The Heart of Texas Country Music Association will celebrate its 21th Anniversary on Friday and Saturday, March 19th and 20th, and Friday and Saturday, March 26th and 27th at the Ed Davenport Civic Center in Brady.
The festivities will include a Welcome Party and Dance on the Friday nights, an afternoon Matinee Concert at 1:00 PM on the Saturdays followed by the Dinner and Dance on Saturday night beginning at 7:00 PM.
Only 2,400 tickets will be sold for the festivities. Tickets are now on sale by calling (325) 597-3491.
The entertainment this year will be full of Traditional Country Music legends including Johnny Rodriguez, Moe Bandy and the Americana Band, Leona Williams, Amber Digby, Darrell & Mona McCall, Jake Hooker and the Outsiders, Dottsy, Justin Trevino, Tony Booth, Curtis Potter, Frankie Miller, Kimberly Murray, Rance Norton and Landon Dodd.
Moe Bandy formed his first band in 1962. For a dozen years, he played all over Texas, until recording his first hit "I Just Started Hating Cheating Songs Today." He followed that with a string of Number Ones including "Bandy The Rodeo Clown" "Hank Williams You Wrote My Life" and "Hey Joe." He currently works at the Jim Stafford Theater in Branson.
"I am looking forward to the Heart of Texas Country Music Association’s 21st Anniversary Party," Moe Bandy said. "We are really going to have a great time and I am looking forward to spending time with some of my friends and fans in Brady."
Johnny Rodriguez was born in Sabinal, Texas. In the 1970s and 1980s, he was one of country music’s most successful male artists, recording a string of hit songs, such as "You Always Come Back (To Hurtin’ Me)," "Desperado," "Down on the Rio Grande," and "Foolin’." He has recorded six No. 1 country hits in his career including "Ridin’ My Thumb To Mexico" "Pass Me By" and "That’s The Way Love Goes."
Leona Williams was born in Vienna, Missouri. She was featured on her own radio at the age of 15, before moving to Nashville. She recorded for Hickory, MCA, RCA and Polygram Records. She is now signed with Heart of Texas Records and has released two very successful projects on the label. Williams’ hits include "Yes Man" "You Take Me For Granted" and "Someday When Things Are Good."
Darrell McCall is a legendary Texas dance hall entertainer with many hits to his credit including "Dreams of A Dreamer" "It’s The Water" "There’s Still A Lot of Love In San Antone" and his duet with Willie Nelson on "Lily Dale." Darrell’s wife Mona will also join him on stage. Mona released her first album "Memories Love A Melody" two years ago.
Tony Booth gained fame by working for Buck Owens as a front man and bass player. He branched out on his own with major hits including "Cinderella" "Keys In The Mailbox" "Close Up The Honkytonks" and "Lonesome 7-7203." Frankie Miller won a Grammy Award for his own composition "Blackland Farmer" and followed it up with hits "Family Man" and "A Little South of Memphis." Jake Hooker currently records for Startex Records and has gained a large following with Traditional Country Music fans. Dottsy recorded some very successful projects for RCA including the songs "After Sweet Memories Play Born To Lose Again" "Storms Never Last" and "I’ll Be Your San Antone Rose".
Justin Trevino has led both the Mason and Llano Country Opry Bands for ten years while producing six very successful solo albums and touring with Darrell McCall and Johnny Bush. Amber Digby is enjoying the success of her latest released album "Another Way To Live." The project joins "Passion, Pride" "Here Come The Teardrops" "Music From The Honkytonks" as yet another fan favorite. Kimberly Murray has just released her first project "Once Upon A Time In A Honky Tonk" and is a regular opry performer. Jake Hooker and Justin Trevino join her on the project. Rance Norton, a college freshman, is another popular opry performer with his first release "True Country" now available including duets with Johnny Bush and Justin Trevino. Landon Dodd has just released his first CD "Call of The Wine" with help from Leona Williams and Amber Digby on a couple of special duets.
The Welcome Party and Dance on Friday night, March 19 and March 16, will feature Jake Hooker and the Outsiders, Tony Booth and Amber Digby. The dances will be from 8:00 PM until Midnight and admission is $15.00 per person and BYOB.
The Saturday Matinee Concerts will feature Tony Booth, Curtis Potter, Amber Digby, Kimberly Murray, Leona Williams, Frankie Miller, Darrell & Mona McCall, Rance Norton and Justin Trevino. Moe Bandy and Rance Norton will appear on the March 20 events and Johnny Rodriguez, Dottsy and Landon Dodd will be included on the March 27 events. Admission to the concert is $20.00 per person. The concert will be held from 1:00 PM until 3:00 PM.
The Saturday Night Dinner and Dance will begin with a bar b que meal at 7:00 PM and a dance will follow from 8:00 PM until Midnight. Admission is $20.00 and it is BYOB.
The Heart of Texas Country Music Museum will have special hours during the 21st Anniversary Celebration. The museum will be open Thursday from 2:00 PM until 4:00 PM, Friday from 12:00 PM until 5:00 PM, Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM. Several special guests will be at the museum during some of these times. The museum is located at 1701 South Bridge in Brady. The Heart of Texas Country Music Association grew from the Hillbilly Hits Fan Club, a group established to promote the Hillbilly Hits Radio show from KNEL FM 95.3 in Brady. The traditional Country Music radio show is hosted by Tracy Pitcox and features requests and interviews with the legendary figures of the industry including George Jones, Willie Nelson, Kitty Wells, Ray Price, Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn.
The association, which boasts 950 members, promotes the Mason and Llano Country Opry shows at the Odeon and Lantex Theaters. The organization has sponsored many entertainers at those venues including Ray Price, Gene Watson, Kitty Wells, the Bellamy Brothers, Willie Nelson, Johnny Bush, Ferlin Husky, John Conlee, Freddie Hart, the Geezinslaws and Jean Shepard among others.
The Heart of Texas Country Music Museum located in Brady, opened in August of 2000. The museum contains items from over seventy five country music entertainers including Patsy Cline, Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash, George Jones, Hank Thompson and even Jim Reeves’ 1956 tour bus and Ferlin Husky’s 1975 Cadillac.
The organization formed Heart of Texas Records was formed in 2003, giving many of the established artists an outlet to record and promote their music. Leona Williams, Ferlin Husky, Floyd Tillman, Hank Thompson, Joe Paul Nichols, Johnny Bush, Curtis Potter, Darrell McCall, Pretty Miss Norma Jean, Big Bill Lister, Justin Trevino, Amber Digby, Tony Booth, Frankie Miller, Kimberly Murray and Landon Dodd are all currently under the Heart of Texas Records banner.
"We are excited about celebrating our 21th Anniversary," Tracy Pitcox said. "We have enjoyed a great relationship with many of our KNEL listeners. Our group grew from a small core of listeners to a 950 member organization that promotes Traditional Country Music throughout our state."
For more information about the Heart of Texas Country Music Association, log on to www.heartoftexascountry.com.