Author Archives: Adam Keyrouze

Austin= Country?

Here in Austin, country music is alive and well in so many different ways. Staying connected to your country roots and IMG_9052traditions I easily attainable. Whether you want to go out and enjoy live concerts, enjoy a nice meal at an authentic, southern-family style restaurant, or just stay inside your apartment/house and watch an awards ceremony. Austin is known for being weird but isn’t always thought of being country, instead being thought of more “hipster” due to the various celebrities and other events being held in the city.

IMG_2591The first experience I took advantage of was ACL, as I previously noted on one of my past blog posts, and I was able to attend Sturgill Simpson’s performance on Saturday of the first weekend of this music festival, as well as Dwight Yoakam’s performance.

Sturgill Simpson was outstanding and was one of my favorite performances of the weekend (and that’s saying a lot because I am also a huge fan of Drake and The Weeknd). While I didn’t see every second of most of the artists I was very pleased with my first time. It was a great way to see new country artists I wasn’t too familiar with as well as seeing other genres of music. It was so enjoyable it’s impossible to sum it up into such few words, so the video below is a small attempt just for you to get a sense of how great just ONE day was!

The next experience I chose to participate in was eating at an authentic historic site. I ate at the restaurant known as Threadgill’s. My family was in town for the weekend so we were looking for a place to eat right before they headed back to Dallas. I had the chicken fried steak with mashed potatoes and the broccoli rice casserole and it was fantastic. The chicken fried steak i was told was the best in Austin so I had to try it and so far it has been the best in Austin!

Chicken-Fried-Steak-AustinThe atmosphere was great, the service was great, and the food was great. The music was enjoyable while at the same time, you could still have a conversation with your family. Next time I go, I want to try their Sunday brunch special. My brother went that route which included an all you can eat breakfast. For the special they had a “salad bar” like station set up with all kinds of fruit and breakfast foods which looked delicious!

The last experience I have enjoyed here in Austin is actually quite simple and most people say “You can do that anywhere though”. While it is true that you can watch the CMA awards anywhere, I enjoyed it more here than in previous years because this was the first time I heard about people getting together and having a “watch party”. While the biggest headline this year was that Justin Timberlake stole the show with Chris Stapleton, what I remember about that night was enjoying with some close friends and enjoying the country artists be recognized for a great year in country music.

When I first moved to Austin, I never thought the country industry would influence my life this much due to the many country events held or viewed here. That has been a pleasant surprise this Fall semester and I only hope that I will be able to continue enjoying more experiences like these!


Filed under Blog Post 5, Reflection, Texas

From acting to country singer?

Most musical artists that actually have successful careers in the music industry focus solely on music and nothing else. This can be especially proven true for country artists due to not many artists being involved in other career jobs. Artists might find another similar job such as vocals coaches, backup roles in songs, or maybe judges for singing shows such as American Idol, but these other jobs almost all relate to the music industry.

h9EiF8ggJana Kramer finds herself separated in the category of starting in the career of acting and making herself relevant in the country music industry later on her life. Kramer started off in 2002 acting and appearing in small roles in hit TV shows such as All My Children, Grey’s Anatomy, and CSI:NY. One of her first big breaks was when she earned a recurring role in the show Friday Night lights which was a big hit on NBC. While she earned gigs in a lot of big shows, most being small roles in only a few episodes, her biggest breakthrough in acting was when she earned a larger role in the show One Tree Hill on the channel CW.

Not only did this role in One Tree Hill bring her into the spotlight in the acting industry, it brought her into the spotlight for her singing career. As the character Alex Dupree, she was initially introduced to be a model for another characters fashion line but as the show progressed, Alex Dupree started pursuing a musical career. Kramer appeared in season 7 in the second episode and her last episode was the seance episode in season 9. She left the show to pursue her musical career which sprouted directly from this show.

81XpdZ2Tz8L._SL1425_One of her first big songs was first premiered on One Tree Hill in February of 2011, which was named “I Won’t Give Up” and hit number 75 on the Billboards hot 100 chart. This was the beginning of her musical career which was catapulted by the tv drama.

