CD release by giving a copy to each paying guest.
February 11: Ole Moulton Bank in Moulton. I love this room, once a bank, now a bar. As a matter of fact, I like that about it, too.
February 25: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas. Again, Redneck Happy Hour with "The Experimystics." I must confess, I am one happy guy, whether leading my long-time band, "The Squeezetones," or in a different groove with "The Experimystics", both bands are definitely worth hearing.
March 3: Art on Fifth Avenue in Fort Worth with Slim Richey's band, "The Backporch Vipers." My friend, and fellow-accordion player, Chip Dolan is not there and I get (try) to take his place.
March 18: Guero's Taco Bar for the LoudHouse Showcase. Yes, it's SXSW time again in Austin. Also turning in great sets were LoudHouse label-mates R.C. Banks, Mike Kindred, David Olney and Paul Metsa.
March 19: Travis County Fair Grounds for the BarBQ Cook-Off.
March 25: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas with "The Experimystics."
April 2: Samsung Austin for the Rosedale Ride. This is always fun, a good course to ride for an extremely good cause, the Rosedale School. According to my records, this is their 11th Annual and, it is our 7th time to play here.
April 2: Camp Ben McCulloch Park for an annual Crawfish Party/Dance andfireworks show. I don't know how many years they have been doing this, since it had been going on a few years before I played my first time. I am happy to report, however, that, since that first time, I have been the go-to guy for them ever since. Several years.
April 8: Gruene Hall in New Braunfels. Wayne Toups, with his band, "Zydecajun," is back in my favorite dancehall tonight, and... I get to open the show. Oww...!!!
April 16: Waterloo Park in Austin for the annual Safe Place Walk. This is another long-standing Austin tradition and is definitely lots more than just walking.
April 16: Manchaca Fire Hall for the Fire Ball Crawfish Boil. There is a Poker Run at 10am and an auction, all benefiting the Shrine Children's Hospital. Many fine, customized motorcycles are parked out front and it's almost like an episode of Orange County Choppers, except without all the bickering.
April 20: Scholz' Beer Garden in Austin. The great (and aforementioned,) "Brave Combo" headline this special KGSR event.
April 23: Moonriver Bar & Grill west of Austin for a Crawfish Boil and Music Festival with four bands. This great place, an old schoolhouse with a dance floor and a large beer-garden, is located on FM 2322, near the entrance to Paleface Park.
April 24: Sunset Station in San Antonio This is a fundraiser for the San Antonio Blues Society with accordionist "Cedryl Ballou and the Zydeco Trendsetters" and with San Antonio's own favorites, "Ear Food," featuring Miss Neesie. Sunset Station is a wonderful place to have a dance party.
April 30: Art on Fifth Avenue in Fort Worth. This Art, Blues and BarBQ event is a Wang-Dang Doodle! Produced by my friend, James Hinkle, it features Sumter Bruton, Joe Jonas, Ray Reed, J. B. Wynn, The Kurt South Band and The Experimystics. Plus.., there is plenty of Fort Worth-style BarBQ and all the trimmings. This party is a fund-raiser for the Southwest Blues Heritage Foundation.
May 5: Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls.
May 6: Hill Country Opry & Grill in Kerrville. The newspaper says: "Prohibition Is Over at the Hill Country Opry and Grill" If you come to this new venue's Open House, they will pick up your ticket price for you. That's right, the coolest place we play and it's free on the night of my show! Their bar is, finally, open and their food is definitely worth the drive from either San Antonio or Austin.
May 7: Amvets Hall in Lampasas. This is the Squeezetones' first appearance in Lampasas.
May 13: The Evangeline Cafe in Austin. Lake Charles cooking, then music. They are booking some of the most interesting entertainment in Austin.
