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Miss Tess and the Talkbacks

Tue, October 25 / 730 PM

Online tickets sales end at 5 PM on the day of the show!

The Village Voice calls Miss Tess and the Talkbacks the perfect instance of “Nashville meets Brooklyn”. With their honey-coated vocals and edgy prowess, it’s an apt description of the quartet. 

Miss Tess backs up the wry wit and 1940s glam with a solid backbone of musical talent, drawing comparisons to everyone from Patsy Cline to Tom Waits to Bette Midler

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Game Night - Irish Session

Wed, October 26 / 730 PM

Board games are hot right now — whether it’s the new Euro-style games like Settlers of Catan, Carcassonne, 7 Wonders or Power Grid, or you’re kickin’ it old school with traditional games like the Trumpesque, land-grabbing Monopoly. For a great midweek diversion, head on over to the Mucky Duck for a pint and a little tabletop competition; they’ve been at it for almost 25 years. We checked in with Stevie Hazlewood, day manager for McGonigel’s Mucky Duck, and she says the club stocks a nice selection of titles for the Wednesday night Game Night and Irish Session. 

“It runs the gamut from Connect Four, to Scrabble, Yahtzee, Risk, three different versions of Monopoly, Scattergories, Cards Against Humanity,” says Hazlewood. Play one of those games or bring your own, and scarf down pub snacks like fish and chips, Welsh rarebit and the club’s famous shepherd’s pie. 

Best of all, there’s no cover. 7:30 p.m. 

By Susie Tommaney - Houston Press

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Q and A

Thu, October 27 / 7 PM

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QandA is a Houston band, their music is written and recorded in Houston, and they sound their very  best at McGonigels Mucky Duck.  Their third album, Goldfish in a Glass,  was released in January and people are saying nice things about it. 

“I was really mesmerized by this.  The writing, the playing, all of it really came together.” – Sandy Weinmann, Host of KPFT- FM’s Deadbeat show

“QandA sounds better than ever.  The new CD is great.” – Roark Smith, Host of KPFT- FM’s  “Wide Open Spaces”

QandA are musical mutts equal parts true Texan,  tough talking Yankee, Latin lover, rocker, singing-songwriter, and groove-slinging purveyor of funkadelic Americana.  The band will have you dancing in your seat, whooping and hell-yeahing, singing along, and wiping away a choked up tear all in the same show.

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High Plains Jamboree

Thu, October 27 / 930 PM

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It’s been said that High Plains Jamboree is a bluegrass band west of the Mississippi and a country band east of the Mississippi. 

The songs of mandolin player Brennen Leigh have been recorded by country stars Sunny Sweeney and Grammy winner Lee Ann Womack. Leigh has a cult following in Scandinavia, and has performed and recorded with the likes of Charlie Louvin, Robbie Fulks and Jim Lauderdale. 

Fiddler Beth Chrisman brings her award winning songwriting (Independent Music Awards “Country Song of the Year”) to the band. While a member of the Carper Family, Chrisman performed on Mountain Stage and A Prairie Home Companion. In the past, she has worked with Alice Gerrard, John C Reilly, James Hand and The Heartless Bastards.

Guitarist Noel McKay was discovered by Guy Clark in 1993 while performing at the Jimmie Rodgers Festival in Kerrville, Texas. Clark and McKay’s co-write “El Coyote” went on to win a Grammy for “Best Folk Album.” 

Bassist and old time banjo player Simon Flory performed throughout the mid south with his mentor, bluegrass legend Donny Catron (Tennessee Gentlemen, Jesse McReynolds, Doyle Lawson). He also studied and taught at Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk Music.  

While each musician’s resume is impressive in its own right, this new collaboration between long time friends has already gained national and international attention.

“High Plains Jamboree brings to the stage everything that we love about folk and roots music: a beautiful tapestry of homespun lyrics, instrumentation, and high lonesome harmonies.” –Jenni Finlay, Jenni Finlay Promotions, Eight 30 Records

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Junior Brown

Fri, October 28 / 7 PM930 PM

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With his unique voice, more unique song writing, and even more unique double necked “Guit-Steel” guitar, there has absolutely never been ANYONE like Junior Brown. He’s the American Original. Born in 1952 in Cottonwood, Arizona, Junior Brown showed an affinity for music at an early age when the family moved to a rural area of Indiana near Kirksville. In the following years, Junior began to experience Country music and remembers it as “growing up out of the ground like the crops – it was everywhere; coming out of cars, houses, gas stations and stores like the soundtrack of a story, but Country music programs on TV hadn’t really come along much yet; not until the late fifties.” Discovering a guitar in his grandparent’s attic, he spent the next several years woodshedding with records and the radio. Junior was also able to tap into music he couldn’t hear at home which older, college aged kids were listening to. This was possible due to his father’s employment at small campuses throughout the next decade as the family moved twice again. As a young boy he was able to experience the thrill of performing before live audiences, at parties, school functions even singing and playing guitar for five thousand Boy Scouts at an Andrews Air Force Base jamboree; then while still a teenager, getting the chance to sit in with Rock and Roll pioneer, Bo Diddley. Armed with this broad spectrum of influences, he began to develop a storehouse of musical chops.

