Live Entertainment in Houston, TX

fh wcg band stage

American Aquarium Crowd Russell

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http://funthingstodo.io/houston-tx-fun-things-to-do/

May
4
Wed
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 4 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May
5
Thu
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 5 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May 5 Cinco De Mayo w/ 10 Year Sauce
May 5 @ 8:00 pm

10 Yr Sauce

IT”S A PARTY !!!!

Come celebrate with 10 Year Sauce.

10 Year Sauce is a new party band and project from several long time Texas musicians.

If you want to listen to a blend of classic rock, Motown, country and even a few other styles then bring your friends and come to the firehouse saloon on Oct 1.

Lead singer and veteran guitarist Blake Ratliff actually spent time touring throughout the south in a Motown and Gospel based band. If sweating were an Olympic competition he could proudly represent our country. He will also explain the story behind the name 10 Year Sauce at the show.

Bassist Shane Hildreth has toured all over with Owen Temple, Max Stalling and Phil Pritchett. Plus we think he actually may own some or all of the Astros. And Yeti Coolers.

Ty Hoffer on drums had played mainly in bands in Austin and Fort Worth. His project Change of Standard has received critical acclaim for their original releases on iTunes. He also has a great tennis serve.

Guitarist Art Valenzuela also plays in another project called Texxas Heat and style is heavily influenced by SRV. He can beat 97% of people in the world in arm wrestling.

Keyboardist Randy Wall plays in more bands that we have room to list. Most notably with Commercial Art, The Waltones and Dan Ackroyd. He is not an early riser.

I don’t know how good of a saxophone player you may be, except Jeff Magnus is better than you. He will also be playing. Come here him wail.

May
6
Fri
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 6 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May 6 Ray Johnston Band w/ Special Guest: Doc West
May 6 @ 9:00 pm

Ray Johnston Band
Ray Johnston

It doesn’t take more than a second or two after meeting country-rock musician Ray Johnston to figure out he’s one determined dude. Though his motto is “smile hard,” he seems to live by a more famous mantra: “Failure is not an option.”

Determination drove the lanky Montgomery, Ala., native to make good on his childhood pledge that he would one day play pro basketball; he wound up joining the Dallas Mavericks as a free agent in 2004. It’s what helped him turn his passion for music into his post-basketball profession, leading the Ray Johnston Band, which just completed a new album, AGAINST THE GRAIN. And most of all, it’s what kept him going as he battled leukemia. Five times.

If anyone has the right stuff, it’s Johnston. His focus, work ethic and winning attitude — and those bouts with cancerous blood cells — mean he doesn’t have time for mediocrity. Which is why he was able to attract top-notch talent for AGAINST THE GRAIN, and why he’s been able to book high-profile gigs, such as opening a huge SXSW 2012 show with Cracker, the BoDeans and Cheap Trick, even as an unknown just breaking in to the music biz. People believe in Ray Johnston because he believes in himself. This is a guy who admits, “I get kind of offended if people don’t like me,” and goes to the airport early when he travels because he makes a new friend every time.

“My dad taught me early in life that any successful business is going to come from a lot of relationships,” Johnston says while kicking back in an Austin B&B, his adorable Boykin spaniel, Lil Dude, snoozing next to him. A southern charmer with the kind of dimpled-chin good looks that led to some modeling during his athlete days, Johnston discusses his life and music in a conversation filled with references to sports, business, faith and friends — and success.

“Son, any successful business that has longevity has a point of difference,” his father, a high-risk insurance writer-turned cattle rancher, told him early on. Pondering how that axiom might apply to his music — what would make his rootsy songs stand out from the rest — Johnston came to a realization.

“I’ve always been a big fan of the adjective ‘authentic,’” he says. “I want to make sure whatever music I’m writing is me, and I’m not just tilting to make sure it fits the market.”

His pals Jason Mraz and Michael Franti assured him his evolution from a Jack Johnson/Dave Matthews sound to one more in league with fellow Texans Randy Rogers and Kevin Fowler was not an issue. Says Johnston of the band’s direction: “If Dave Matthews is on first base and Zac Brown is on third, we fall on second base.”

It’s as if they’re forming a bridge between what he calls “that happy rock sound” and a style that’s “current country, but less Nashville-sounding.” There’s some grit ground into these grooves, roughing up the edges and keeping everything real.

Produced by Ken Tondre, Fowler’s drummer and music director, AGAINST THE GRAIN features contributions from guitarists David Grissom (John Mellencamp, the Dixie Chicks) and David Pulkingham (Alejandro Escovedo); bassist Glenn Fukunaga (Robert Plant); fiddler Haydn Vitera (Asleep at the Wheel); and drummer Brannen Temple (Janet Jackson), among others. Johnston’s bandmates Bobby Sparks and Keith Anderson contribute keyboards and saxophone, respectively.

