Featured Music: Wednesday, April 08, 2009
files/2009-04-08/music_1.jpg
Aside from some Spanish folk influences, the Tejas Brothers are countrified C&W.
The Tejas Brothers
Fri at 7pm at Turner Park Concert Series, 600 NE 8th St, Grand Prairie. Free. 972-642-2787.
Sat at 9pm at the White Elephant Saloon, 106 E Exchange, FW. $10
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
El Honky-tonk

Fort Worth’s Tejas Brothers haven’t been together long but are long on potential.

By CAROLINE COLLIER

Though they’ve been together for only about three years, the Tejas Brothers seem to have been making big strides. The Fort Worth quartet’s recently released eponymous debut reached as high as No. 2 on the Americana Music Chart. (With No. 1 in sight, Willie Nelson’s collaboration with Asleep at the Wheel came along and, well, you can guess the rest.) “Boogie Woogie Mamacita,” Tejas Brothers’ second single, is ascending the Texas Music Chart. The band has another album’s worth of material ready to record and summer trips to Mexico and Norway on tap. “Things are just now heating up,” said bassist John Garza.
Upon seeing three Hispanic musicians, including an accordion player, some newcomers to the Tejas Brothers sound might expect a Tejano oomph. “But we bust out the honkytonk,” said guitarist Chris Valez. The album, which they recorded at Audio Dallas, showcases tunes at home mostly in a rural Texas dancehall: more a mix of blues, rock, and country, with –– ¡sí, se puede! –– a little Tex-Mex flair. However, accordionist and frontman Dave Perez said, “I never write songs based on the accordion. It’s more like a guitar or piano: a second rhythm instrument.”
When Valez, a veteran Fort Worth axe-man, wanted to diverge from straight-ahead blues, he sought out an accordion player. He asked around, and a friend pointed him to Los Lupes Cafeteria in Grand Prairie, where Perez entertained guests by singing and playing the accordion. Valez invited him to sit in at his Thursday residency at the Stockyards Saloon, and the two quickly started to collaborate. The rest of the band fell into place rather easily. Soon after, drummer Danny Cochran and Garza joined. Even though the four veteran musos had been playing together for less than a year, they were already opening for the popular Derailers at legendary Gruene Hall, an opportunity any seasoned band would covet.
From the start, the band also was a business. “It is a four-way partnership,” said Cochran. “We even have papers drawn up in the county courthouse.” Investing in themselves, the Brothers are stashing most of their earnings for future necessities. This pay-it-forward approach has allowed the guys to self-finance the recording and purchase a van and trailer for their extensive Texas (and beyond) touring.
Their DIY mentality is the result of years of experience. Every member is in his mid-thirties or older. Excepting Perez, all have been in more bands than they can count. Drummer Cochran has played with Anson Funderburgh, Delbert McClinton, and Dave Mason. Garza gained regional fame as low-end man for the Prowlers and Holland K. Smith. (The blues scene, according to the Brothers, started crumbling a few years back. “It is saturated with bands who will play for nothing,” said Cochran. “And it usually starts out as a band, but somebody ends up leader, and the rest of the guys end up backing one guy up.”)
The Tejas Brothers are a solid unit. All four are involved in every aspect of the project, from writing and arranging songs to marketing and promotions. “I haven’t experienced the bad stuff about the music business,” said Perez, speaking from the point of view of someone in his first official band.
Fort Worth’s Smith Music Group (Randy Rogers, Bleu Edmondson, No Justice) picked up the Tejas Brothers about a month ago. Smith’s in-house promotion and distribution capabilities have allowed the band to expand beyond North Texas. They gig regularly on the festival circuit and play private parties, allowing Perez, Valez, and company to escape, even if only temporarily, the grueling club scene and to generate some much-appreciated income. Garza just put in his notice at the Yamaha motorcycle dealership where he had been employed, so that he could join Perez in working five days a week managing the band.
Industry smarts aside, the Tejas Brothers are surging, thanks mostly to their accessible songwriting. They often get compared to the Texas Tornados due to the Spanish folk influences. Everyone but Cochran contributes to the band’s spacious harmonies. “We just want to connect with people,” said Valez. “We have nice, short songs.”
The Tejas Brothers’ sound lends itself to a broad range of listeners. There are lyrics en español, but the band will not be perpetuating any stereotypes: Don’t expect songs about drinking Corona on the beach. The sound could be described as Pure Texas, an evolution from early folk to C&W and all of the other styles that have informed what we know of as Texas Music. As for inspiration, Cochran said, “The well runs deep.”