May 21: Poor David's Pub in Dallas. This gig is with "Los Super Vatos," featuring Bubba Hernandez from Denton's "Brave Combo" and David De La Garza from Houston's "La Mafia," (both Grammy-winners,) one hot and rocking, new band. We're calling it 'Cumbia meets Zydeco' or something like that. Poor David's is in a new location, and it is really cool. Same wonderful vibe, same good people, just newer and nicer.
May 28: The Fredericksburg Crawfish Festival This hugely popular festival is open Friday, from 6pm till midnight & Saturday, from 11am till midnight, with "The Squeezetones" playing at 9:30pm on Saturday night. Unfortunately, we are rained out, but only after we get them all up and dancing on our first set. That's life. I hope everyone enjoys this Memorial Day week-end and that we remember to stop and honor the dead, as the holiday reminds us to do each year. While I'm at it, I pray that all young people are allowed to mature enough to realize the joy of being allowed to mature enough... Ask me what I mean, if necessary.
June 2: Cole Park in Corpus Christi for the Bay Jam. We are fortunate to all have family and friends show up and, well, it's all over too soon for me. And... what a view.
June 4: Surf Club Records in Corpus Christi for the dedication of several new stars in the South Texas Music Walk Of Fame.
June 10: Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls.
June 11: Toenail Trail Days in Christoval, south of San Angelo.
June 19: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels.
July 1: Colorado River Front Park in Wharton for the Wharton County Freedom Fest and BBQ Cook-Off.
July 2: Ole Moulton Bank in Moulton.
July 3: Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls for an Independence Day Celebration.
July 5: Saxon Pub in Austin with "Spurlock" featuring Mike Gersmann, drums; Brad Fordham, bass; Spencer Jarmon, guitar; Tommy Spurlock on guitar and steel guitar; and on keyboards, the great Garth Hudson of "The Band." I am among this band's guests and do a few songs. Some of the other memorable guests are Stuart Gersmann, the drummer's son, who is a very good, young singer; Elana Fremerton, the fiddler and singer from "The Hot Club of Cowtown" and the Bob Dylan band; Cindy Cashdollar on steel guitar and vocals; and the inestimable Stephen Bruton on vocals and guitar. What a show, and all of it stamped indelibly by Garth's presence and his playing. He is such a gifted musician, capable of supporting any of the singers with his piano and/or organ skills, or, of becoming the show, as in some of his far-ranging solos on both instruments.
July 9: Sorge's Italian Restaurant in Temple. A really excellent restaurant with an admirable live entertainment policy.
July 15: Shady Oak BarBQ in Arlington with James Hinkle, Johnny Mack , Holland K. Smith and Lee Allen.
July 16: Bert and Ernie's on Hamilton Pool Road at RR 12 for an all-day benefit for a fellow-musician, John Gravagno. Also there are many others, including Ray Cashman, the Red, White and Blues Band and, then, closing out the night, the Wild Woodies with John himself on bass.
July 17: Hill Country Opry and Grill in Kerrville for a benefit, with performances by Kinky Friedman, Billy Joe Shaver, myself and others, a silent auction and much more.
July 24: Keys Lounge in Fort Worth for a Tribute and Remembrance of the life of our good friend, Stoney Bass, who died after a brief illness on the 4th of July. Stoney, as some of you remember, was the bass-player for "The Experimystics", among his many accomplishments, and, today, July 24th, would have been his birthday. Many musician/friends play. James Hinkle, Johnny Mack and myself of the Experimystics do a set. For those unfortunate not to have known Stoney very well, his spirit has been seen around every time we've gathered since his passing. For instance, he totally messed up our first practice, then caused our first gig together, after his departure, to be one of our best. One didn't have to talk to him but for just a minute or two to realize he was one of the special people.
July 29: Old Oak Ice House in Marble Falls.
July 30: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos.
August 16: Club Jaguar in Fort Worth with the "Phantom Blues Rockers", which is James Hinkle, Gonzy Trevino, Homer Henderson and yours truly. What - a - blast! Thanks to everyone at the Jaguar for reminding us all that some things never change because... they aren't supposed to. So many great musicians are still out seven nights a week in Fort Worth, supporting each other, for one thing, plus often sitting in with the band and just giving it all.