They’ve helped create a versatile mix of tracks, from the sweetly reminiscent country-pop of “Me, You & Emmylou,” and the testosterone growl of “Gameday,” the ESPN College Gameday song Johnston co-wrote with Thom Shepherd (Kevin Fowler, Pat Green) to Johnston’s moving ballad, “Son, This Is Your Dad.” The catchy opening cut, “Bye Bye City Lights,” was written by Johnston and AGAINST THE GRAIN co-arranger Lang Freeman, vocalist/guitarist for Austin’s Sounds Under Radio, whose songs have landed everywhere from the Spiderman 3 film to the Vampire Diaries TV series.

Another track, “Supernatural,” has been re-recorded with an extra verse for an upcoming ad campaign for Be The Match, the national bone marrow transplant registry and advocacy group. Johnston, who received a life-saving marrow transplant in 2008, is now a Be The Match spokesman and recently was invited to Washington, D.C., to speak to U.S. senators on behalf of the organization. He got to meet his donor, an experience he’s not ashamed to admit drew some tears.

“When you see your mom huggin’ the donor and thanking him for saving her son’s life, that’s a pretty special moment,” Johnston reflects.

“People ask me all the time, ‘Are you successful?’ Shoot, if my band flops and goes under, I think I’m successful just for doin’ that,” he says of his work with Be The Match.

But “flops” and “goes under” are concepts that barely exist in Johnston’s lexicon; they’re dwarfed by that far more important “S” word.

Clearly, Johnston’s success is directly linked to his positive attitude. Asked where it comes from, he credits his parents. His dad didn’t tolerate sulking. His mom had a bumper sticker that read, “Tough times don’t last — tough people do.”

While majoring in marketing at the University of Alabama, he tried out for the Crimson Tide as a walk-on — and made it. Though he played in only two games, he went for an NBA slot anyway. He didn’t make it, so he headed to Dallas.

“I just moved to a city that I thought would provide the highest chance of getting a job, with the idea, ‘I’ll give this two years. If it doesn’t work out, I’ll come back and work for my dad.’”

He was hired as a mortgage broker — right when interest rates dropped and property refinancing jumped. Then he got into commercial lending, and did very well. Of course, he still played ball — pickup games at a club where he got to know Dallas Mavericks players. That led to tryouts and his eventual signing as a point guard. Sadly, it would be only a few months before a pickup-game shin injury that wouldn’t stop hurting landed Johnston in the emergency room. Within 24 hours, doctors had placed him in a coma to begin battling the leukemia they discovered attacking his body. When they woke him up 71 days later, he learned he’d almost bled to death, had seven fewer toes and would never play pro ball again.

As he fought to heal, Johnston refocused his dreams. He spent countless hours practicing guitar, sought counsel from respected friends and developed a plan. After his third relapse, Johnston decided it was time to act. He asked Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who also co-owns AXS TV (then HDNet), if he’d be interested in documenting Johnston’s efforts to break into the music business and fight his illness. Cuban signed on, and the band went on tour.

The documentary, Ray Johnston Band: Road Diaries, became an eight-part series, plus a one-hour retrospective, chronicling his musical and medical journeys, including a fourth relapse. It got nominated for the CableFax Association’s 2009 Best Show or Series: Documentary award.

It wasn’t always easy having cameras in his face as he suffered the effects of chemotherapy, Johnston admits, but he learned to trust producer Evan Haiman.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the show,” Johnston says.

He’s proud of his new album, too.

“I love where our sound is now,” Johnston enthuses. “It’s a we thing, not a me thing.”

But he says the Ray Johnston Band’s biggest strength is performing live.

“If you’re confident in your craft and your band and your songs, then that feeds to the audience,” Johnston says. “They buy in immediately. We’ve gotten invited back to 95 percent of the venues where we’ve played.”

Of course, he’s already got a long-range plan.

“Our goal by the end of 2013 is to sell out the Dallas House of Blues big room,” he says. “And then by December 2015, we need to sell out the Verizon Theatre, which is the best-sounding room in Dallas. I’d like to do the Austin City Limits Festival by 2016 — as one of the people they’ll list when they say, ‘Get your tickets now — Coldplay’s comin’, Michael Franti’s comin’, Ray Johnston’s coming.’

“Laugh now,” he adds, “but I’ll put my band and our sound up against any of those guys, as far as the market enjoying it and having a great concert experience.”

With his talent and drive — and will to survive and thrive — there’s no reason to believe he won’t pull off his ultimate musical goal: playing Dallas’ American Airlines Center by 2022.

In Ray Johnston’s world, giving up is not an option.

