Randy Rogers Band Springs Surprise Trouble Release Show at Firehouse Saloon Tonight
The Randy Rogers Band has become a big enough name on the highly competitive Texas country/Red Dirt circuit that the quintet was chosen to open for George Strait and Martina McBride on Strait's Houston stop of his "The Cowboy Rides Away" tour at Reliant Stadium back in March. Reached by phone from "freezing cold" Stillwater, Okla., where his band was preparing to play the festival know as "Calf Fry," Rogers sounds like he can still hardly believe it himself.
Photo by David McLister
"Aw man, I was tingling all over," says Rogers. "I was freaked out, man.
"I haven't gotten nervous in years," he chuckles. "To have that feeling again, man, was like such a big rush of excitement and joy -- all-time favorite country singer for me, man, George Strait. Being on the same stage as him, and him mentioning our band name during his show, sharing that moment with him, which I would assume for him was a pretty big deal too, you know?"
Rogers is quick to laugh on the phone, but our conversation comes on a day when the big news in country music is the death of George Jones. Although Rogers says he was not fortunate enough to meet the Possum, his voice is full of the same respect that poured out from some of the genre's elders.
"I think he probably was one of the all-time greatest recorded voices in any genre of music," Rogers says. "I was online a while ago, and Merle Haggard had a comment that said, 'The world lost the best country singer ever today.' I think I'll just stand in line with Merle on that one."
Tonight at the Firehouse Saloon, Rogers' band will throw a surprise release party for brand-new album Trouble (MCA Nashville), which officially comes out Tuesday. It's a far cry from Reliant Stadium, but also somewhere the RRB -- which grew out of the music scene around then-Southwest Texas State University at the dawn of the millennium and has had a stable lineup since 2003 -- played some of their earliest shows.
Rogers estimates his band has played the Firehouse at least 100 times, dating back to the days when the only people who would show up were family members sitting around the venue's picnic tables. They may have played it a little too often for some band members.
"I think our drummer used to get so frustrated because we played there for his birthday, like, four years in a row," he says. "A lot of important moments for us as a band were at the Firehouse."