You know, this may have been the main appeal of this musical lifestyle to my old pals like T.J. "Tiny" MacFarland, who is on my mind and in my prayers. I first met T.J. in Lubbock around 1965. I think he loved the spirit of his musical elders and knew that he was an apprentice to a trade that included it's own functional family, always positive and supportive. He has always been that way to me, his accordion playing friend. He is a major reason why I am a musician.
August 19: Tonight, I am at Dallas' Sons of Hermann Hall in Deep Ellum to see Augie Meyer, Flaco Jimenez and Shaun Sahm. Another favorite group, "Boys Named Sue," are opening and they have the crowd primed. Flaco and I share a good visit downstairs, while the tension builds. Finally, Shaun comes on with his Tex-Mex band. He is so much like his Dad; they literally tear into their set for awhile before bringing out the big guns, Augie and Flaco, who then really proceed to channel the Legend, Doug Sahm, through many "Sir Douglas Quintet" and "Texas Tornado" hits.
August 20: Bucks on the Brazos in Rainbow, Texas for Terry Rasor's 10th Annual Raz on the Braz with "The Experimystics".
August 27: Shady Oak BarBQ in Keller with "The Experimystics".
August 29: Hurrican Katrina hits New Orleans, beginning weeks and months of much sadness. It is called the worst natural disaster in the nation's history and many of the hurricane survivors head to Texas.
September 8: Sweet Home Music Festival in Sweet Home, Texas
September 10: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos
September 17: Sorges Italian Restaurant in Temple.
September 25: Graham Central Station in San Antonio. Flaco Jimenez, Augie Meyers and the City of San Antonio host a huge fund-raiser to help Hurricane Katrina evacuees. Beginning with an introduction by native Texan Tommy Lee Jones at 1pm, Mingo Saldivar, Las Campanas de Americas, Texas Tornados and many, many more, including yours truly and The Squeezetones do what we do best.
October 7: Tres Rios Ranch near Glen Rose for Tommy Alverson's Family Gathering. This is the last show for 'The Experimystics.'
October 8: Gruene Hall near New Braunfels. Ask anyone who was there... Mike, Wash, Rich and I submit this Gruene Hall appearance as evidence that we are sounding better than ever and enjoying playing together more than ever.
October 9: Today is the birthday of both yours truly and my grand-son, John Scott, Jr., who turns 18. He is the oldest of my 4 grand-children, the rest of whom (Jessie, Janie and Sharee) are also very special. I like his chances of being happy, not only because he and I share a (Libra) birthday, but because he faces life so positively.
October 22: Brazos Bash in Navasota at the Grimes County Expo Center.
November 12: 2nd Annual Rice Harrington Festival at Fischer Hall in Fischer, Texas.
November 26: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos
December 16: Ole Moulton Bank in Moulton
December 23: Armadillo Christmas Bazaar at The Austin Music Hall. As usual, this was one of our best shows of the year. Thanks to Bruce, Nancy and to all the vendors for another very special time.
December 30: Guero's Taco Bar on South Congress. A beautiful, warm night and a good crowd, enjoy some South Austin flavor.

December 31: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, for NEW YEARS EVE. It is a Saturday Night and we're joined by extra-special musical guests like Barry Brittain, Winston Hahn, Richard Bowden and the lovely Miss Pam. Kent's black-eyed peas are served at midnight, along with champagne for all. Thanks, really, to all of y'all, my friends, for another great year. And, especially, thanks to my woman, kids and grandkids for another year of love. Peace be with you all.

Pepper.gif (2601 bytes)2006
January 1: As many of you know, I am now spending much of my time in Dallas and Fort Worth, and enjoying playing with many new, and old, musician friends. As a matter of fact, I was recently ruminating over the many musicians I've been in bands with (over a career of almost four decades) and, I suddenly realized - there isn't a lazy or an ignorant one in the bunch. (Am I wrong to be suspicious of lazy or ignorant people? Maybe...) Anyway, looks like it'll be a fun year.