May
11
Wed
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 11 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May
12
Thu
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 12 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May 12 Drink of Ages show featuring: Will Carter Band
May 12 @ 8:00 pm

drink of ages beer glass

This show features craft beer and live music each Thursday Night starting at 7 pm. The show airs Friday on ESPN then Sunday at 8 pm on Badlands Radio.

Get more information at: Drink of Ages Website

Will Carter Band

So much country music today chases images of imaginary love stories leading to fairytale and film worthy lyrics. Country nights in a pickup truck down the back roads of your hometown tell the real tales of growing up for the Texas native and southern bred Will Carter. Growing up in a small town with a deep passion for music, Will Carter has been chasing his own dream down many roads for a long time. His father was his biggest supporter from the very beginning. After losing his father at the very early age of 13, Will Carter developed an unstoppable motivational drive to continue to pursue his dreams. He’s telling his story with a voice that’s turning complete strangers into life-long listeners.

Will Carter was hired at the age of 18 as a lead vocalist for the legendary dancehall band from Texas, The Emotions. During his tenure with the Emotions he played festivals and dancehalls all over Texas. “It was a sincere honor to be a part of the vastly popular band that I grew up idolizing. I learned a great deal of how to put on a high energy show and capture and hold the attention of audiences of all sizes” says Carter.

After graduating from Texas A&M University, Will Carter decided to pursue original music. He has since had charting singles on both Texas and Nashville radio. Will Carter has a very high energy live show that combines rock star stage presence with catchy, groovy tunes. Will Carter has brought his show to dancehalls and festivals all over the south region of the US as well as major events such as CMA Fest in Nashville, the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, National Football League, Houston Texans, and the JJ Watt Foundation. 

Will continues to keep his voice healthy by taking lessons with renown vocal instructor, Tom McKinney. With more than 40 years as performer and voice teacher, Tom McKinney has trained many award winning singers including Mario, Demi Lovato, Ray J, Solange, and American Idol finalists. Tom also served as the New Talent Development Vocal Technique Instructor for Beyonce and Mathew Knowles’ recording and publishing company, Music World, in Houston.

Growing up on a self-sustaining farm in the rural town of Frydek, Texas, Will Carter learned the value of hard work and dedication at a very early age. “I’ve always been the wild one, and came up in a fast paced 24/7 work hard, play hard environment,” Carter says. “For me, it’s always been about working hard, making music and hanging with my people. This is what you’ll hear about when you listen to my album.”

With this attitude comes the conversational style found on Will Carter’s album. This voice will not go unheard.

May
13
Fri
Happy Hour 5 – 7 pm
May 13 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

JIP-Garoni-Wedding-472

Enjoy drink specials during Happy Hour in this one of a kind, rustic venue always owned and operated by firefighters.

May 13 Wade Andrew Smith and Driftwood
May 13 @ 8:00 pm

Wade Andrew Smith
Wade Andrew Smith and Driftwood

I have to thank my father for taking me to the Wynona Theater back in 1964 on Main St. in downtown Tomball, Texas to see the movie “Your Cheatin’ Heart”. That’s where it all began. The story of Hank Williams to this day still hangs around in the back of mind along with all of those songs on the album my dear mother bought me at the local grocery store. I ran the needle through that album, wrote down the lyrics on a Big Chief tablet and learned the chords to every song on an old acoustic guitar bigger than me. My father also picked and sang with the owner of the local Western Auto, Sonny Wilcox. I grew up listening to Hank, Merle, George, Johnny and Roger Miller to name a few. I grew up on a farm and experienced the country life where my father would drive back and forth to Houston everyday to provide us with the things necessary for that lifestyle. I learned how to drive in a Chevy pickup he bought at Ford’s Chevrolet. Our old frame house on twenty three acres had everything including a three wheel John Deere tractor. Baby calves and young colts were fed from a bottle. Klein High School FFA would come to our house on field trips to see what real farm life was like. Saturday night dances at Spring Creek Park and Tin Hall listening to Bud and Bud the Hooper Twins and my parents square dancing at the old Humble camp were a common practice. I remember riding my horse bareback down the side of the road singing Dang Me, Hang Me. I’m not officially a songwriter yet, maybe the ideas and memories of past life experiences will someday come out in a song.

You see this band Driftwood was started back in October of 2007. It’s just something I dreamed of doing for a long time. Before that I sang with a local band in LaPorte, Tx. Many thanks to George Dyer for giving me my start on stage. In addition to that I want to thank all the musicians that I have had the pleasure of sharing the stage with. I have learned something from each and every one of you. Thank you. Thanks to all the songwriters and Stormy Cooper and Lyndon Hughes at SC Media for a stellar CD. I also thank God above for allowing me to follow my dreams and passion and sending me my darlin’ wife who supports me 100% and is my biggest fan!

So, although my history does not include songwriting and years of playing on stage, the boys of Driftwood and I will continue to provide our audience with great dance music and do what we love to do; make people dance!

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