April 2004 Issue


Black and white headshot of Beyonce.

It’s a Family Affair

For all her talent and poise, Beyoncé didn’t become the biggest star in the world without help. And she got plenty of it from the people who know her best.

King of the Accordion

You may never have heard of Ramón Ayala, but to his four generations of fans in South Texas and Mexico, he’s music royalty. He revolutionized norteño, a genre that reigns along the border, and—after more than one hundred albums—is still going strong.

Spoon at a Fork

According to Time, the Austin rock-pop trio Spoon "just might be your next favorite band." But Britt Daniel and the boys have been burned by such pronouncements before, so this time they’re carefully considering their options—and, as always, putting their music first.


Lives + Times

No Fuss

"It's still easy to walk around New York unrecognized. I'm kind of nerdy and not fashionable, so people don't give me a second look."

City Girl

"I moved to Austin in 1974, and it was this kind of magical place. The whole alternative culture controlled the town."

Lives + Times

A Lyrical Life

"While I was in Hollywood, I wrote for Eddie Arnold and Ernest Tubb and Roy Rogers and Tex Ritter—everybody you can think of."

Lives + Times

Nice and Easy

"I have a very comfortable lifestyle as a jazz musician. Every day is a Saturday for me."

Lives + Times

Teeny Popper

"I used to think, 'I can't perform in front of these people!' And then last night I did a show for more than 13,000."

Lives + Times

Road Warrior

"There were a lot of wild nights, people taking us in and offering us whatever they had. There were a lot of those 'offerings.'"



Happy Trails

Happy Trails

If you're looking for a cool place to see live music, then head to Helotes and the John T. Floore Country Store.

The Song Writer

"My next assignment was supposed to be teaching English at the Academy at West Point, but I didn't go. I got out of the Army and went to Nashville instead, and I think Johnny Cash was probably the biggest reason."

Texas History 101

Texas History 101

From the somber passing of a tejana queen to the day the music died, tragedy has left its deep mark upon a few bright, talented musicians who called the Lone Star State home during their short lives.

Web Exclusive

Crime Scene

Suzanne O'Malley, the author of Are You There Alone? The Unspeakable Crime of Andrea Yates, talks about mental illness, postpartum psychosis, and Rusty Yates.

War Record

"The Dixie Chicks recorded 'Travelin' Soldier,' one of the first songs I wrote, and it did great until the girls got embroiled in that crazy media-frenzy."

Guitar Man

"I'm the one who introduced guitar boogie-woogie in this country, with a song I called 'Gatemouth Boogie.' It was a big hit."


Toasted Almond Panna Cotta

Chef Monica Pope, T’afia, Houston1/2 cup almonds 1 1/2 cups milk 2 cups cream 1/2 cup and 2 teaspoons sugar a pinch of salt 3 leaves gelatin (or 3 teaspoons gelatin)Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast the almonds for 8 minutes. While they are toasting, heat the milk, cream, sugar,

Books That Cook

Books That Cook

Dean Fearing, the executive chef of Dallas’s Mansion on Turtle Creek, put Southwestern cuisine on the map (okay, he had a little help from his friends), but did you know he was one of the founding members of Texas’s grooviest celebrity-chef rock band, the Barbwires? The original group (Fearing, Robert

Pat's Pick

Primary Flavors

Smell of Success Everybody knows about heirloom tomatoes and apples, the historic varieties that have endured for decades or even centuries in garden plots and back yards. But heirloom garlic? Some fifteen years ago, Hallettsville native Anton Bujnoch’s sister bought several heads of garlic at a market in Mexico (nobody

Pat's Pick

Best Fests

Wham, Bam, Thank You, Spam Come April 3, Spam is taking over the capital of Texas. Austin’s Spamarama—a festival as infamous as the potted pork product that it celebrates—started 26 years ago as a joke and has grown over the years into a gonzo tribute to the gelatinous hunk of

Pat's Pick


Sitting in T’afia’s smart, quasi-industrial space watching the crowds of noshing, tippling patrons, it occurred to me that Monica Pope, the restaurant’s owner and chef, has given herself a new lease on life. Dishes from her previous Houston venue, Boulevard Bistrot, seemed livelier than ever, and the new creations




MONUMENTAL EVENTS You heard the buzz. You saw the trailers. The release date came . . . and went. Remember The Alamo? Before you fork over $15 for a ticket and the requisite popcorn, take the opportunity this month to explore Texas’s history firsthand. On April 3 Abilene offers its



COURIER SERVICES Thirty-three-year-old Jim Courier, who was ranked the number one tennis player in the world in 1992, will host the Grand-SlamJam tennis exibition in Austin April 29 and 30. Proceeds from the event will be donated to the Hope Foundation, a cancer research organization.I read that you’re a musician.If



LAUGH TRACK Why is it that Lucille Ball is still hilarious and Andrew Dice Clay isn’t? We’re willing to take a big leap and say it has something to do with personal style, delivery, and content. This month you can see for yourself (if you’re lucky enough to score a



PLAYTIMES It’s awesome April, baby—or so the colorfully alliterative Dick Vitale might say if he were to sum up this month’s sports lineup. Start in the Alamo City, which hosts this season’s marvelously maddening men’s NCAA Final Four. Sure, the semifinals on April 3 and the championship game on April

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