January 6: The Evangeline Cafe
January 22: Gruene Hall
January 23: KC's BarBQ in Dallas at 3317 Malcolm X with The Phantom Blues Rockers, which includes both James Hinkle and Homer Henderson
January 27: Alice's Restaurant in Niederwald
January 28: Washington's Birthday Celebration in Laredo
February 4: Blue Bird Lounge in Fort Worth, with the James Hinkle Band. BarBQ by the leader of the band. Owww...!!!
February 11: The San Antonio Rodeo in the Gruene Hall Tent
February 24: Melody Mountain Ranch in Stephenville for the Ragin' Cajun Dance and Dinner, put on by the Cross-Timbers Fine Arts Council. I play this with metroplex guys filling in for my Austin guys. The good news is that they continue to love us and keep us part of their party each year.
February 26: Nate's Seafood in Addison, with the James Hinkle Band, for the Annual Sunday Gras Party. Oh, yeah, gumbo and Abita beer are in order for today.
February 28: Longhorn Saloon in Ft. Worth, with the James Hinkle Band, for the 14th Annual Krewe Of Kowtown Mardi Gras Party. This party is just getting it's second wind by midnight and, when it finally winds down later, after many hours of excess, Celeste and I are glad all we have to do is walk about a block to our hotel room.
March 3: Fort Worth's Museum of Modern Art. I am playing in a trio format with James Hinkle and Greg Jackson on dobro, in conjunction with the screening of the Townes Van Zandt documentary, "Be Here To Love Me". Lots of good folks over in Fort Worth come out to this special evening, when the lobby of this beautiful museum is converted into a bar.
March 4: Bert 'n Ernies on Hamilton Pool Road. The Squeezetones and I are helping my buddy Juan out at Bert 'n Ernies raise some money for one of our less fortunate musician/friends. Larry Lange's Lonely Knights also play and the reviews I've heard on this band have not been exagerrated.
March 10: Dallas' Lota's Goat on Gaston Avenue. The Phantom Blues Rockers, which is James Hinkle, Homer Henderson, Gunzy Trevino and myself, play. This is the same band that recently made lots of new fans at Fort Worth's Club Jaguar and at a birthday party at Dallas' K.C.'s BarBQ.
March 11: Funeral and Burial of Jesse "Guitar" Taylor in Lubbock. If you are reading this, and didn't know this man, please do an internet search and see what you find. I first met him in the early 60's and we were on the road from 1976 till 1983. However, we were in many bands and jams together from the first till the last. Here's a picture of he and I at Threadgill's, taken on April 24th, 2005.
March 19: Guero's Taco Bar in South Austin. We are a part of their special SXSW Squeezebox Sunday Showcase. And we totally rocked! I don't know whether it was the crowd or what it was, but... something happened and we reached another level of the stratosphere. For instance, every ending was different and special.
March 24: Bergstrom Airport in Austin. Only for ticketed flyers...
March 25: The Rosedale Ride in Austin.
March 25: Alice's Restaurant in Niederwald. Cool venue with excellent food.
April 1: Annual Crawfish Party at Camp Ben McCulloch Park. What a good time, year in and year out. When we roll up, Charles Thibodeaux is playing and, in his band are Steve Doerr and Erik Hokkanen. Folks, it don't get much better than this. Whooee! After some re-meet and greet, we go onstage play until time for the fireworks show put on every year at this shindig. As usual, it is massive and cool, after which we play another set and everybody is dancing. See y'all next year; can't remember when the first one was and don't want to try.
April 9: Keys Lounge in Fort Worth. I am the special guest at the, regular, Sunday night jam, always well-attended, at the Keys. Gunzy Trevino on drums and Mace Maben on guitar.
