Fat Tony's Fall Function Turns Up All the Way

Photos by Marco Torres
Does Fat Tony know how to throw a party? The answer will always and forever be "Hell Yeah!" With the help of sponsor Remy Martin, Tony invited his Houston homies DJ Good Grief, Bombón and Rai P to assist him with the kickoff soiree for his upcoming tour. Our own Marco Torres sent in this visual summary of the event, held this past Saturday at The Summit, a new-ish venue located at 3536 Navigation Blvd. in the East End.

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Lone Star Music Fest Abruptly Cancels

The Lone Star Music Festival, which promised to bring an eclectic crop of national, regional and local artists to Discovery Green on November 7 and 8, abruptly and mysteriously scratched the event over the weekend, leaving only the following cryptic message on its Web site.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, the Lone Star Music Festival, planned for November 7 and 8 at Discovery Green in downtown Houston, is cancelled.

In fact, that sentence is the only thing that remains on the site, besides a promise that Ticketfly will notify everyone who had bought tickets and process refunds. The festival's Facebook page has also been deleted.

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The Best Acts at Yes, Indeed! Fest 2014

Photos by Violeta Alvarez
By Matthew Keever and Angelica Leicht

Six months after the release of their debut album, Shiny Eyes, Catch Fever's pop rock continues to please longtime fans and grab the attention of new listeners as well. The power trio rocked the Continental Club Saturday night at 8pm, with vocalist/guitarist Taylor Huffman crooning above bass and keyboard, incorporating harmonies and backing vocals perfectly above tight percussion.

The night was still young when Catch Fever was onstage, and the crowd hadn't quite formed yet, but the club was still filled with applause and good tunes for the duration of the group's set. M.K.

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The Five Best Concerts In Houston This Week: Overkill, Blaggards, Coheed and Cambria, etc.

eOne Music
Over Kill today: Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth, Derek "The Skull" Tailer, Dave Linsk, D.D. Verni, and Ron Lipnicki.
Scout Bar, September 16

As the screamin' front man for New Jersey thrash-metal legends Overkill since Day 1 of the group's formation, Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth has seen, experienced and learned a lot in three and a half decades. So what is the one piece of advice that his 2014 self might offer the 1980 Blitz? "Give up the fucking cigarettes, man," he laughs heartily. "Throw them away!"

Ellsworth's voice is in fine condition, and he can certainly hit those super-high notes, on the band's newest effort, White Devil Armory (eOne Records). While not a concept album per se, its 11 tracks are essentially short stories featuring a character, "the Armorist" who embarks on a journey of war, cage-fighting, medical emergencies, devils, politics and religion -- all set to brutal double bass drums, deep bass notes and shredding guitar solos. Rocks Off will have a full interview with Ellsworth Tuesday morning. BOB RUGGIERO

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RIP Joe Sample: Houston Music Icon Dies at 75

Photo by Marco Torres
Joe Sample, the Houston native whose masterful keyboard playing made him a leading figure in the jazz fusion movement of the '60s and '70s and a top session musician in jazz, R&B and pop for several decades, passed away Friday night, according to his Facebook page. His family announced his death with the following message:

[Wife] Yolanda and his son Nicklas would like to thank all of you, his fans and friends, for your prayers and support during this trying time. Please know that Joe was aware and very appreciative of all of your prayers, comments, letters/cards and well wishes.

Sample was a graduate of Wheatley High School, where he and some classmates founded a group they called the Jazz Crusaders in the mid-'50s. They moved to Southern California in the early '60s and became one of the most popular and respected groups in jazz thanks to albums like Freedom Sound and Looking Ahead. In the '70s, as their sound incorporated more and more elements of funk and R&B, the group changed its name to the Crusaders. Sample also took plenty of jobs on the side, appearing on classic pop-rock albums such as Joni Mitchell's Court & Spark, Marvin Gaye's Let's Get It On and Canned Heat's Up the Country. It was not easy work, he told the Houston Press in 2013:

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10 Acts to Watch at Yes, Indeed! Fest 2014

Photo by Trish Badger/Courtesy of Yes, Indeed!
Black Pistol Fire
By Chris Gray and Matthew Keever

Weekends that go by without another multi-stage festival setting up shop somewhere in Houston are getting pretty scarce, but Yes, Indeed~ has a definite leg up due to its track record and homegrown appeal. For its third edition, the nine-hour event relocates to mid-Main and expands to a nine-hour, four-stage musical feast unfolding at the Continental Club (plus patio), Big Top and Alley Kat, all within stumbling distance of one another if need be.

