Josh Ward continues streak of #1 songs!

Nashville, TN (June 13, 2018) - Over the course of three album releases, pure country music artist Josh Ward has proven himself to be a radio magnet. His two previous albums “Promises” in 2012 and “Holding Me Together” in 2015 have generated a combined total of nine #1 hit singles making Ward a steadfast resident of the Texas Regional Radio Chart for seven years running. What started out as a sprint in 2012 has now settled into a marathon pace as his brand new single “All About Lovin’” off his new album hit #1 this week. So, hand this man a water bottle as he strides through his TENTH consecutive #1.

“Can’t thank radio enough for their constant support of my music. To have come this far seems so surreal and I am a very grateful man. I am also so grateful to my fans, the very people I make this music for. If it wasn’t for them we wouldn’t have places to play or milestones like this to celebrate. –Josh Ward

Josh Ward’s fourth full length album “More Than I Deserve” was released on May 4th and has amassed just shy of 300,000 streams in the first few weeks of release. The album debuted at #15 on Billboard's Heatseekers Chart and debuted at #5 on the iTunes country albums chart. Critic’s praises call the album “next level,” “a solid, neo-traditional sound,” “powerful with spirituality-infused imagery” and ”a true country album from start to finish.” To date, Ward’s music has garnered over 2 million views on YouTube and over 3 million streams on Spotify globally. With such mass appeal and a demand for his live show, Ward’s tour schedule will expand into a lot of new territory this year.

Josh will be at Whitewater Amphitheater w/Cody Jinks on July 6th and 7th!

Check tour dates at www.joshwardmusic.com

Paul Cauthen & The Texas Gentlemen at Gruene Hall

Paul Cauthen is currently touring his forthcoming 7-song EP "Have Mercy" due out on June 22nd. You can already pick up a copy of this GREAT new music produced by Beau Bedford of The Texas Gentlemen. Speaking of, The Texas Gentlemen were there opening and in support of Paul's Gruene Hall show! Dan Dyer got up and sang quite a few songs with The Texas Gentlemen, and Austin Gilliam joined Paul.

If you're not able to pick up Paul's new EP at a show before it releases, you can pre-order it on iTunes and you'll get 2 tracks when you do. Or, you can check out 2 song on Lightning Rod Records' YouTube channel.

Paul will also be playing The Grand Ole Opry on June 22nd!

For this show, I brought along Jake Dapper, a great photographer from Waco to document things better than my usual iPhone garbage. Check them out below!

[view the entire album on Facebook!]

Everclear's 90's Nostalgia Summerland Tour

Everclear's Summerland Tour w/Marcy Playground and Local H
The mid-90's was a time when I was squarely transitioning from primarily listening to rock and some grunge from bands such as Van Halen, GNR, Aerosmith, Chili Peppers, Green Day, Metallica, Soundgarden & Nirvana, to a solid dose of country from one of the more forgotten times in Country music save a few artists. I capped that rock phase off by going to a Woodstock '94 pay-per-view watching/listening party with a friend, and of course all the big names of the day were there. Thanks to a little allergy medicine after some yard work and a couple of cups of punch out of a water can not long after I arrived, I slept through several hours of the festivities and missed quite a few bands.

Soon after this, enter a couple of songs from a band newly signed to Capitol Records that caught my ear, but wasn't able to wedge me out of my country funk. I remember hearing 'Heroin Girl' from their new album 'Sparkle and Fade' a couple of times on MTV and thinking to myself that the grunge movement had gone a little far because it sounded like they were glorifying the drug lifestyle, then I snapped out of it and realized I was 25 and didn't have any kids so why should this bother me? I mean I never got into that, but to each his own, right? Maybe it should have bothered me more then, but that's not what we're talking about.

It wasn't until I heard 'Santa Monica' that I really perked up and took notice of Everclear, which if I'm honest is what was in that punch at that Woodstock party. I loved this song, and was on the verge of becoming a big Everclear fan, but that stupid 90's country craze with all those weird Garth Brooks shirts and songs about thunder rolling and rodeo kept my ear for a few more years.