April 14: The Evangeline Cafe in Austin
April 21: Guero's Taco Bar. It's their biggest night yet, they said, and we'd sure like to keep attracting y'all, as we are starting a series of monthly appearances there.
April 22: Waterloo Park Walk For SafePlace
April 28: Sambet's Cajun Deli. Our first time here and... it's a real good time with a real good crowd. Who knew there were that many people that far out Highway 183?
April 29: Moonriver Bar and Grill. This is a beautiful old place, out on Lake Travis near the entrance to Paleface Park, which used to be an early school for area youngsters. The outdoor beer garden is as beautiful as can be. Patsy Thompson, one of my favorite singers, is also on the bill.
May 12: Graduation, from Texas A & M, of my youngest daughter, Leah. Believe me, my (Aggie) Dad, Ponty, Sr., would sure be proud of her.
May 19: Guero's Taco Bar
May 20: Bert and Ernies. I've always liked this place and this will be a Big Retirement Celebration for the owner and his wife, Juan and Dora, who are real good people.
May 27: Fredericksburg Crawfish Festival. Held downtown, it is, as always, a feast and a good party, with lots of good bands, too.
May 29: Texicalli Grill for Danny Roy Young's 60th Birthday Party. It is also the start of a one-year sabbatical for the boy. Big crowd and lots of good music, too.
June 4: Gruene Hall. OK, so what if Gruene Hall is hot? The beer is just the right temperature.
June 6: Central Texas Accordion Association Free 4 All. This is an event which has been going on for quite a few years and features any and every accordion-player in the Austin area, playing around three songs of their choice. It always provides an interesting cross-section of styles.
June 10: Chisholm Trail Festival in Lockhart
June 10: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos. We always sound great in this club. Oww...!
June 25: Gators in Euless. This is a benefit for Dallas accordion and piano player, Dennis Cavalier. Lots of area players are there and the jam session is great. At one point during my set, I hear some great piano-pounding behind me, turn around and, there is Dennis, playing some second-line like the force he is.
June 30: The Evangeline Cafe
July 7: The Continental Club for a memorial jam to honor a real music fan, Mr. Dutch Koontz. Dutch and his dear wife, Eunice, kept an eye on me and lots of other pickers during our lean years and helped make it possible for some of us to feel like we were contributing to something, instead of just wasting our lives. Also, through Dutch and Eunice, I met the wonderful and never-to-be-forgotten Austin piano legend, Mr. Erbie Bowser. We all had many good times here at "church", which is what we called those Friday afternoon get-togethers. Our dear friend Dutch will be greatly missed, but the memorial is a huge success and Eunice gives all of us who are there a little something to remember him by.
July 14: Guero's Taco Bar
July 28: Hot Summer Nights Concert Series in Odessa. Rain is forecasted but, we think, surely it won't... then, after a thoroughly good sound-check, we run to the hotel to change, only to be informed, as we're checking in, that the rain has come and... our equipment has been thouroughly soaked. By midafternoon of the next day, our van and equipment are sufficiently dried out to continue to the next gig.
July 29: J & R's Sports Bar in Big Springs. This place is the favorite watering hole of my old buddy and, favorite crop-duster pilot, Steve Anglin. Turns out to be a great night.
July 30: Luxello Hall in San Antonio. One can't say enough about this gig. First, it is at the former Cibolo Creek Country Club (try an internet search on this...) out on Evans Road just west of I-35 at the Selma exit. Second, it's the second of their, newly begun, Cajun or Zydeco, last Sunday of every month. (Rosie Ledet played to a big crowd there in June...) Third, there's an extra big crowd on hand to help our good friend Bobbie Goff celebrate surviving!!! There is Louisiana food and much more, including a good jam session in the early evening featuring both San Antonio and Austin musicians.
August 5: The AllGood Cafe in Dallas. My good friend, Mike Snider, (recent recipient of title "Best Chicken-Fried Steak" by is inaugerating a monthly Saturday Night Fish Fry, featuring Cajun-fried catfish, on the first Saturday of each month and... we're his very first band to play. His food, as always, is great.
