• Mary Jane Farmer & S.I.T Crew

The Scene In Town crew

Mary Jane FarmerMe by Gary Blackerby 2.19.16

Scene In Town — Owner, writer, photographer, musical event producer, booking agent, and more

Buddy Magazine —  Reporter

Overdrive Entertainment — Photographer

Choctaw Casinos (Durant and Grant, Okla.) — Photographer

Kerrville Festivals — Photographer

WoodyFest — Photographer

KHYI 95.3 — Former Photographer

TownSquare ExperitialFormer Photographer

Although she had volunteered and been around music festivals for several years before, Mary Jane Farmer jumped into the music business with both feet in 1980, when she accepted the position of assistant to Rod Kennedy, the producer for the world-wide acclaimed Kerrville Festivals in Kerrville, Texas.

It was a year-round, full-time job in which, during festivals, she was responsible for overseeing the 250 volunteers over 18 days of the big festival, and at several other events throughout the year, plus woking as each event’s business management, allowing producer Rod Kennedy the freedom to host the stage with ease. Together, the team also produced classical, bluegrass, folk, and country music festivals, and traveled and held festivals across Texas, the United States, and Mexico.

In 1986, Texas Governor Mark White invited Mary Jane to produce the state’s 7-stage, 2-day official Sesquicentennial Festival at San Jacinto Battleground State Park. She provided a representation of the music of every ethnic group that settled Texas, added superstars who made their home in Texas, and culminated that event by combining Willie Nelson and his band with the Houston Symphony.

Mary Jane has also been a booking agent and office assistant for several performers including Steve Young and Allen Wayne Damron;  reviewer of songs for Tompal Glaser’s studio in Nashville; and a record distributor (both independent and with Polygram Records), all while holding down “real” jobs, including delving into the newspaper reporting business.

In 2001, after moving (in 1996) from Kerrville to Grayson County, Texas, Mary Jane became the police and fire beat reporter for the Sherman Herald Democrat. Three years later, she and fellow reporter Ken Studer convinced the paper to begin publishing more about live music, hence the birth of the “Texoma Live Music Scene.”

“I sat at home between 1996, when I moved to Van Alstyne from the very musically-active Kerrville and the Texas Hill Country, until 2004, not knowing there was so much incredible music in the area,” Mary Jane said. “No one had a comprehensive listing of nightly events until then.” Creating a calendar, along with providing features, became a focus interest/passion for Mary Jane.

Studer left the paper, and Farmer kept up with the newspaper’s music scene until the paper shrunk, as newspapers are doing, and the “Texoma Live Music Scene” was dropped. Quickly, she established SceneInTown.com to take up the slack, not wanting to let the musicians and venues down.

After leaving the newspaper in August 2012, Mary Jane again began dedicating all her time to the music business, bumping up music news and the live music calendar on SceneInTown.com as one way of letting the public know just how much incredible talent there is out there. She began working again as an event promoter, and enjoyed producing the music stage at the Grayson County Fair (Texas), naturally called “The Scene In Town Stage.”

She is also an accomplished photographer, taking most of her own pictures. Mary Jane currently is  photographer for Overdrive Entertainment’s events in North Texas and southern Oklahoma; and numerous festivals and venues; Choctaw Casinos‘ national music concerts., Kerrville Festivals, back home where she started decades earlier, at WoodyFest in Okemah, Okla., and for Mountain Jam 2017 in Oklahoma.  Her pictures have also been used on several CDs; were published in East Texas Outdoors; in several books written by Vicki Penhall; and used for promo by countless musicians. She formerly was photographer for all KHYI events, Me, 2013including the Shiner Rising Star contests, Cooler’n Hell Fest, Rusty Wier songwriting contests, and Texas Music Revolution; and for Experiential’s Crude Fest in Midland, Texas.

2013 was an even-busier-than-usual year. February saw Mary Jane joining the reporting staff for Buddy Magazine, the oldest music magazine in Texas. In October, 2013, she began working with singer/songwriter Tony Ramey, as she had many years previously for singer/songwriter Steve Young and Allen Damron. She now books the live music for El Patio Escondido in Van Alstyne, and a portion of the Thursday night events at Hank’s Texas Grill in McKinney. And since Choctaw Casino in Durant has opened its Grand Theater, that venue is hosting concerts by more and more national touring musicians, and Mary Jane is keeping up with most of those for the casinos, including photographing the venue’s and bands’ Meet n Greets.

The online magazine, SceneInTown.com, is enjoying considerable success, as noted by the growing numbers of dedicated, repeat readers, many of whom return regularly to search its Live Music and Festival calendars, others for the feature stories and CD reviews, and many just for the numerous photographs.

Mary Jane Farmer, PO Box 1422, Van Alstyne TX 75495

903-814-8257

MaryJane@SceneInTown.com

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Angela Hightower

Angela Hightower

Angela Hightower

Angie may well be the world’s prime example of loyalty to jobs accepted. Angie works with the Live Music and the Music Festival calendars, doubling the number of entries in each day’s listing. She began working with Scene In Town.com in 2013, and has stayed diligently with it since Day 1, all while working her daytime job; working with her own travel agency Waves Travel; and volunteering for other entities, such as the Po Boys Picnics. She can be reached online at Angela@SceneInTown.com

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Billy Keith Bucher

Billy Keith Bucher

Billy Keith Bucher

Bucher has always been torn, and tenacious, between two paths: music and writing.

When he got to college, he split his time between publications and bands. He never really decided on a clear course. Out of college, Billy first accidentally fell into the San Francisco scene, where he played and also wrote about the experience. After that, he went to Vermont where he got to write for various literary magazines.
Back in Austin, Texas, Bucher began writing for music publications such as the Austin Sun and the Pawn Review, while he played with groups such as Eber and Ewing Street Times. In the Dallas area, he continued to write for Dallas Jazz and the Dallas Observer. He continues to spread his time between music and writing for magazines such as Scene in Town.
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Axton J. Deary

Axton J. Deary

Axton is currently based in Dallas, Texas. He attended college at Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas. It was there that Axton grew an affinity for music — with historical venues such Cheatham Street Warehouse, Gruene Hall, Joe T. Floore Country Store, and Luckenbach just a jump, skip, and stone’s throw away to see the best that Texas regional acts had to offer.

Although currently employed full-time in Dallas, he frequents Hank’s in McKinney, Love and War in Plano, Sundown at Granada in Dallas, Magnolia Motor Lounge in Fort Worth, and various venues scattered here and yonder as a weekend warrior. Axton currently pens album and concert reviews for Scene in Town. Axton is excited to be a contributor and is looking forward to the new journey.

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