Larry Joe Taylor Fest 2019-Monday

| April 23, 2019 | Reply

Josh Grider

Story and photos by Mary Jane Farmer

It’s the 31st year for Larry Joe Taylor’s Texas Music Festival. Patrons, along with merchandise and food vendors, are setting up in just about every nook and cranny of Melody Mountain Ranch (Stephenville), sound crews are setting up on both the Allsups Stage, which is basically a solo/duo stage, and on the Bud Light main stage. Performers used the T-Birds Garage Pub stage Monday night, along with that tiny spot behind the bar.  Hard to see, but easy to hear that solo performer.

Monday night, it was Buck Fuffalo who sat in that behind-the-bar seat, playing a solo set for almost two hours, while inside the T-Birds stage area, Six Market Blvd, with its roots in Stephenville, worked with the sound crew to get it all right. The five-piece group closed out the night, following Josh Grider and his three-piece group.

Buck Fuffalo

Josh was his usual remarkable self, belting out his remarkable songs.

“I’ve got a pocket full of songs to play for you, and when we’re done, Six Market Blvd has a pocket full of songs to play for you, too,” he opened by saying. And he thanked The Ranch, 95.9, Fort Worth’s radio station for following him for so many years.

Grider played many of his well-known songs, his band behind him all the way. He has a dumbfoundingly great guitarist, stand-up/doghouse bass picker who plays on without ceasing, and a drummer who can kick it up or lay it down—whatever the song needs. Grider’s songs that have made it onto several charts include “One Night Taco Stand,” he said he co-wrote—to begin with— so he could go get something to eat. There’s the one that makes anyone who has lived in a small town remember those days —

Six Market Blvd (some of them)

“Smallest Town on Earth.” Other now-standards, “You Dream I’ll Drive,” “Good People,” and just don’t forget, ever, “Summer and Sixteen.”

Tuesday begins here about 3 pm, back in the T-Birds bar, with Randy Brown at the helm… and speaking of helm, Randy will have Steve Helms with him on one of the upcoming Bloody Mary Mornings. Then, it’ll all pass by the Allsups Stage, today only, and move straight on to the Bud Light stage. LJT always starts that off with presentation of the flags. On tap (pun intended) are LJT and his friends, Deryl Dodd, Wade Bowen, and yes, closing it down will be Pat Green.

One bittersweet surprise was the new remembrance wall back of the Allsups Stage, with large photos of those who have passed away since playing Texas Music Festival. The two that hit this music-lover were Guy Clark and Chuck Pyle. I had known Chuck longer than any other musicians of his stature… since 1974, when he played The Iron Tender in El Paso. And Guy Clark played Kerrville Folk Festivals so many times, when I was there as assistant to producer Rod Kennedy, I can’t count any longer. Plus he took me on a tour of his writing station when I visited Nashville in 1987. Such a kind person, both of them were. Kind and sweet. I’ll share some more photos throughout this week.

There’s still room for more folks here at Melody Mountain Ranch. Pack up a tent or your travel trailer, or like me, just get clean sheets for the Hippie Van, and come on.

Josh Grider

Bass Player with Josh Grider

Mr. Guitar Man, plays with Josh Grider

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