August 11: Austin City Hall Plaza at 12 Noon. Many come enjoy lunch downtown with yours truly and his Squeezetones, plus the great Danny Roy Young on rubboard, while many more just watch it on TV from the cool of their homes.
August 11: Guero's Taco Bar
August 13: Nutty Brown Cafe on Highway 290 West. On this day, lots of Austin musicians give their time, for the benefit of the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
August 27: Key's Lounge in Fort Worth. Once again, I am the special guest of Gunzy Trevino on drums and Mace Maben on guitar. And, again, a good night.
September 1: Here are two of my personal favorite bands. I have seen each of these groups on several occasions and, believe me, both are delivering something unique and wonderful. First, out of Austin, a group which goes by the name of "Larry Lange's Lonely Knights." These six guys make it their business to mix the Swamp Pop of Louisiana with the Latin Soul of Texas. Sunny and The Sunliners meet The Boogie Kings. This is the music of my youth, the music which got me hooked on music in the first place. It is also, btw, music which fills the dance floors with every song. Secondly, out of Dallas, a trio going by the name of "Reverend Organdrum." The band's name is derived from two of their instruments and one of their stage-names. Tim Alexander plays organ, Todd Soesbe is on drums and Jim Heath (aka the Reverend Horton Heat) is on guitar. Their extremely far-reaching song-list is almost entirely instrumental and ranges from movie and TV themes to surf classics. They are just putting the finishing touches on their first CD together and I hope it contains the "Route 66" theme, which they nail.
September 7: Guero's Taco Bar for "First Thursday", Austin's hippest, South Congress tradition.
September 9: The Oaks. This is my long-time friend Steve Dean's new place. The Oaks is actually just immediately south of Manor on FM 973, which is only a mile or three east of Austin on Hwy. 290. (I mean, you can get there in ten minutes or so, but... you would think it's in Houston from the way lots of folks talk.) Bottom line? We music lovers are lucky to have possesion of this old establishment and we ought to support it. Tonight, our first night here, produced a small, but loving, crowd and we played, as usual, extremely well.
September 17: Gruene Hall
September 21: Lewis Cowdrey arrives in Dallas. Lewis has been a friend and inspiration to me since we first met back in the 60's, and played harp on my earliest work for the, now defunct, AMAZING Record label. So, after lots of reminiscing about the old days (like, when I played 3 nights with he and Angela Strehli, opening for Johnny Shines, at the Ash Grove in L.A.... c.1967,) we head to Fort Worth for our rehearsal, with the band, for our, up-coming, 3-nighter. Btw, especially for you Journal-readers, here is the typical way we meet for these rehearsals - a few blocks away at a Mexican restaurant named "Benito's" which is a favorite of mine for, not only the food and the hospitality, but for the temperature of the beer. Perfect. So, today, that's where Lew and I meet James 'para cerveza, comida, y mucho mas conversacion.' Finally, after all this good-vibesy-time, the rehearsal goes by like a blur. Bottom line: we are going to rock these next three nights.
September 22: Deep Ellum Blues in Dallas. Night #1. Medium size crowd, many of whom are old friends of Lewis. The band sounds great.
September 23: Ovation in Fort Worth. Night #2. Not only is it really good, but it gets recorded. When we hear the playback later at the club, we think: release it!
September 24: The Keys Lounge in Fort Worth. Night #3. Also mostly fun and, definitely... to be continued.
September 27: Lucky me. I am invited to "sit-in" at an incredible show, featuring the Jackie Don Loe band with both Mr. Bobby Patterson and Mr. Lou Hampton, all true veterans of this scene. This regular show, known as the Soul Review, is highly recommended, btw, and held each 4th Wednesday of the month at Nate's Seafood (where the food is real good, too, btw...) in Addison. I will see you there.