Honkytonk
Fort Worth’s Tejas Brothers haven’t been together long but are long on potential.
BY CAROLINE COLLIER
Though they’ve been together for only about three years, the Tejas Brothers seem to have been making big strides. The Fort Worth quartet’s recently released eponymous debut reached as high as No. 2 on the Americana Music Chart. (With No. 1 in sight, Willie Nelson’s collaboration with Asleep at the Wheel came along and, well, you can guess the rest.) “Boogie Woogie Mamacita,” Tejas Brothers’ second single, is ascending the Texas Music Chart. The band has another album’s worth of material ready to record and summer trips to Mexico and Norway on tap. “Things are just now heating up,” said bassist John Garza.
Upon seeing three Hispanic musicians, including an accordion player, some newcomers to the Tejas Brothers sound might expect a Tejano oomph. “But we bust out the honky-tonk,” said guitarist Chris Valez. The album, which they recorded at Audio Dallas, showcases tunes at home mostly in a rural Texas dancehall: more a mix of blues, rock, and country, with –– ¡sí, se puede! –– a little Tex-Mex flair. However, accordionist and frontman??? Dave Perez said, “I never write songs based on the accordion. It’s more like a guitar or piano: a second rhythm instrument.”
When Valez, a veteran Fort Worth axe-man, wanted to diverge from straight-ahead blues, he sought out an accordion player. He asked around, and a friend pointed him to Los Lupes Cafeteria in Grand Prairie, where Perez entertained guests by singing and playing the accordion. Valez invited him to sit in at his Thursday residency at the Stockyards Saloon, and the two quickly started to collaborate. The rest of the band fell into place rather easily. Soon after, drummer Danny Cochran and Garza joined. Even though the four veteran musos had been playing together for less than a year, they were when were they? already opening for the popular Derailers at legendary Gruene Hall, an opportunity any seasoned band would covet.
From the start, the band also was a business. “It is a four-way partnership,” said Cochran. “We even have papers drawn up in the county courthouse.” Investing in themselves, the Brothers are stashing most of their earnings for future necessities. This pay-it-forward approach has allowed the guys to self-finance the recording and purchase a van and trailer for their extensive Texas (and beyond) touring.
Their DIY mentality is the result of years of experience. Every member is in his mid-thirties or older. Excepting Perez, all have been in more bands than they can count. Drummer Cochran has played with Anson Funderburgh, Delbert McClinton, and Dave Mason. Garza gained regional fame as low-end man for the Prowlers and Holland K. Smith. (The blues scene, according to the Brothers, started crumbling a few years back. “It is saturated with bands who will play for nothing,” said Cochran. “And it usually starts out as a band, but somebody ends up leader, and the rest of the guys end up backing one guy up.”)
The Tejas Brothers are a solid unit. All four are involved in every aspect of the project, from writing and arranging songs to marketing and promotions. “I haven’t experienced the bad stuff about the music business,” said Perez, speaking from the point of view of someone in his first official band.
Fort Worth’s Smith Music Group (Randy Rogers, Bleu Edmondson, No Justice) picked up the Tejas Brothers about a month ago. Smith’s in-house promotion and distribution capabilities have allowed the band to expand beyond North Texas. They gig regularly on the festival circuit and play private parties, allowing Perez, Valez, and company to escape, even if only temporarily, the grueling club scene and to generate some much-appreciated income. Garza just put in his notice at the Yamaha motorcycle dealership where he had been employed, so that he could join Perez in working five days a week managing the band.
Industry smarts aside, the Tejas Brothers are surging thanks mostly to their accessible songwriting. They often get compared to the Texas Tornados due to the Spanish folk influences. Everyone but Cochran contributes to the band’s spacious harmonies. “We just want to connect with people,” said Valez. “We have nice, short songs.”
The Tejas Brothers’ sound lends itself to a broad range of listeners. There are lyrics en español, but the band will not be perpetuating any stereotypes: Don’t expect songs about drinking Corona on the beach. The sound could be described as Pure Texas, an evolution from early folk to C&W and all of the other styles that have informed what we know of as Texas Music. As for inspiration, Cochran said, “The well runs deep.”



Email this Article...

Back to Top


Copyright 2002 to 2019 FW Weekly.
3311 Hamilton Ave. Fort Worth, TX 76107
Phone: (817) 321-9700 - Fax: (817) 335-9575 - Email Contact
Archive System by PrimeSite Web Solutions