No-Name Joint, Loebau, TX

Loebau StoreStevie Ray had mentioned something about setting me up with a jar of moonshine the next time I came by. At 2 pm on a Wednesday afternoon with the joint already occupied by four reclined and reticent bikers and two local, louder, guys looking for oil, I rethunk my expectations.

This 125 year old, now dilapidated, building has hosted everything from the town post office and general store to the local meat market. The town is now all gone and I doubt there will ever be a post office in Loebau again.

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I Had to Get Drunk Last Night

Bullet Hole at the Railway Saloon, Kingsbury, TXRed eyed and dry mouthed, I grope my way between the front seats towards the stereo. Fingers fumbling through the black digital front, and last night’s last played song magically starts. To the sound of Howard Crockett’s Last Will and Testimony (of a Drinkin’ Man), I push the driver side door open to let some fresh air in. It doesn’t take long before the urge to move on brings temptation to my temporary home, but first a little clean up of the worst remains from last night.

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Taylor Cafe, Taylor, TX

Taylor CafeThe red corner building offered a quiet setting on this Saturday morning. The lone bartender was filling the coolers with beer so they could get cold enough before the regulars come craving and it all rocked me into a familiar rhythm. I found my place on a rusty old tractor saddle so rickety that I almost fell off, and in a movement of coordinated embarrassment and balancing act, I simultaneously looked for something more stable only to realize that the entire row of chairs looked like they needed a new set of bolts and screws. Whatever, rickety barstools would soon be of secondary importance.

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Double Ringer, Zuehl, TX

Bar DogSaint Hedwig Club at 14297 FM 1346 in Bexar County was my destination for the weekend and I didn’t care to call ahead. 80 miles later I found it to be closed down for good. Another loss. What to do now?

Last night, listening to coyotes howling outside my moonlit silvery RV and with a raccoon finding it’s way over my roof, I decided this is the weekend to get back on the road to explore more of the magic that lies behind swinging doors and a jukebox.

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The Broken Spoke, Austin, TX

broken-spoke-stampI look out the car window into the emblazoned world that the neon along South Lamar Boulevard paints up. Many treasures are hidden in the shadows of the alleys and while some of them are hard to find if you don’t know where to look, some are more well known–and for good reasons too. Read more…

Leon’s Store, Rockne, TX

Out with the TruckersMost every time I put my foot here there’s something going on, but today we’re just rolling dice. I’m not much of a dice player so Gary slips me a couple bucks under the table to throw in when I’ve lost my last pot, just to keep the game going. No matter how much he spends, it still ends with me losing. Simple fun for an afternoon. This is how you do things in Rockne, Texas. Read more…

Circleville Store, Circleville, TX

7-up Cooler Circleville Store Circleville, TXThe old gas pumps in front are all out of use. With the big chains selling cheap gas in the nearby town they are no longer worthwhile. Despite the fact of having no gas, this place has a lot to offer. Read more…

Tolfur’s, Ammanville, TX

tolfurs5Across the road lies St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. In all of it’s glory, it’s a fine example of the painted churches in this area, but we’re not here to attend the church, or maybe we are. It’s another kind of church we’re aiming for, a countryside hangout and meeting place for the locals, a proper beer-joint. Read more…

Matt Hillyer of Eleven Hundred Springs Talks about Honky-Tonks

matt-hillyer“When we got started, we played at this place called Naomis and it was just this tiny, tiny little beer joint, a honky-tonk if there ever was one. The kind of place you can by a six pack to go from, the walls are falling apart, the dirt is probably one of the only things that’s holding the place up. Read more…

Nancy Morgan Talks about Giddy Ups

Giddy UpsThis bar is my living room – my actual residence is not large enough to have all of these great folks over – so they come to my living room at Giddy Ups. Sometimes when we have younger folks come in and they start to act up Read more…