So fast forward to 2015, and I hear one of my favorite, local music venues is gonna have Art Alexakis from Everclear doing an acoustic show! I was pretty excited and was looking forward to it, but as generally happens when you try your hardest to let wife and children come above music, I wasn't able to make it to this show or in 2016 when he did it again! Then in 2017 he brought his Summerland tour through New Braunfels at River Road Ice House and I for one reason or another missed it. I really wanted to make it to this show, it was not only Everclear, but Fuel, American Hi-Fi and Toadies. I had been wanting to see Toadies for awhile, and it seemed like the perfect chance, but again I let it slip through my fingers.

I finally let the music fan in me win this time. I went to River Road Ice House on Friday, May 18th, and not only was I thoroughly glad I FINALLY went and saw Everclear perform, but it turns out Marcy Playground and Local H are pretty amazing bands as well! I recognized some of what I heard from both of them!

Local H has been around since 1987 and they were great! Turns out they had a bassist for a few years, but front man Scott Lucas had a pretty unique guitar setup with an extra pickup under the bottom two strings of all his guitars that was fed into a bass rig, so he is lead guitarist AND bassist all at once... It was the loudest and meanest 2-piece band I've heard so far! Thanks to Austin Gilliam for the explanation of Scott's guitar!

Marcy Playground was very solid as well. They're a 3-piece band with drums, a bassist and front man John Wozniak on lead vocals and guitar. Bassist/vocalist Dylan Keefe and John Wozniak are original band members from 1996 on, and Shlomi Lavie has been on drums with Marcy Playground since 2009.

Everclear's original members from the 90's are long gone save founder, lead vocalist, guitarist and songwriter Art Alexakis, but bassist Freddy Herrera has been with Everclear since around 2009 and guitarist Dave French has mostly toured with Everclear since 2003! Drummer Jake Margolis came on board in 2017.

If you're a HUGE Everclear fan or if you just like good post-grunge rock music, I highly recommend catching a show while their Summerland tour continues through the summer!

photos:
Local H
Marcy Playground
Everclear

links:
Summerland 2018 Tour
EverclearMusic.com
MarcyPlayground.net
LocalH.com

Medicine Stone 6


Tahlequah, OK (May 15, 2018)-The 6th Annual MEDICINE STONE music festival heads back to Diamondhead Resort in Tahlequah, Oklahoma September 20th through September 22nd. This unique three-day live music retreat on the beautiful Illinois River stands alone as the premier Red Dirt music experience, a genre that has long been revered worldwide for its diverse sounds and quality of music. This year the event creators have added 30 acres of landscape for more space for camping as well as two additional reserved prime camping areas. Tickets for the 6th Annual MEDICINE STONE will go on sale through the event’s website on June 1st at 9:00 AM CST. Music fans are encouraged to snag their tickets early as the prime camping and RV spots, onsite lodging and hotel rooms sell out within hours. Single day tickets go on sale August 1st.

website: medicinestoneok.com

The music lineup each year is always handpicked by creators Jason Boland and Turnpike Troubadours and consists of the artists and bands whose music they themselves love and respect. It’s this kind of personal hands-on attention that makes Medicine Stone feel like a “family affair” and has drawn thousands to the event from all over the country since its inception. This year’s lineup includes Turnpike Troubadours, Jason Boland and The Stragglers, The Randy Rogers Band, Cody Canada & The Departed, Shooter Jennings, Wade Bowen, The Toadies, Reckless Kelly, Jamie Lin Wilson, Red Shahan, Mike McClure Band, Kaitlin Butts, John Fullbright, Dirty River Boys, Charley Crockett, Koe Wetzel, Read Southall, Micky & the Motorcars, Austin Meade, The Vandoliers, Flatland Calvary, Thomas Trapp, Red Dirt Rangers and more.

MEDICINE STONE offers an array of food, onsite amenities and an endless supply of music to keep you fully satisfied! The event features the main stage on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and the Gravel Bar Stage and Mary Ellen’s Greenhouse Stage for day time and after party shows.