October 1: Happy Everyday to all my fellow Libras (and happening ones...,) and, especially to my one and only grandson, born on my birthday, the 9th of October. John, Jr. is a really good young man and a tribute to his parents. And best wishes to all the rest of you, too.
October 5: Guero's Taco Bar on South Congress
October 28: Fredericksburg's Annual Wine and Music Festival with, not only incredible wine and food for sampling and purchasing, but, our regular band is augmented by our new horn section (Ray Strucker on trumpet or trombone and Steve Bernstein on saxes) to great acclaim. Owww...!!!
November 1: I went to the State Fair of Texas three times this year. A very special thanks to everyone involved in the production of the Accordions in Tejano Music exhibit. Not only was the exhibit awesome, but the absolutely incredible Mingo Saldivar, usually seen with a loud, electric back-up band, gave a short workshop, with only bajo-sexto back-up. Which, ... had to be seen (and heard) to be believed! They don't call him the dancing cowboy for nothing. His feet never stop dancing, all the while he is just re-inventing the relationship between tradition, and, technique enough for improvisation, on his three-row accordions.
November 2: The Original (Behind The Store) Terlingua Chili Cook-Off out in the wilds of Big Bend. We perform, as we have had the pleasure of doing several other years, for the, highly "exuberant" crowd, behind the store(!), at the 40th(!) Cook-Off. This particular evening, The Squeezetones play two long sets; it's some good times.
November 3: Railroad Blues in Alpine. Small-ish crowd but huge night, musically.
November 4: Due to some "mix-up" (?) the band and I do not get to play tonight for the Cook-Off, despite being there... At the Cook-Off... In Terlingua... 500 miles from home.
November 5: Long drive back to Austin, but it's for a Birthday Party for Curtis Clark of the Evangeline Cafe. Lots of great players are in the house, and I get to jam with old friends Johnny X, Speedy Sparks, Rusty Traps and Will Indian of The Nortons. Cool.
November 10: Luxello Hall in San Antonio
November 12: Stubbs BarBQ in Austin for a Lubbock-themed event, Chris Oglesby's book-signing and reunion. His new book is titled "Fire in the Water, Dust in the Air" and many musicians play, including Jimmie Gilmore, David Halley, Conni and Traci Lamar Hancock, Robert Livingston, Jay Boy Adams, and many others.....
November 19: Gruene Hall
December 2: Sportsmans Expo in Wichita, Kansas. Despite listings in both the Dallas Observer and (with a large photo) the Dallas Morning News, the Squeezetones and I are not in Dallas. They are... somewhere else, and I am in Wichita, Kansas with Lewis Cowdrey, James Hinkle and others for a special, open-to-the-public, birthday party. Oohlala, what a good time we had. We'll be back. And thanks to Mike Snider of The AllGood for being so understanding.
December 8: The Evangeline Cafe
December 15: Guero's Taco Bar
December 22: The Armadillo Christmas Bazaar at the Austin Music Hall. We introduce the horn-section to our Austin crowd and, the results are in, they dig it. Our playing here has become a tradition we all love, where we see people we haven't seen since last year. Hey... where you been? Seriously, thanks to the vendors, as well as Bruce and his staff, for many years of inspiration.
December 25: This Christmas Day finds Celeste and I in a snowy, icy house and happy to have a bunch of rented movies and lots of home-made comfort food. Me, of course, I'm feeling philosophical. I am so thankful for all that I have, not the least of which is... two different homes. One is in South Austin's 78704, (the Zip Code of the Stars,) and the other is within walking distance of White Rock Lake in East Dallas. These are, to me, my generation's London and Paris or, at least, New York and L.A.
December 31: Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos for New Years Eve. Mike, Wash and I have the honor and privelege of being joined by Mr. R.C. Banks and the horn-section of Ray Strucker and Steve Bernstein for this last night of 2006. And, what a show! The crowd is our hugest ever at this venerable and much-loved venue. Much love to all; have a happy 2007!