The Checklist


I Got More Soul!, Bobby Patterson (Omnivore, July 22)
The seventy-year-old Dallas soul singer’s first album in sixteen years—ably produced in Austin by former Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears guitarist Zach Ernst, who did similar honors for gospel group the Relatives last year—finds him in astonishingly strong voice and good humor; a title like “Your Love Belongs Under a Rock” is all the hint you need that this is no mere reverential revival. 

Billy Joe Shaver Is Still Alive

Billy Joe Shaver celebrates two major milestones this month, and it’s hard to say which deserves the longer parade. On August 5 the Corsicana-born singer-songwriter will release his seventeenth studio album (and his first in seven years), Long in the Tooth. But the record’s title indicates what may be the greater accomplishment: eleven days later, the one outlaw-generation songwriter who everybody agreed was out of his mind and not long for this world will turn 75.

The Way They Get By

They Want My Soul is Spoon’s eighth record. And there’s perhaps no lousier time to write about a band than eight records into its career. By that point, the band’s backstory—the initial gathering of the members, the early feuds and struggles, the big break that may or may not have led to a big payday—has been told countless times.


In the sprawling backyard of the Houston Foundry, an industrial site turned artists’ studio just north of downtown, 29-year-old Kate dePara looks a bit like a mad scientist. Crouched over twenty yards of fabric spread across the ground, her hands sheathed in sturdy rubber gloves, she applies dye with an assortment of tools—spray bottles, sponges, a bamboo paintbrush, a fork. Nearby, another length of fabric sits in a bucket of steaming-hot water, while others dry on a giant wooden rack.

12 Ways to #VoteKeuchel

It's been five years since the Houston Astros had more than the mandatory minimum number of players in the All-Star Game. Which is to say, two. That's so long ago that Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Mike Hampton, and Carlos Lee were still around, though it was Hunter Pence and Miguel Tejada who earned the '09 All-Star nods. 

How To Survive As An Austin Rock Club For Four Decades

The band Fastball is best known for their 1998 mid-tempo hit “The Way,” but last month in Austin, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the University of Texas-area rock club Hole in the Wall, they slammed through several frenzied rockers from their 1996 debut, Make Your Mama Proud, which the group hadn’t played in 15 years. “No wonder we were so skinny back then,” frontman Miles Zuniga joked.

Phil Collins Donates His Expansive Alamo Memorabilia Collection to the General Land Office

In the five years since Phil Collins first made known his lifelong fascination with the Alamo, news coverage of his interest in Texas history has ranged from the man-bites-dog variety to downright mean. For Texans, the fact that one of the world’s richest musicians—Collins has sold more than 250 million records—might spend a small fraction of his royalty checks collecting treasured artifacts from the Texas Revolution is not so hard to fathom.


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