“However you define Red Dirt music, there is something common in all of it, raw honesty in songs, the quality of the material, and the unwavering commitment to live music. Turnpike Troubadours and Jason Boland have accomplished a great thing by creating an event to celebrate this unique subgenre, and anyone with a love for country, rock, or just real, quality music should consider attending Medicine Stone.”
-Country Exclusive

“Although my home is in Texas my heart will always be in Oklahoma.Hail hail Medicine Stone!”
-Cody Canada/Cody Canada & The Departed

"Medicine Stone has become one of my favorite shows of the year. Turnpike and Boland have put together a great line up year after year of musicians I personally respect and am a fan of.”
-Randy Rogers/Randy Rogers Band

“I love music festivals that are put on by artists! They are way more laid back and the focus is always on the music and friendships. Medicine Stone is this and so much more. The fans that come to Medicine Stone, come for the music. The atmosphere is as laid back as the artists and great folks that organize and perform at this awesome gathering of friends, fans and musicians alike!”
-Cody Braun/Reckless Kelly

About the creators

Jason Boland and The Stragglers circa 1998 has become one of the most successful artists in the Red Dirt/Texas country music scene. Oklahoma born and bred, Boland has remained a true craftsman of genuine, no frills country music for nearly two decades. His new album “Hard Times Are Relative” releases May 18th and finds Jason Boland and The Stragglers once again expanding the boundaries of what country music can be while staying true to its original purpose: story telling in its purest form.

website: thestragglers.com

Acclaimed Oklahoma roots-rock powerhouse Turnpike Troubadours released their lastest album A Long Way From Your Heart on October 20th of 2017 and achieved the rare feat of creating an album that is immediately accessible, yet continues to reveal greater depth upon each listen. With his vivid character sketches and blue-collar narratives, Evan Felker continues to solidify his place as one of the finest songwriters to come out of the dustbowl in recent years.

website: turnpiketroubadours.com

Wade Bowen's Garage Mahal: Episode 9

Wade performs Jackson Browne's "Somebody's Baby"!

note:
Don't miss Wade Bowen at Gruene Hall on Friday, May 25th! Mason Lively opens the show!

Mason Lively at Freiheit Country Store this Friday!

Mason Lively recently dropped his first full-length album "Stronger Ties", and is having a CD release party this Friday (4/27) at Freiheit Country Store! Pedigo's Magic Pilsner is opening the show and the doors open at 7pm! Come see this amazing, young talent and pick up his new album! Mason is definitely one to watch, especially on the younger end of the Texas music scene. Stewart Mann and Trey Newman of the newly formed War Bird Management have been helping Mason with both his music and career, and they officially signed Mason on April 23rd!

Mason Lively grew up in the small town of Inez, Texas population 2,000. Lacking big city stimulation, Mason spent his developmental years taking his lessons from songs that were born long before he was. Completely immersed in the patchwork of genres he found the blueprint for songwriting at a very young age and wrote his first one at age 15. At the age of 16 he was already in the studio cutting his first 5-song EP called "Living Large in a Little Town" co-produced by Lloyd Maines and Pat Manske. Being his first music project, Mason did little more than sell it in local parking lots and hand it out to family members, but the promise it foretold of a budding career grabbed the attention of several “players” in the scene who sat back with eagle-eyed anticipation to wait patiently for the young maverick to ripen. They didn’t have to wait long. Trey Newman at the Lee Crosby Agency was one of the eagle-eye watchers who witnessed over time the cultivation of the kid’s stage presence, and in 2017 signed Mason as a booking client. Soon thereafter Trey introduced Mason to Stewart Mann, frontman and primary songwriter for the acclaimed country blues band The Statesboro Revue who stepped in to co-manage the upstart’s career. All agreed the time was at hand to release some new music and with Mason’s kettle of reserved songs now at the boiling point, he went back to the studio to record his first full length album “Stronger Ties.”

