Joy to Your World 12/31/2014
A friend told me this over lunch: Write a book called 5 Ways To Be Happy and you’ll sell a million of them. I thought a moment, then disagreed.
Night Walk 12/23/2014
I was supposed to go to a Christmas party last Saturday night. But I wasn’t in the mood for pastel-colored cookies or bells that jingle or green sweaters with red noses. I was in a monochrome state of mind.
Of Fruitcake and Family 12/17/2014
This week I tasted a 60-year-old fruitcake.
A Special Evening with Sandi Patty 12/10/2014
Of all the music “stars” I’ve interviewed over 10 years doing this column, none has elicited the excitement as when friends found out I was going to speak with Sandi Patty.
Beauty vs. Function 12/02/2014
Oysters vs doughnuts. Which would you rather eat?
Of Gewgaws and Tchotchkes 11/26/2014
With the critical shopping days upon us, think back over Christmases past. Can you really remember the trinkets, gewgaws and tchotchkes you unwrapped?
The Right Tool 11/19/2014
My watch stopped.
Mike Blakely: The songwriter in the singer 11/12/2014
One common thread with singers is how much credit they give to a part of the process the fans never see–the writing.
A Tasteful Evening 11/5/2014
When he was in high school, Kris Kimura used to listen to jazz greats Harry Connick Jr. and Diana Krall. Now, they listen to him.
The Act of Magic 10/29/2014
“A Magician is an Actor playing the part of a Magician”
Where the sidewalk doesn't end 10/22/2014
Guiding foot traffic is like herding mercury. No matter which way you want it to go, it infuriatingly seeks the shortest path that offers the least resistance.
Off the Couch 10/15/2014
Seems it gets harder and harder to haul our butts up off the couch.
Marty Haggard: Living a Country Song 10/8/2014
Being the child of a music legend is almost like a song. In the case of Marty Haggard, it’s a country song. A long, hard, redeeming, pure country song.
Robert Earl Keen pops top on new brew 10/1/2014
What do you get when you cross a Fredericksburg brewery with a Kerrville singer, and stir in some Llano honey?
Paint Dreams 9/24/2014
I remember the year my dad took a painting class. It changed the way I looked at grownups.
If you are an introvert, I know of a powerful tool that will change your life. But it could also kill you.
At the Fredericksburg PBR coming to the Gillespie County Fair Grounds this weekend, keep an eye on the best athletes in the arena. That would be the bulls.
Where have all the paperboys gone? 9/3/2014
Having kids sling newspapers on porches seems as antediluvian as sending children down into the coal mines.
The Skirl of Bagpipes 8/27/2014
On a recent Sunday, families neighboring the Blackwell Fire Station in Kerrville enjoyed the typical sounds of a summer evening: the splash of a pool, the chirp of crickets, the purr of a lawnmower... and the skirl of bagpipes?
Moe Bandy 8/20/2014
For country star Moe Bandy, playing at the Gillespie County Fair in Fredericksburg this Saturday night is like coming home.
Star Trek: The Voyage Home 8/13/2014
When I played in a band at a bar in Riverside, Iowa, Earth, in the mid-20th century, I wish I’d known I was standing in the very room where Captain James T. Kirk would be conceived 250 years in the future.
Do not respond, s'il vous plait 8/6/2014
I hate parties.
A Crazy 18 Seconds 8/6/2014
The horse races at the Gillespie Fair Grounds have been described as 20 minutes of calm interrupted by 18 seconds of craziness.
Luckenbach, Elevated 7/31/2014
It ain’t your Opa’s taco truck.
Color Me Iowan 7/23/2014
The main reason we travel is to come back home and tell about it.
The Two Cs 7/16/2014
In one year of working outside an organization, I’ve learned more about how they function than I knew from 30 years of working inside them.
I hate home improvement 7/9/2014
I was born without the fix-it gene.
Beer & Hymns: What would Jesus brew? 7/2/2014
“We don’t care who you are, or what religion you practice–we don’t care. If you want to sing and drink a beer, come here.”
Say It With Rhubarb 6/25/2014
Don’t ever tell someone you like their rhubarb pie. Or you will be eating rhubarb pie the rest of your life.
