A Gruene Hall tradition, now in its 21st year, where hipsters, oldsters, suits, locals and drifters mix it up to start their weekend rite (pun intended!) Come enjoy the quintessential Friday happy hour with great beer prices, prize giveaways and the best in Texas tunes broadcast live by KNBT 92.1 FM Radio New Braunfels. There’s even a very special guest interview each week. Some that have stopped by for a chat have included Ray Benson, Steve Earle, Delbert McClinton, Radney Foster, Hayes Carll and Ray Wylie Hubbard. Good times!
While working at a pawn shop in Austin, Joe Lewis first picked up the guitar. Shortly thereafter, he immersed himself in the local Red River blues/garage scene, recording and performing with Austin luminaries such as the Weary Boys and Walter Daniels. Upon the release of the 2005 Brian Salvi produced Black Joe Lewis and The Cold Breeze EP with standout track “Bitch I Love You” featuring Matt Hubbard on Rhodes electric piano and the 2007 album Black Joe Lewis, the band gained critical national acclaim and toured as openers for Spoon and Okkervil River in 2007. Their debut album Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is! was released on March 17, 2009 and was produced by Spoon’s drummer Jim Eno. Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears have performed at music festivals including Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Music Festival, Bonnaroo, Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and more. The band has appeared on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Late Show with David Letterman, and Austin City Limits. In 2017, his latest album, Backlash, debuted at number 3 on the Billboard Top Blues Albums Chart. In 2018, Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears returned with their most subversive record to date. The Difference Between Me & You was influenced by Lewis’ first decade on the road, embodying a deep repertoire of sounds. It draws from the heavy grooves of Albert King, the punked-up blues of R.L. Burnside, the storytelling of Bobby “Blue” Bland, and the soulfully layered horns of the Stones.
Once you’ve seen Shinyribs’ Kevin Russell on-stage and heard his band’s music, it’s impossible to forget. Known for his outrageous outfits and antics, he’s a regular fashion icon, liable to turn up in anything from his lime-green sherbet leisure suit to a flashing LED cloak, which he recently donned for a soulful performance of “East Texas Rust” on the award-winning PBS show Austin City Limits. Born and raised in Beaumont, East Texas, Russell’s been variously dubbed (mostly by himself), the Baryshnikov of the Big Thicket, the Pavarotti of the Pineywoods, the Shakespeare of Swamp Pop, or the Shiniest Man in Showbidniz. One of the pioneers of Americana as a member of The Gourds, Russell took his musical inspiration from the fertile Ark-La-Tex turf. In the immortal words of the title track to their most recent album, “I Got Your Medicine,” Shinyribs have the cure to whatever ails you, moving that ass until you’re a helpless member of the Kevin Russell-led “all-in” conga line which snakes through the audience at the close of every show. As Austin royalty, Shinyribs are one of the music world’s best-kept secrets, but not for long. The eight-piece outfit was recently named Best Austin Band for 2017, while I Got Your Medicine was tapped as Album of the Year at the Chronicle’s prestigious Music Awards. Kevin Russell might not take himself too seriously, but he is dead-on serious about the eclectic blend of music he favors, combining Texas blues, New Orleans R&B funk, horn-driven Memphis soul, country twang, border music, big band swing, roots-rock, Tin Pan Alley and even punk into a raucous mix that includes out-of-the-blue cover nods.