First impressions always speak the loudest and the very first thing that stands out about this album is its diversity. Where most artists strive for a cohesive sound and overall theme, Mason decided to let his genre flags fly and the result is a buffet-style feast for the ears, and there is something here for everyone. He wrote all 10 songs, and with the help of producer Pat Manske, each one came to live comfortably in its own world of sound. The first single “Lonely Comes Back Around” by far waves the Texas alt-country flag the highest, and will no doubt secure a permanent seat at radio’s table. “Heavy Toll” runs a close second, but takes it up several notches with a menacing guitar riff and rock-styled chord progression that is hammer on nail, touching on the taboos of road life that only a working musician can truly understand. And “Early Grave” and “Ballad Of The Broken Heart” are kissing cousins bringing in the “tonk” to douse the flames that devil woman set to your heart. But stamped on the lighter side of that tainted coin is the impression of optimism, and “Worry About Nothing” is the album’s cleverly crafted talisman: country cool and soothing like the stroke of a familiar hand on a worried brow. And for those that like their music a little blues-infused, they will break into their happy dance with “Role Play,” the brightest star in this constellation. And there is so much more. “Stronger Ties” is Mason’s way of paying tribute to the music scene that he loves and is proud to be a part of. “This is me not only as a music artist, but also as a listener.”

quotes:
“Mason is hands down one of the most driven, motivated, and knowledge-hungry young artists I’ve ever met, and he reminds me a lot of myself at his age, except I had a lot less talent. His appreciation for all genres of music and his ability to weave in and out of styles both as a writer and a singer is what initially intrigued me, and honestly he’s just too damn nice. How can a 20 year old be that talented and humble? I don’t have an answer to that but it’s what led me into the world of artist management for the first time in my career. I can’t wait for the world to hear Mason’s genre bending, Texas country meets blue eyed soul Americana music.” -Stewart Mann

"Mason Lively is the real deal. Blues/Rock/Americana/Texas all mixed together into something beautiful." -Shayne Hollinger/The Ranch Radio Ft. Worth.
links:
masonlively.com
facebook.com/masonlivelymusic
twitter.com/masonlively

Josh Ward to release new album on May 4th!

Nashville, TN-(April 10, 2018)-The legion of Josh Ward fans who have eagerly awaited his brand new album will be more than satisfied come May 4th with the release of “More Than I Deserve.” The album’s first single “All About Lovin’” is already sitting at the #30 spot on the Texas Regional Radio Chart after only 3 weeks. In celebration, Josh Ward’s Tonk Fest & CD Release Party will follow on Saturday, May 5th at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Conroe, Texas. Doors at 5:00 PM. Music starts at 6:00 PM with performances from Josh Ward, Jarrod Birmingham and Jake Worthington. Advance single tickets are $20. $25 at the gate, 12 and under free. The event also offers VIP packages at $150. There are only 100 available-21 and up only. Packages include 1 admission to VIP tent, 4 complimentary drink tickets for full liquor, wine and beer service, meal ticket for 1, reserved VIP seating close to stage, private VIP restrooms, VIP meet & greet prior to show, VIP laminate and 1 autographed CD. Tickets can be purchased at Outhouse Tickets.

“All grit and no quit.” These are the deeply rooted words that Josh Ward lives by to an absolute fault. An anchored mindset that has led this Texas country music rising star from a drifter’s adolescence to the jeopardous game of the rodeo circuit to the punishing toil of the Texas oil fields, and on into the fickle arms of the music business. Some might argue whether it is having nine consecutive #1 hit singles in Texas under his belt that has garnered him staying power, or that he is killing it in the social media world with over 2 million views on YouTube and over 3 million streams globally on Spotify. Maybe it’s his 3 venerated album releases, or maybe because he can not only bat a full house on a 200 plus dates a year touring average, but also rope in crowds on a first time performance in an unfamiliar town. While impressive, all those distinctions can come and go in the world of music. The reason for his staying power turns out to be quite a simple one. And that is because Josh Ward is country music blood to bone, and both Josh Ward and country music are simply not going to go away.

The culmination of his radio success and his victories out on the road can easily be attributed to the actual man behind the music. In life, sometimes a person gets dealt a lean hand and has to choose his family from strangers along the way, people who make a conscious choice to take you under their wing and help guide you through life. Ward considers himself a very lucky man despite some rough teenage years. The love and support of his extended family and his chosen family was the concrete foundation he built his life on, and his fans are a big part of that. It’s why they are drawn to him through the speakers, because he is what he sings. It’s why they are drawn to him from the stage, because he’s an old friend who’s come back to visit. And so his brand new album, so aptly named, is Ward’s dedication to his growing family.

