Friday, March 26, 2010

Houston Marchman

Our old friend, the singer and songwriter Houston Marchman came by KNON this afternoon. I hadn't seen him since we moved from the old White House Of East Dallas, about six years ago. Houston's looking and sounding good after all these years. He was always one of the best of the local singer/songwriters, with a strong, commanding voice, excellent guitar playing, and interesting songs. His singing, playing and new songs are as powerful as ever.

After some opening conversation and catching up with Mark Mundy, he launched into a new song, "Stones":

The on-air interview was really a conversation between old friends, as Mark and Houston go back a ways. I've edited these videos down a bit for the sake of brevity, and present for you now the next song Houston did, "Detroit":

As usually happens on the Friday edition of the Renegade Radio show, friends arrived to sit in as the show progressed. The Monday host Texas Trevor was there, then friends Mark Ivey and Michael Williams showed up. A little later our friend and the substitute DJ David Besonen arrived. At last our good old friend John Bass arrived, rounding out the group of in-studio guests & helpers.

Houston's last song of the day was the great old song "Wrong Side Of Del Rio", from his 2000 CD "Tryin' For Home":

After he finished playing, Houston had to rush off to the sound check. He's opening for Billy Joe Shaver tonight at the Granada Theatre here in Dallas. The rest of us descended to the parking lot for a couple rounds of beers, some peanuts, and a lot of great conversation. For some of us, this is the only time our wives let us out of the house unescorted, so we have to make the most of it.

Official website of KNON:

Houston Marchman's websites:

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Shannon McNally

What a treat to have Shannon McNally come by the station yesterday. She showed up with her full band, all their equipment, and the icing on the cake, her baby daughter Maeve. We'd been playing her previous CD, "Geronimo" for awhile, and her latest, "Coldwater" just came in the mail last month. From the CDs, I liked the songwriting, singing, and production, so I knew she'd be in the groove live. She and her band did not disappoint. After the briefest of introductions, they launched into "Bohemian Wedding Prayer Song":

Little Maeve was having a good time during the music. She was doing her best to be a part of the show. I really enjoyed it when she came over and hung on Mama while she was singing, vocalizing, and matching feet. How precious!

The band was great, and they were as follows: playing lead on one of the coolest guitars I've ever seen was Eric Deaton, keeping time on the drums was Wallace Lester, and securing the bottom end was Nathan Robbins on bass guitar. The next song was "Lovely":

I've got to hand it to Shannon for her songwriting, and most especially for her singing. She has a strong voice to begin with, and controls and modulates it beautifully.

The next song they performed was a cover of "Lonesome, Ornery, and Mean", and I'd like to present it for you here, but, this is about the time my video camera battery died, my old nemesis. I recharged the battery while they played this number, and was ready to go when they started the final song of the set, "Jack B. Nimble":

So, there you have it, another excellent in-studio performance from a great band. They were all very friendly. Shannon and her daughter Maeve were especially charming. They were in town to do a show the following night at the internationally famous Sons Of Hermann Hall. Between that show and this live radio set, Shannon was going to drive down to Austin for a showcase at the SXSW Music Conference, then drive back to Dallas that afternoon. What a hectic schedule, but that's a musician's life. Presenting the music is the easy part. It's all that driving between shows that wears you down.

Official website of KNON Radio in Dallas, Texas:

Shannon McNally's websites:, and

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Miss Izzy Cox

Miss Izzy Cox came by the KNON studio last Friday, March 5, 2010. I saw her in the parking lot as I arrived, unloading a trunk full of stuff. Hers is an equipment intensive operation. In addition to her guitar, she had a small amplifier, and a kick drum made from an old overnight suitcase.

I helped her get her equipment up to the studio, and she set about getting ready for the interview.

A friendly and interesting gal, she proved to be a good interview, and a dynamic performer. Her music seems to be all over the map, stylistically. The first song she did "Bad Bad Woman" was an upbeat rockabilly number. She followed this with "Devil Devil" and finished up with "Jesus Can You Save Me". So, in the course of twenty minutes, she went from being a Bad Woman, down to Hell, and all the way back up to Heaven.

Izzy was in town to do a show at the Allgood Cafe in Deep Elum later that night. She had with her her two latest CD releases, "Love Letters From The Electric Chair" and "Killing My Kind". As you can probably tell from these titles, most of her material is edgy and pretty dark. I bought a copy of each of these from her, and listened to them over the next few days. I must say that they are pretty good. I liked most of the songs on both of the records, and that's saying a lot.

Here are the videos of her in-studio performances:

"Bad Bad Woman"

"Devil Devil"

"Jesus Can You Save Me"

Official Website of KNON Community Radio in Dallas:

Official Website of Miss Izzy Cox: