Monday, October 6, 2014

From The Redneck Road Dogs
by Brenda Kippa

It's time to tell you good people about some places to go to for some
fine music when you're in the mood. Hopefully you already know that
music offers us not only a lot of good fun, but also a real, genuine
healing – whether we need it or not.

First of all... almost every little town in East Texas has a festival
once a year. It might be in the spring, or in the heat of the summer,
or maybe in the early cool days of fall. They'll close off the
streets, haul out the craft booths, put on some good food, and hire a
band or two.You might have to take your own chair, but no matter – GO!
While the weather is Texas-wonderful, get out and see what the people
in neighboring town have to offer. It'll probably be a grand

Down in Tyler, we've found that Stanley's BBQ, across the street from
the big hospitals, can always be depended on for great music. The
award-winning food isn't too shabby, either (just kidding – it's the
best!) Stanley's is the venue where we began our “Road Dog” adventure
on the night that we first saw Uncle Lucius. Since then, we've been
back many times and have never been disappointed. The laid-back
atmosphere is perfect for enjoying live music.

Also in Tyler, right across from the town square, check to see what's
going on at the Liberty Theatre. They book some of the best
entertainment out there. It's where we caught the legendary Marcia
Ball recently. The seats are comfortable and the fully restored
building is lovely. The raised stage is huge, allowing the best
lighting for the program. Going to The Liberty is an event all by

Down in South Tyler,  Coaches and Cowboys has been booking some great
talent. They're mainly a dance venue, so consider showing your own
moves (or watch the other dancers) if you go on a night when no one is
booked to perform. The food is great at Coaches, and it's connected to
Cowboys by an open-air gaming area.

In Ben Wheeler, there are two places to go: The Forge and Moore's
Store. We've written about both of these venues, and regular readers
of our Redneck travels know that Ben Wheeler is our very favorite
destination. For atmosphere, excitement and engaging talent, they're
hard to beat, and the story of the town itself is pure inspiration.

'Way up north, across the Oklahoma border, you'll find Idabel. It's no
farther to drive up there than it is to drive to Dallas, and there's
minimal traffic on the way. Once you arrive, the Choctaw Casino might
surprise you. They book talent on Fridays and Sarurdays, and it's
usually at no charge. It's a cozy venue, nestled at the back of the
casino, and you can have a light dinner while you enjoy the music.

Last, but never least, is “Big D”. Dallas is only 90 miles away, it's
an easy trip if you don't try to do it too often. (This old Road Dog
drove it every day for the last two and a half years of her
employment). Thankfully, Dennis is the Alpha Road Dog when it comes to
getting us in and out of Dallas these days. He has found an easy
“northern route” when we go in to Plano, McKinney and Denton. In
Plano, we like Love and War; in McKinney, we like Hank's, and in
Denton, we like Dan's Silverleaf and another Love and War. All of
these places are well worth keeping an eye on for an evening of fun,
food and live music.

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