With almost 30 acts in all, Yes Indeed's backbone remains Houston's vibrant indie scene, but you'll find bands as far away as Kansas City, Canada and neighboring Louisiana, as well as a handful from Austin. To help you sort through the schedule (which you can find here), Rocks Off picked out ten acts we think are especially worthy of your attention. With tickets a mere $12 in advance (so get 'em now), whoever you choose will be quite a bargain.

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The 10 Best Concerts In Houston This Weekend: Los Rakas, Gareth Emery, Lily Allen, etc.

Categories: Only In Houston

Los Rakas
Warehouse Live, September 12

Equally competent remixing Wiz Khaifa's "We Dem Boyz" as they are grooving a smooth reggaeton love jam, Panamanian cousins Raka Dun and Raka Rich are as cool and colorful as their adopted city of Oakland, Calif. Their major-label debut, this year's El Negrito Dun Dun y Ricardo, is a triumph of Latino Pride and adventurous movimiento. Their live show is full of positivity, dance circles, and seemingly unlimited energy.

This concert is the third stop of the ¡Pachanga! Tour, a joint venture between Red Bull Panamerika and Rich Garza's Austin-based Pachanga Latino Music Festival. Co-headliners are Colombian alternative electro-tropical quartet Bomba Estereo, with Houston's own Bombón DJ Collective joining the tour in Houston and San Antonio. MARCO TORRES

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Six Easy Ways to Find New Band Members

Categories: Only In Houston

Photo by JoshBerglund19
"Well, we were looking for someone that can play a real instrument, but..."
After spending a certain amount of time either learning to play an instrument, or being a member of an existing band, many musicians decide the time has come for them to start their own project. But while it's always exciting to create a new musical venture, finding new members can be a challenge unless that person plans on filling out the new band entirely from his or her circle of friends.

Yes, you may be on speaking terms with that bass player who lives under a bridge and exposes himself to passers-by, but he's probably not the best choice even if he can rock a mean groove. So, most people forming their own band from scratch are probably going to have to get creative to find members...but these six strategies might work.

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Houston Bands Bask In KISS' Reflected Glow

Photos by Francisco Montes
Jody Seabody and the Whirls
Note: On the heels of KISS' Labor Day Eve visit to Houston, local label Artificial Head Records rounded up several local bands to assemble at Fitzgerald's Friday night to rock and roll all night with their favorite songs by the painted men from Detroit Rock City. Although our scheduled reviewer had to cancel at the last minute (things happen), photographer Francisco Montes had us covered.

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The Five Best Concerts In Houston This Week: Aretha Franklin, Cory Branan, Lyle Lovett, etc.

Photo Marc Brubaker
Aretha Franklin
Arena Theatre, September 9

Through no fault of her own, Aretha Franklin stumbled into 2014's more improbable headlines in July, when the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer (class of '87) stopped off to grab a post-concert burger at a Niagara Falls-area Johnny Rockets and was told her chosen table was reserved for dine-in customers only. This, the woman who has been a towering presence in the pop, gospel and soul spheres since the '60s, establishing a standard on signature songs like "Think," "Chain of Fools" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" that other singers have been trying to live up to ever since.

Most recently feted last year by Rhino's plush 97-song collection The Queen of Soul, Franklin is a national treasure -- as confirmed by her 1994 Kennedy Center award -- who should be allowed to eat her takeout wherever she damn well pleases. CHRIS GRAY

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