Rockbox Cast-Aways 6/18/2014
While pinching pears in the produce aisle at the local H-E-B, I noticed a group of animated young folks doing their own grocery shopping. I knew I knew them, but it took me a moment to realize how–I had recently watched them perform at the Rockbox Theater.
Hillbilly Humor 6/11/2014
I was sitting in a high school gym in a small town in Iowa. The band was sawing away at classic country tunes. When the opening song ended, a hillbilly clown dressed in baggy overalls and floppy hat came out from back stage with a glass of water for the lead singer to quench his thirst.
Conspirare: Breathe Together 6/4/2014
During the performance of Conspirare this Thursday, you will have two questions to consider.
Film 365 5/28/2014
Matt Ward intends to watch 365 movies this year.
She Flies Through The Air 5/21/2014
At one time or another, hasn’t every kid dreamed of running off and joining the circus? Lee Stath did it.
Failure and the Long Run 5/14/2014
Over the next four days in a field about 13 miles north of Fredericksburg, several hundred high school students are going to be taking a test. Most will experience failure.
5 Minutes Into The Future 5/7/2014
What if you could peek into the future?
Accidental Haiku 4/30/2014
This week’s column is about haiku. I’ll pause while most of you roll your eyes and turn to the obituaries.
Second Skin 4/23/2014
Sometimes your life journey leads you to your desired destination; it just might not look the way you imagined when you arrive.
Pure Milsap 4/16/2014
The Ronnie Milsap “sound” is a blend of country, blues, R&B, and gospel. But when pressed to choose which style of music he would sing if he had his “druthers,” Milsap did not hesitate.
Bike Art 4/9/2014
“I know! Let’s go around and look at art. But... let’s ride bikes to do it!”
Kinky Friedman: Defender of Strays 4/2/2014
“Money may buy you a fine dog, but only love can make him wag his tail.” International celebrity and Hill Country resident Richard “Kinky” Friedman is seeking both money and love at his Concert for Utopia on April 13.
Frank, Jr. 3/26/2014
Though you have passed by his birthplace many times, here’s a story you probably don’t know about a Fredericksburg resident.
Ukulele Murphey 3/19/2014
The instrument that started Michael Martin Murphey on the road to become one of the top writers/singer songwriters in the industry is one you won’t hear him play on stage.
Manatees in the Mist 3/12/2014
Before there were bucket lists, I scratched off an item that I never put on it: I swam with manatees.
Finding Inspiration 3/5/2014
What inspires you?
Turn On The Dark 2/26/2014
What do you do after dark?
Every winter, my nephews and their friends place five old pianos in a ring, build a bonfire in the center, then pound away on them until they go up in flames. We call it “Pianocolypse.” Turns out Johnny Nicholas has been doing the same thing for years, except for the “going up in flames” part. No, he just finds five of the hottest piano players around who burn up the keys with their bare hands.
In the Mood for some Glenn Miller 2/12/2014
My mom used to do her ironing listening the songs of Frank Sinatra, Benny Goodman, and Glenn Miller on the radio. I wanted to hear Elvis and Buddy Holly. Nick Hilscher grew up with parents who listened to Elvis and Buddy Holly. Hilscher preferred hearing the big bands.
Fritztown Cinema: That's Entertainment 2/5/2014
In 2014, with the choice of satellite, cable, streaming video, discs spit from a vending machine, and roku, hulu, and dongles, why do we still want to watch movies in a theater?
Mel Tillis: Take Too 1/29/201
I got a second chance to make a first impression this weekend when I had 7 minutes with Mel Tillis.
Mel Tillis: In His Own Words 1/22/2014
I was supposed to interview country music superstar Mel Tillis in anticipation of his performance this weekend. He canceled the interview. But I decided to run it anyway.
Esther Lehmann: Part II 1/15/2014
Esther Lehmann never really knew if her uncle Herman was happy back in his German home. One effect of his Indian upbringing was a reluctance to show emotion.
Esther Lehmann: Part I 1/8/2014
History from a distance is a textbook. But when it sits across the table from you, history lives.