Another song of hers, which is my favorite, is “Whiskey.” I heard about it from a friend who was a huge fan of the TV show, One Tree Hill, and I was in the car with her driving to get lunch one day and she played it and it instantly became one of my favorite songs (even though it is a girly song.) The melody and lyrics are so simple and catchy, I found myself wanting to listen to it over and over again. This was another song she premiered on One Tree Hill but it was later in April of  2011.

Jana Kramer’s musical career has taken off since she started her gig on One Tree Hill. Her first album was released in 2012 and was called “Jana Kramer.” Her next album was released on October 9th, of this year. While she isn’t a household country name yet, she has been gaining popularity and I think she’ll be a big name one day.


Filed under Blog Post 4, Movies and TV, Music Videos

Chesney still kickin’ it

b151f48f27201928232caa0be8f6d17bJUNE 4TH, 2016!!!!!!!!!! ARLINGTON, TEXAS!!!!!! FINALLY I GET TO GO!

At long last, I will finally have the opportunity to attend a live Kenny Chesney concert. Nash Country Weekly released this past week on Friday that Kenny Chesney will be hosting 11 stadium dates this upcoming summer, and the one stadium I’m most excited about is at AT&T stadium, aka “Jerry World”, in Arlington, which is only about 30 to 45 minutes from my hometown.

49811-thumb-266x266The Spread the Love summer 2016 tour is starting out on April 23 in Auburn, Alabama at Jordan Hare stadium followed by a performance at Chase Field in Phoenix on May 7th before finally coming to Arlington. The tour follows along the lines  with the same mantra as previous albums of his such as “No Shoes, No Shirt, No problem” and  “The Big Revival Tour”, of “a passion of living and loving music.

The tour will also consist of other popular country artists which will only draw bigger crowds to his performances (which is pretty unbelievable since his crowds have been record setting as of late.) The other featured artists are none other than Miranda Lambert, Sam Hunt, and Old Dominion. These artists will attract more viewers making the concerts even more popular to attend. Chesney has been breaking records lately like I mentioned earlier, such as “The Big Revival Tour” where Nash Country Weekly reported that he sold more than 1.3 million tickets.

kenny-chesney-stadium-concerts-2016-tourI’m so excited to finally be able to attend a Kenny Chesney concert. I have never been able to attend a concert of his because either I was out of town when he came anywhere close to where I lived, had another commitment, he didn’t tour anywhere closed to Dallas, or I was too young to fully appreciate country music. If this was freshman year of high school I would not be anywhere near as excited as I was when I found out about this tour on this past Friday.

I remember growing up as a kid sitting in my dads truck listening to Kenny’s album “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem” and liking it but not truly listening to it. It was the first country album I listened to because of my dad which is weird since he told me he used to not like country music. He told me he didn’t start listening to it until he moved down here to Texas from New York and after actually listening to it, the stereotype that he thought it was completely changed.

220px-NoShoesNoShirtNoProblems“No Shoes, No Shirt, No problem” will always be my favorite country album not only because it was good music, but because I will always think of how my dad and I became closer listening to it in the summers over and over again.

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Filed under Blog Post 3, Live Music, Texas

Country Music at ACL

After these past two weekends, I’ve heard the same question in almost every conversation, whether I was involved in the conversation or not.

“Did you see who performed at ACL this year?”

acl_music_festIf you are from Austin or anywhere close to it, you almost undoubtedly know what people are referring to when referring to “ACL”. It stands for Austin City Limits music festival and is one of the biggest events held in Austin all year. Before I started attending the University of Texas here in Austin, I never really knew much about it since I am from Fort Worth. Little did I know, how much fun it was and how big of an event it was for all music industries and artists.

This year I attended ACL for my first time and even though the price for a weekend wristband is ridiculous, it was well worth the price, even with the crowds and warm weather. I was very surprised at the variety of music genres present at the festival. What I didn’t realize was that country artists were just as popular as the headliners were this year. The big names I saw on the list were Drake, The Weeknd, and Foo Fighters and while the crowds were massive for them, the crowds were big for everyone.

