After a long travel day yesterday I got to wake up in Texas this morning…..sigh. It’s sure good to see the sun shining again after two weeks of pounding rain and the gray skies of Vancouver. I did what I always do when I come back …and that is to reacquaint myself. Call me crazy but I love driving down the freeways, they’re so big and wide, like driving your couch if it had a steering wheel and gas pedal, and headed into the new sunrise with the sunroof wide , listening to the red dirt poets of Texas on stations like ‘The Range’ 95.9 FM and of course the Texas blues ‘Texas Renegade Radio at 89.3 FM….depending on my lust for inspiration, these are the sounds of Texas that bring me back inside.
Red Dirt music is not country, it’s not western…it’s Texan, raw, poetic, lyrical, personal and somewhat strange until you understand the context, colloquialisms and inferences….it’s quaintly under produced and folksy….eat your heart out Kieth Urban. Texas blues is hard charging guitar and harmonica driven…think Stevie Ray Vaughn, Albert King and T-Bone Walker…distinctly different sound from Delta or Chicago styles…..hey….after all, it’s Texas…..you know you’re in for something good.
So I’m pulling in the driveway, my neighbors cleaning the pool, we talk, not about anything in particular, just the weather and if it’s going to be a good day to grill….that’s BBQ for the rest of you. Texans are like that, they don’t notice your new car or want to know where you’ve been, they’re just happy to see you. This is so refreshing for me after living in Canada where the conversations run like this…”What do you do?”….”How much did you pay for that car?”….”Where do you vacation”……and then they’ll run a litany of comparisons………gag…..so boring….so covetous, jealous, envious and impersonal…..kind of creepy after you’ve been away from it for a while…..so good to be in a place where people are more satisfied with their lives.