“More Than I Deserve” marks Ward’s fourth full length album release and it will greet the fans on May 4, 2018. With the philosophy of “don’t fix what isn’t broken” Ward went right back into the Rosewood studios where he recorded all his previous releases and joined producer Greg Hunt once again behind the board to create the next dimension of Josh Ward country music. The new album is 11 tracks strong featuring the signature instrumentation from guys like John Carroll (Cory Morrow) on guitar, Nate Coon (Aaron Watson) on drums, Milo Deering (The Eagles) on acoustic guitar, steel, dobro, fiddle, viola and mandolin, and Terry McBride (McBride and The Ride) on backing vocals and also writer of three of the tracks. The album is classic Josh Ward style on every front with just a little more gusto and a little more miles on it. Full bodied and emotionally fragrant, every song jumps out kicking up the kind of country music nostalgia Ward is revered for. The first single “All About Lovin’” (written by Brice Long, Terry McBride and Chris Stapleton) tells you everything you need to know about this album, a sexy tonkafied driver of a song that guarantees you’ll be lacing up your dancing shoes by the time you hit the chorus. “Home Away From Home” is country piled on top of more country, and is, as the song says, “a two steppin’ juke box heaven.” While Ward has never been afraid to sing other people’s songs due to his belief that a good song simply needs to be heard, his own savvy for the art just so happens to be represented on three of the most powerful tracks. “A Cowboy Can” is the true grit of this album and is what Ward says best describes himself. “One More Shot Of Whiskey” is a sobering tale told with 90 proof conviction, and then there is “More Than I Deserved” ringing out with its vulnerable steel and head hanging resolve. “More Than I Deserve” is country music addiction in its purest form. Josh Ward did not reinvent the wheel here, but damn, it’s polished surface sure rides smooth.

Josh and his band will be seeing a lot more of the country this year hitting a lot of new places on his never ending tour. It’s still hard for him to believe he has come this far and he doesn’t take one mile of it for granted. “I never thought I would be rolling down the road with one of the hottest bands inTexas playing shows across the United States. I’m happy to be here.”

The Josh Ward band is Josh Ward (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Steve Cargill (bass), Travis Bishop (keys, organ, harmony vocals), Justin Cognito (drums), Rob Smith (lead guitar) and Cody Angel (steel guitar).

American history of blaming music...

Music is a wonderful thing, but it can also be used as a weapon. Over the years, each generation has recoiled upon listening to their kid's popular music.

In the late 40's and 50's, the rock and roll revolution started a rebellious trend among young people that some blamed for the problems of the day. The psychedelic music of the 60's started a rebellious trend among young people that some blamed for the problems of the day.

The punk rock music of the late 70's, the metal years during the 80's, rap music in the 80's and 90's, and whatever the garbage is that they have now, when a style of music would catch on, it was always exploited by the music industry and then the music world becomes flooded with garbage that gains more popularity than the musicians that defined those categories.

Every single generation is shocked by the music their kids listen to. Go back and listen to some of the popular music from your formative years and really think about the themes they push. Rebellion, partying, living to excess, shirking responsibility, rejecting authority...

And it's not just the music... Popular TV shows and even popular films have done the same thing. Think about some of the stuff that has popped up on TV over the years to influence young people to live like there's no tomorrow... Really think about it, I'm sure you can come up with a handful of examples from your generation, right?

These problems don't begin with the songwriters or the bands. These problems begin when the music industry identifies popular trends and exploits them. They bring young, talented bands in and give them big money to record "their" music, when in reality they're gently shaping their careers to make them into something they never were. But, they keep throwing money and whatever they want at them to keep them compliant and making the songs that top record executives know will sell, but end up shaping society into something we don't recognize...

