Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Texas Tornados...

This past weekend we saw the Texas Tornados at Gruene Hall. If you don't know this was a group that had the now deceased Texas legends Doug Sahm and Freddy Fender. Now guided by Doug's son Shawn the band still has a couple of legendary members Augie Myer and Flaco Jimenez. The Tornados have a rock/country/conjunto style of music that represents a great blend of the styles of music found in Texas. 

I think the last time I saw Augie in person was at the old Party Center in Nacogdoches sometime in the late 70s. Augie and Doug Sahm actually made a minor challenge in the mid 60s to the Beatles and their hit record success with several mid 60s hit records of their own pro-pulsed along by Augie's Vox organ. Since then Augie has been a member of Bob Dylan's band and has played with the Allman Brothers and Tom Waits. Those mid 60s hits have been evergreen often being used in movies and TV. He's 75 years old. 

Flaco is a legend and is known as the father of conjunto music. He is 76 years old and has played with the Rolling Stones, Ry Cooder and Dwight Yoakam. As I think about it I have seen many of the accordion greats now including the late greats Clifton Chenier, Boo Zoo Chavis, Rocking Dopsie, Rocking Sydney (the toot toot man) the still living but retired Queen Ida and many others such as C.J. Chenier, Buckwheat Zydeco, Yuri and Peter Tulloch.  

That's Jr. on vocals with Flaco. 

Shawn Sham is a great entertainer and maybe one of the youngest people to get his photo on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine with his dad at age 3 in 1968. That's Ernie on drums. 

Shawn and bass player Speedy Sparks. That looks like an early 1950s Fender bass. Probably worth as much as your house. 

Better bass photo, maybe not as much as your house but your car for sure. 
Good trumpet, did not get his name. 

Don't know this dude either. He was kind of a roadie guitar tech person but got up and played and sang real fine on a few songs. His guitar strap is made from a pattern we have used around here for clothing, furniture covering, amp grill covers and tattoos. 

I almost had a great photo of Cathy and Augie but wait a minute let's get Miguel in there.  

OK, now we are ready. Cathy recalls waiting tables at the Hot Biscuit in Nacogdoches late 1970s when Augie and band came in for a meal. She was their waitress. She did not ask if he recalled their meeting. He probably would have said he did as he was a gracious star very patient with fans.   

Miguel crosses one off the bucket list. A photo of him and Mary with Flaco. I did not expect Flaco to meet and greet as he seems a bit frail but he was there and the people love him. 

Ok, get out there and get some Tornados. Their reissue recordings have recently gone platinum in Europe so don't be unhip. Get to rocking. 


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