Early on, Junior realized he had to keep his interest in Country music a secret; “it was like a secret friend I carried around, being careful not to tell anyone (especially girls) about my love for it because I thought they would laugh at me.” It wasn’t until the late 1960’s that Junior Brown would proudly explore the passion for the music he had loved since his early childhood in Indiana. With many prominent figures as his inspiration (Country legends, some who he would work with years later), he spent his nights in small clubs across the southwest. “I played more nights in honkytonks during the Seventies and Eighties than most musicians will see in a lifetime… I did so many years of that, night after night, four sets a night, fifteen minute breaks; I mean after that, you’ve gotta get good or you gotta get out. The early 1970’s California Country dance club scene was particularly competitive, but I learned professionalism and stage demeanor which has served me well to this day.” More recently however, Junior has shown himself to be equally adept at a wide variety of American music styles beyond Country. These include Rock and Roll, Blues, Hawaiian, Bluegrass and Western Swing.

There is a dependable consistency in Junior’s writing style (he writes nearly all his material) yet he’s always full of pleasant surprises. Though Junior always knew he could sing and play what he wanted, he had yet to explore his potential as a songwriter. “I realized no one was going to walk into a club and discover me…so I started hanging out with some songwriters who I’d played some jobs with, and they showed me how to support myself by writing and publishing.” With his writing coming together by the mid-Eighties, Brown upgraded his gear in a way that no artist had ever done. Struggling through each show, going back and forth plugging and unplugging guitar to steel guitar while singing, he had a dream one night about the two instruments mysteriously melding into one. The result was Brown’s unique invention, the “Guit-Steel”, a double necked instrument combining standard guitar with steel guitar. Built by Michael Stevens of Stevens Electric Instruments, the Guit-Steel allows Junior to switch instruments quickly in mid song while singing. According to Brown, his guitar and steel guitar playing became more his own around this time, with less imitation of others and more his own original ideas and licks. This maturation coincided with the development of a completely “Junior Brown” style of songwriting which employs subtle dry wit to some songs – others can be more overtly humorous, or just plain dead serious; like his playing, there is a wide range of styles that when combined can only spell Junior Brown.

In the early nineties Brown and his band (including wife Tanya Rae) relocated to Texas to the active Austin music scene and landed a weekly gig at the Continental club. Having worked as a sideman for many of the Austin-based acts over the years, Junior was already well familiar with the town. His unique and entertaining combination of singing, songwriting, instrumental and production skills led to a seven record deal with Curb Records that began with “Twelve Shades of Brown” in 1993. He later released two albums on the TelArc label. There were several Grammy nods, a CMA (Country Music Association) award for “My Wife Thinks You’re Dead”, movie and repeated TV appearances like Letterman, Conan, Saturday Night Live, Austin City Limits, SpongeBob, X Files, Dukes of Hazzard, Me Myself and Irene, Tresspass, Still Breathing, Blue Collar Comedy Tour 1 and 2, and more recently, Better Call Saul. And there were the Ad Campaigns; The Gap, Lee Jeans and Lipton Tea. As Junior became more well known, he began to collaborate on projects with some of his heroes. These include a duet with Ralph Stanley for which Junior received a Bluegrass Music Association Award (IBMA), a duet and video with Hank Thompson, as well as duets with video and record collaborations with the Beach Boys, George Jones, Leon McAuliffe, Ray Price, Leona Williams, Lynn Morris, Lloyd Green and Doc Watson. He even played guitar for Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys in a radio commercial.

Junior is currently finishing up recording on his latest album, “The American Original”. Release date is slated for mid-summer 2016. Junior’s performance on the promotional song, “Better Call Saul” was recorded and released both as a video on AMC as well as a flexible 33 1/3rd vinyl record included in the show’s box set from Season One. Junior, Tanya Rae and the band continue to tear up the highways and no doubt will be appearing in concert near you one of these days. Seeing Junior live is a definite must, so GUIT WITH IT ’cause he’s THE AMERICAN ORIGINAL!

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Bill Kirchen & Austin De Lone

Sat, October 29 / 7 PM

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CD release tour for “Transatlanticana” on Red House Records

Grammy nominated guitarist, singer and songwriter Bill Kirchen is one of the fortunate few who can step onto any stage, play those trademark licks that drove his seminal Commander Cody classic Hot Rod Lincoln into the Top Ten, and elicit instant recognition for a career that has spanned over 40 years and includes guitar work with Nick Lowe, Emmylou Harris, Doug Sahm, Elvis Costello and many more. 

Named “A Titan of the Telecaster” by Guitar Player Magazine, he celebrates an American musical tradition where rock 'n' roll and country music draws upon its origins in blues and bluegrass, Western swing from Texas and California honky-tonk.

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Ruby and the Rogues

Sat, October 29 / 930 PM

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Singer/songwriter/guitarist, Ruby Rendrag, was born at Ochsner to a Houma Indian Mother and a banjo playing, West Virginian Father. 

Ruby has been a part of the New Orleans music scene for 15 years performing as a solo artist and as a side woman with many local acts. She lives a life immersed in music. 

As manager of Music Shed Studios, she helps local, national and international artists plan and execute their recording projects. 

She infuses Ruby & The Rogues with lyrical immediacy, a percussive guitar style and her bluegrass-Led Zeppelin-80’s underground influences.

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Open Mic

Mon, October 31 / 630 PM

Enjoy folk, country and acoustic renditions by performers that spent their afternoon in classes at Rice or a long day at the office.

Although less common, other performers such as comedians, poets, jugglers and mimes are also welcome.  -

Sign up at 6pm. Music begins at 6:30

No Cover.