Gary Kyle's 2018 tour aids New Braunfels based fundraising efforts

photo: Simone Nicole Photography
Nashville, TN - While Gary Kyle gears up for the spring release of his new EP “Rewind Blue,” the sequel to his 2017 acclaimed release “Rewind White,” the Houston singer/songwriter is taking this opportunity to partner with Operation FINALLY HOME, and use his 2018 tour to aid fundraising efforts for wounded, ill and injured men and women veterans in Texas. Select tour dates throughout the year will be designated events planned specifically for Operation FINALLY HOME and will be announced in advance on Gary’s website at garykylemusic.com

Based in New Braunfels, Texas, Operation FINALLY HOME was established in 2005 as a nonpartisan/nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. The mission is to provide homes and home modifications to America’s military Heroes and the widows of the fallen who have sacrificed so much to defend our freedoms and values. They partner with corporate sponsors, builder associations, builders, remodelers, developers, individual contributors, and volunteers to help these Heroes and families by addressing one of their most pressing needs – a place to call home. To date, Operation FINALLY HOME has over 240 custom-built, mortgage-free homes and home modifications that have been completed or in planning for America’s military heroes and the widows of the fallen.

Executive Director, Rusty Carroll, and Director of Donor Engagement, Katie Herries, were thrilled when they got a phone call from Gary Kyle asking how he could help. Gary is well versed on the topic of “giving to those in need” having started his own nonprofit effort along with his wife back in 2013 called the “Texas Strong Organization.” Similarly working community-by-community and choosing candidates by recommendations through their Facebook page, the Kyle’s work included everything from paying utility bills, supplying Christmas presents, providing plumbing and carpentry work, paying mortgages and car notes, and purchasing airline tickets to enable soldiers to come home and see their families. This life realization for the Kyle’s was immediate as Gary explains. “My gift is music, my calling is helping.”

Gary Kyle has no military background of his own, but he wears the sentiment “finally home” on his sleeve, having just returned to his native home of Houston weeks before Hurricane Harvey slammed southern Texas back in August with a devastating blow. His elation about being home again mixed with the despair his fellow Texans were experiencing stoked his altruistic fire once again, and after delivering an 18-foot box trailer filled with food and supplies to flood victims, Gary decided to continue on with that sentiment by dedicating his new EP release and the corresponding tour to helping our military veterans come “finally home.” Check garykylemusic.com for upcoming dates and community announcements on Operation FINALLY HOME and his new EP release “Rewind Blue.”

links:
operationfinallyhome.org
garykylemusic.com

Wurstplex Winter Jam 6!

Click for larger view
6th year, new name! Our primary beneficiary this year is Soldier Songs and Voices, plus Pink Warrior Angels and Callen Hughs Foundation as well!

Facebook events:
Friday, January 19, 2018 7pm
Saturday, January 20, 2018 NOON

Noon to midnight, LIVE MUSIC all day long! BEST BURGERS IN NEW BRAUNFELS from Freiheit Country Store, and pray our weather turns out as good as the past 5 years!

Full band performances by:
Jesse Stratton Band, The Lawless, Alli Mattice Band & Two Way Street

Two song swaps from Soldier Songs and Voices students

Acoustic performances by:
Dustin Welch, HALLEYANNA & Mark Jungers, Ryan Ross, Joe “The Jester” Congdon, Kori Free, Nate Rodriguez, Tony Taylor, Hannah Swan, Elisa Maria, Brittney Nemec, Austin Gilliam, Joel Hofmann, Dennis Jay, Larry Martin Sweeney, Anna McCormick and Paul Eldridge

AND a special Friday night pre party with Jason Allen & Gabe Garcia Full Band Duo plus BJ Thibodeaux & Backwater Blvd!

Special thanks to our sponsors Kora Kora Coffee, Comaltex Insurance Agency Inc, CalTex Protective Coatings, Freddy's Pawn & Jewelry, Popbelly's Popcorn, Bonzai Steak & Sushi, Gregersen Family Chiropractic, Naturally Cafe, The Purple Chair and as always produced by Music of New Braunfels and TX Citizen!


The name change:

FYI we used to be named Blowin' Off Steamboat Music Festival, but because that was a name chosen off the cuff 6 years ago at the VERY last minute when we planned the first year, we decided we finally needed our own identity! I don't know if anybody used the word "Wurstplex" prior to me creating the Music of New Braunfels website and adding it into the text in the site header, but the TX Citizen has also adopted it for their "Best of the Wurstplex" awards they started in 2017.

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