FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

It’s Raining Music Down in Texas

Not too many hands went up when Hadley Barrett asked who was here for their first rodeo, but I think folks were just being shy, jammed together hip to hip, toe to butt, up and down the aluminum bleachers of Rodeo Austin, all the way over to corner section UU, today’s winners of the Sonic sundae giveaway.

For the animals in the house it was a day of strange intensity, one horse diving head first into the dirt, another tumbling over the exit gate; bulls shaking off riders, barrel racers knocking over barrels. A calf who lay dazed for several awkward seconds after the rope came off its neck. Only a couple of sheep took it easy as if to insist that Sunday is a day of rest.

But it was Willie’s day to work, nevertheless, and the crowd was gathered for a homecoming.

Drummer Paul English was early to the set, taking his seat in the center of the round portable stage, waiting awhile for things to get started, then climbing down from his seat to check his iphone, maybe texting something like “hey, y’all comin?”

But the arrangements were more complicated than usual. There were two sections of seating at dirt level, which had to be set up with camping chairs, and a steel barricade to set the distance for a couple dozen stander-uppers. And since it’s a Willie homecoming, who knows how many friends and family were gypsying along to hang out around the insider section of dirt between the stage and the bucking gates.

So time flowed, but not too quickly, and soon enough everyone was on their feet to cheer Willie up the portable stairs to the portable stage where he took the front-man position next to son Lukas and the coolest looking guitar player you ever saw, a mystery man in black suit, dark glasses, and oversized hat who turned out to be flocking Johnny Depp.

Whiskey River warmed it up the way you handle a glass that’s just been served. You look into it, swirl it around, sniff it a little, and then you raise it to your lips. When Willie leads the band with Trigger, it’s like a double presence, the guitar having its quite independent interpretation of how things should sound.

Willie’s moment I thought was “Always on My Mind.” He and Trigger dug a blues groove together that made you feel deeply.

Used to be times when Willie would pick up an electric guitar for a song or two, but with Lukas standing there, he deferred to his son’s cover of “Raining Down in Texas.” And in the middle of that song there was a really cool guitar trio going on between Lukas, Johnny, and Willie. It would be nice to see that on youtube or hear an mp3. I hope they find a way.

Also a sweet duet with Lily Meola, reprising a duet she recorded with Willie, “Will You Remember Mine.” Let’s remember that one, too.

So many sing-alongs for the fans. Beer for my horses. Don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys. In love with a good timing man. May the circle be unbroken. I’ll fly away.

And finally a new sing-along. Roll me up and smoke me when I die. Willie’s got this corkscrew thing he does with his pointing finger. Smoke curling up to heaven.

Well, we usually like to hang out after the show and let the traffic beat us home, but today we’d had enough butt kicking from the big folks sitting behind us. We had to get out the door quick, just to keep the right memories in all the right places and let the wrong memories go.

Greg Moses writes about peace and Texas, but not always at the same time. He is author of Revolution of Conscience: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Philosophy of Nonviolence. His writings are archived at gregmoses.net and he can be reached at gmosesx@gmail.com

 

 

More articles by:

Greg Moses writes about peace and Texas, but not always at the same time. He is author of Revolution of Conscience: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Philosophy of Nonviolence. As editor of the Texas Civil Rights Review he has written about racism faced by Black agriculturalists in Texas. He can be reached at gmosesx@gmail.com

July 18, 2018
Ed Meek
Acts of Resistance
July 17, 2018
Conn Hallinan
Trump & The Big Bad Bugs
Robert Hunziker
Trump Kills Science, Nature Strikes Back
John Grant
The Politics of Cruelty
Kenneth Surin
Calculated Buffoonery: Trump in the UK
Binoy Kampmark
Helsinki Theatrics: Trump Meets Putin
Patrick Bond
BRICS From Above, Seen Critically From Below
Jim Kavanagh
Fighting Fake Stories: The New Yorker, Israel and Obama
Daniel Falcone
Chomsky on the Trump NATO Ruse
W. T. Whitney
Oil Underground in Neuquén, Argentina – and a New US Military Base There
Doug Rawlings
Ken Burns’ “The Vietnam War” was Nominated for an Emmy, Does It Deserve It?
Rajan Menon
The United States of Inequality
Thomas Knapp
Have Mueller and Rosenstein Finally Gone Too Far?
Cesar Chelala
An Insatiable Salesman
Dean Baker
Truth, Trump and the Washington Post
Mel Gurtov
Human Rights Trumped
Binoy Kampmark
Putin’s Football Gambit: How the World Cup Paid Off
July 16, 2018
Sheldon Richman
Trump Turns to Gaza as Middle East Deal of the Century Collapses
Charles Pierson
Kirstjen Nielsen Just Wants to Protect You
Brett Wilkins
The Lydda Death March and the Israeli State of Denial
Patrick Cockburn
Trump Knows That the US Can Exercise More Power in a UK Weakened by Brexit
Robert Fisk
The Fisherman of Sarajevo Told Tales Past Wars and Wars to Come
Gary Leupp
When Did Russia Become an Adversary?
Uri Avnery
“Not Enough!”
Dave Lindorff
Undermining Trump-Putin Summit Means Promoting War
Manuel E. Yepe
World Trade War Has Begun
Binoy Kampmark
Trump Stomps Britain
Wim Laven
The Best Deals are the Deals that Develop Peace
Kary Love
Can We Learn from Heinrich Himmler’s Daughter? Should We?
Jeffrey St. Clair
Franklin Lamb, Requiescat in Pace
Weekend Edition
July 13, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Brian Cloughley
Lessons That Should Have Been Learned From NATO’s Destruction of Libya
Paul Street
Time to Stop Playing “Simon Says” with James Madison and Alexander Hamilton
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: In the Land of Formula and Honey
Aidan O'Brien
Ireland’s Intellectuals Bow to the Queen of Chaos 
Michael Collins
The Affirmative Action Silo
Andrew Levine
Tipping Points
Geoff Dutton
Fair and Balanced Opinion at the New York Times
Ajamu Baraka
Cultural and Ideological Struggle in the US: a Final Comment on Ocasio-Cortez
David Rosen
The New McCarthyism: Is the Electric Chair Next for the Left?
Ken Levy
The McConnell Rule: Nasty, Brutish, and Unconstitutional
George Wuerthner
The Awful Truth About the Hammonds
Robert Fisk
Will Those Killed by NATO 19 Years Ago in Serbia Ever Get Justice?
Robert Hunziker
Three Climatic Monsters with Asteroid Impact
Ramzy Baroud
Europe’s Iron Curtain: The Refugee Crisis is about to Worsen
Nick Pemberton
A Letter For Scarlett JoManDaughter
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail