Leon Bridges Is One Step Closer To Completing The Late-Night Cycle and Forbes Says Dallas Got Next.
If we had to make any sweeping, knee-jerk predictions as to what 2016 was going to hold for the North Texas music scene, we'd say not only that would it continue to dominate the national music landscape, but that it might finally start earning recognition for doing so.
And, hey, that's maybe not the stretch that it sounds. By the end of 2015, NTX musicians were already driving the national conversation, showing up on every awards show, dominating the top of the charts and performing on every late-night television program. The future, it would appear, is quite bright around these parts.
That much is now only further confirmed by Forbes, which just put out its annual list of the national music scene's “30 Under 30” for 2016. Appearing on the list is no fewer than six folks with local ties — or, y'know, a whopping 20 percent — including Selena Gomez (23), Demi Lovato (23), Nick Jonas (23), Pentatonix and Leon Bridges (26), plus the Austin-based Sascha Guttfeund (26), whose ScoreMore entity regularly books shows to these parts
One of the entities responsible for putting together that list was Austin guitar-slinger Gary Clark, Jr., who is currently on tour in Australia. Coincidentally, list-maker Leon Bridges is on tour there too at the moment. Being a couple of Texas boys Down Under the same week, they couldn't help but bring each other out for guest spots at their respective shows. First up, Clark came out for “Mississippi Kisses,” the final song of Bridges' set at the Sydney Metro on Sunday. Then, last night, Bridges and his sax player Jeff Dazey returned the favor, assisting Clark on “Shake” at the Sydney Opera House. Catch some fan-shot vids of both performances below.
And that's not the only move the 26-year-old Fort Worth native made this week. Today, Bridges announced that after playing Fallon, Corden, Colbert, Jools Holland, Conan and SNL last year, he'll add Kimmel to his late-night resume next Tuesday, January 12. I guess that's just a Seth Meyers left to go, huh?
Elsewhere from that same Forbes list, Demi Lovato did the duet thing with Fall Out Boy in the *NSYNC homage that is that band's new “Irresistible” video, which also features Joey Fatone and Chris Kirkpatrick.
But it wasn't just the under-30 crowd getting love this week. The Kessler Theater's creative director, Jeff Liles proved he's “never too old to rock” via an 1,800-word profile appearing in the January issue of Texas Monthly.
Another big Lone Star publication, Texas Music magazine's list of the year's best albums featured a number of North Texans, including Kacey Musgraves, Leon Bridges, Doug Burr, James McMurtry, Erykah Badu and Jake Paleschic.
Moving on, we've got a trio of festival-related quick hits.
First, Lee Ann Womack, Chris Knight, Mike Ryan and Zane Williams represent the first crop of acts playing this year's Texas Music Revolution festival which, after a number of years at South Fork Ranch, moves to Plano's Oak Point Nature Preserve (read: the site of 2014's ill-fated Suburbia) for its 20th go-round this Easter weekend.
Similarly, after debuting at the Cotton Bowl last year, the big EDM gathering known as Something Wonderful will move to Texas Motor Speedway for its sophomore round. Look for that one to go down April 23, and stay tuned for the announcement of performers.
Before either of those, though, Denton's Thin Line fest returns the weekend of February 17 through 21. While organizers tell us the complete lineup of performers is still forthcoming, a few names have already been announced. Among those, we know Alejandro Escovedo will headline a bill at Dan's Silverleaf that Saturday along with Daniel Markham and Birds of Night.
Speaking of Escovedo: The new Dallas resident, says the Observer, may or may not be involved with another new Bucks Burnett project called — get this! — The Rock Stars, which may make its debut at some point in the indeterminate future at Gold Rush Café possibly. Meanwhile, we're still waiting to hear something — nay, anything — from Burnett and Escovedo's last new band.
Meanwhile, a handful of local musicians released actual real music this week. Among them? Hate Your Friends' Christian Medrano, who posted an old solo tune to his BandCamp page. That one's called “You Are Alive,” and you can totally listen to it below right now.
Also currently available to stream is the third installment of FXXXXY's ANKIEYENT series — a.k.a. the chopped and screwed edition. The Earl Sweatshirt-approved musician has made that one available for listening below.
Then, next month, Drowning Pool will release its forthcoming Hellelujah LP — its second with current frontman Jasen Moreno. The outfit recently premiered a new single called “Snake Charmer” via Billboard, and Moreno told the magazine the song was “about how to keep kicking ass when things go bad.”
Elsewhere: War Party will release its new LP as part of a January 30 show at (new?) Fort Worth venue The UnderWhere, which just so happens to be located just around the corner from the old Where House spot; that new Rigor Mortis documentary is now available for purchase here; and that J. Cole documentary that debuts on HBO this weekend apparently features some footage from that crazy $1 show he held at the House of Blues last year.