Some of the country artists who performed this year were Dwight Yoakem and Sturgill Simpson. Compared to previous years this years artists aren’t as popular compared to some of the artists who have performed at ACL like George Strait, Reba McEntire, and Waylon Jennings. (Not that I was at any of these performances, since they were all before the year 2000.) I had heard of these two artists before but I didn’t know the name of their songs but still enjoyed them a lot!

80Sturgill Simpson was very entertaining and the crowd for him was just as big as many other artists at the show. As some bloggers and writers online noted, not many people were two-stepping to the music but it still turned out to be a popular show.

He showed his outlaw-ish charm and while his music doesn’t deal with topics rated for PG audiences, I did see some younger audience members in attendance. I didn’t realize that all ages came to ACL, especially for artists who didn’t exactly sing about sunshine and rainbows.

While Simpson and Yoakam’s performance might not be considered in the category of “Best Country Artist Performances at ACL History”, they were both good in my opinion. Some of the performances that would fall under that category would be:

  • Willie Nelson 1974
  • Garth Brooks 1990
  • Hank Williams Jr. 1980
  • George Strait 1982
  • Waylon Jennings 1985
  • Merle Haggard 1978

These are a few that some people have put in their top 10 under that category and watching some of the performances online, I would have to say they were very good.

My first ACL experience was great including artists such as Drake, Echosmith, Twenty One Pilots, The Weeknd, Disclosure, Dwight Yoakam, Sturgill Simpson, and many more! I highly recommend attending the event next year if you haven’t ever attended it before!


Filed under Austin, Blog Post 2, Concert, Live Music

Country Music how I see it

What is country music to you? Do you love it or are you a casual listener? Is the answer to that question a result of where you’re from or a certain community you are a part of? The one community that I identify with that has shaped my outlook on country music for the past four summers is my previous source of pay.

Zg1-2J6VFor my previous job, I lifeguarded at our local city pool since the summer after my junior year in high school. I enjoyed it very much not only because I had a lot of friends there but we also got to listen to music while we did our job. We had speakers that played music (when they weren’t broken) and we listened to mainly country music along with some pop stations. When I first started we were told of a couple of stations that we could not play but mostly had free realm of what radio stations, but over the years it was restricted to basically just country music stations. When I first started working I didn’t care too much for country if at all and would have preferred pop/ radio-friendly music hands down. The more I listened, the more it grew on me even though it was mainly the same five country songs all summer. While it made others hate it even more, I actually grew fonder of it. Country music is still not my favorite genre BUT I listen to it a lot now during the summer mainly and like going to concerts.

luke-bryan-country-girl-shake-it-for-meWe, also as a lifeguarding group, would go to country events and bars like Billy Bob’s, in Fort Worth, when artists played and had a great time. (Those of us who were old enough of course, since not all of us were 18.) We went to other country concerts at places like Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie, which was fun. A lot of different artists have performed there such as the Randy Rogers Band, Gary Allen, Pat Green, Easton Corbin, and many others. I bought my first pair of boots and Wrangler jeans for a concert at Lone Star Park.

Country-Girl-Shake-Me-Luke-BryanOver my summers at work, I must say one of the songs that sticks out to me the most is Country Girl (also known as Shake it for me) by Luke Bryan. It was a big hit my first summer lifeguarding and EVERYONE knew it because they played it SO much on the radio. The girls absolutely went crazy over it and this was one of the songs that really put Luke Bryan on the national stage and when the average country music fan first heard a song by him. Some of the people who didn’t like country music who I worked with even liked this song and was a song that started the current trend of country music that “isn’t country music” in some people’s eyes. While I admit that I’m still not a fan who knows all about country music, I agree that it is a different type of music compared to older songs. Along with Country Girl, other songs that I remember being overplayed on the radio were Drunk on you also by Luke Bryan and Honey Bee by Blake Shelton. While we always sang along when these songs came on, we always joked around about these songs because they were played so much but that is what made those summer days so memorable.



Filed under Blog Post 1