With apologies to North Texas—who Texas handled 38-7 in last weekend’s college football opener—the Longhorns’ season, and the era of Charlie Strong, the new head coach, really begins this Saturday with Brigham Young. Last year’s game against BYU was the beginning of the end for Mack Brown, the outgoing coach. BYU rushed for a whopping 550 yards en route to a 40-21 upset of Texas, who was ranked number fifteen. Texas promptly fired its defensive coordinator and still managed to win a string of games. But three big losses to end the season sealed Coach Brown’s fate. Enter Coach Strong, whose no-nonsense style was evident at training camp where he reportedly stripped players of the longhorn logo on their helmets, saying it had to be earned. He instituted a code of conduct that prohibits drugs, guns, and stealing and mandates honesty and the respectful treatment of women. A handful of players who could not abide by Coach Strong’s rules were suspended or dismissed. So far this approach seems to appeal to fans. The question is, how will it translate on the field against a formidable opponent—and without David Ash, the starting quarterback who suffered yet another, possibly career-ending concussion against North Texas.
Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, Sept. 6, 6:30 p.m., texassports.com
Free At Last
Billy Smith served almost twenty years for a rape he did not commit, and after being granted a DNA test, he was exonerated in 2006. Christopher Scott served twelve years for a murder that he did not commit, and after college students in Texas demonstrated that his was a case of mistaken identity, he was exonerated in 2009. Richard Miles served fourteen years for a murder and an attempted murder that he did not commit, and after passing a polygraph test showing his innocence, he was exonerated in 2012. These three Dallasites have already told their stories in the book Tested: How Twelve Wrongly Imprisoned Men Held Onto Hope, by Dorothy Budd, a former prosecutor for the Dallas County district attorney’s office turned Episcopal deacon, and her daughter and co-writer, Peyton Budd. But on Tuesday, they will rejoin Budd as part of the Upstander Speaker Series. The discussion will show how Dallas has become the exoneree capital of the nation under Craig Watkins, the Dallas County district attorney, and will no doubt give the audience a fresh perspective on freedom.
Dallas Holocaust Museum, Sept. 9, 7 p.m., dallasholocaustmuseum.org
The Texas singer-songwriters Hayes Carll and Carrie Rodriguez are among twelve musicians who have taken their experience with being the frequent subject of photographs and turned it around, zeroing in on subjects to document themselves. Their exchange of a mike for a camera will culminate in an auction in October, featuring one photograph from each musician—including other Texans Ian Moore, Little Joe Washington, and Walt Wilkins—as part of the Twelve project, benefiting Galveston-area youth interested in the arts and in need of financial assistance. To get potential bidders primed, concerts with the musicians will take place in the lead-up to the auction, with Carll, whose chosen photograph is of a turquoise pick-up truck, and Rodriguez, whose photo features a smiley face, getting things started with Saturday’s show.
The Grand 1894 Opera House, Sept. 6, 7 p.m., twelvepeople.org
A prized find is the ultimate for the discerning collector, but part of the thrill of the pursuit is meeting other collectors. At the International Association of Jazz Record Collectors’ annual convention, audiophiles, academics, and writers, among others, will bond over two and a half days’ worth of music and expert presentations. The subjects range from Benny Goodman, the clarinet-playing bandleader known as the “King of Swing,” to Sippie Wallace, the pianist and blues singer known as the “Texas Nightingale.” San Antonio’s history as a recording hub in the thirties for the labels Victor and Vocalion will also be explored.
Sheraton Gunter Hotel, Sept. 4-6, iajrc.org
75 Years Gone
The exhibit “The Making of Gone with the Wind,” commemorating the movie’s seventy-fifth anniversary, draws exclusively from the archive of the film’s producer, David O. Selznick, which, at five thousand boxes, is the largest at the Harry Ransom Center. Around three hundred rare and never-before-exhibited items will provide viewers with a closer look at how the film, set during the Civil War and Reconstruction, influenced the race relations of its day.
Harry Ransom Center, Sept. 9-Jan. 4, hrc.utexas.edu
The first vineyard in Texas dates to the mid-1600s; today there are around 310, making the state the fifth-largest wine producer in America. The fruits of this growth will be on display at the twenty-eighth annual GrapeFest, a four-day affair of tastings, food pairings and grape stomping, with an emphasis on wines from Washington and Italy.
Downtown, Sept. 11-14, grapevinetexasusa.com