Jimmie Vaughan Announces New Album and Tour Plans
Packed with 14 covers of classic tunes that are close to his heart, the album—recorded, like the previous one, in his hometown of Austin, Texas—reunites Vaughan with the same cast of musicians that helped him out on the previous set. Also returning for round two, to assist with the vocals, is Lou Ann Barton, whose powerful pipes grace several tunes on the new release.
"The first album was a success," says Vaughan, "and what happened is I never really stopped. Even after I turned the first one in I was still recording. I've decided that, as long as I feel like it, I'm going to do that from now on."
While touring in support of Blues, Ballads and Favorites, Vaughan performed "Just A Little Bit" from the album on Conan, and also gave a surprise performance on Conan O'Brien's "Legally Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour." In a cover story on Vaughan in The Austin Chronicle, Bill Bentley described the album as "a stunning set of real-life passion, told by veterans with an uncanny way of making things made out of wood and metal tell the truth about life."
Jimmie Vaughan—who first came to prominence as co-founder of the pioneering Texas blues-rock band the Fabulous Thunderbirds in the '70s— has certainly earned the right to do whatever he wants whenever he wants to do it. Since he was a kid, Vaughan has dedicated his life to mastering his axe and reminding folks what American music is all about—music, he says, that need not be categorized.
On the self-produced More Blues, Ballads and Favorites, bringing it all together is exactly what Jimmie Vaughan does. From the opening track, Pierce's "I Ain't Never," to the closer, "The Rains Came," originally by the Texas Gulf Coast band Big Sambo and the House Wreckers and later reworked by the late, great Doug Sahm; Vaughan and his like-minded pals keep things rockin' and rollin'. Other highlights include two tracks by the recently deceased Bobby Charles, "No Use Knocking" and "I Ain't Gonna Do it No More"; two picked up from the semi-obscure New Orleans R&B singer Annie Laurie, "It's Been a Long Time" and "I'm In the Mood For You"; and great, often lost songs originally cut by Hank Williams ("I Hang My Head and Cry"), Jimmy Liggins ("Teardrop Blues"), Jivin' Gene ("Breaking Up Is Hard to Do"), Teddy Humphries ("What Makes You So Tough"), Ray Charles ("Greenback Dollar Bill"), Nappy Brown ("Cried Like a Baby"), Lloyd Price ("Oooh Oooh Oooh"), and Jimmy Reed ("I Want to Love You").
If the repertoire sounds like a record collector's dream, that might be because Vaughan approached the recording sessions in much the same way that the original artists must have. "I pretend that I'm making 45s. I only make two or three at a time and I might say, 'This song would be a good flip side.' We go in the studio and work out the arrangement and then go for it.
Of course, much of the credit goes to the band, and Vaughan reserves special kudos for Barton. "I go back with Lou Ann before the Thunderbirds," he says. "When we met she was 18 and sang a Little Richard medley and I never recovered. She was wild. She's just got a lot of feeling and we like the same kind of stuff."
In support of More Blues, Ballads and Favorites, Vaughan and band will once again hit the road.
"I just love this band and it's really fun to play with them because we really swing," says Vaughan in summation. "That makes the soloing interesting and fun. It's like jumping on a merry-go-round and riding it. I'm gonna keep recording as songs come up. I've got a good little studio in town that I like. We can have a rehearsal and go in the studio and knock a couple of them out. I just pretend that I'm a kid. I still enjoy the music. That's what it's all about for me."
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Jimmie Vaughan 2011 Tour Dates
April 29 Memphis, TN – Beale Street Music Festival
April 30 Houston, TX – Downtown Houston
May 1 San Antonio, TX – Sam's Burger Joint Music Hall
May 6 Jackson, MS – Fire Club
May 7 Baton Rouge, LA – Baton Rouge Blues Festival
May 27 Austin, TX – Antone's
May 29 Vinton, LA – Delta Downs Racetrack & Casino
June 12 Sellersville, PA – Sellersville Theater
June 13 Norfolk, CT – Invinity Hall
June 16 New York, NY – Jazz at Lincoln Center
June 17 Londonderry, NH – Tupelo
June 18 Westerly, RI – Knickerbockers
June 19 Foxborough, MA – Showcase Live
June 29 Phoenix, AZ – Rhythm Room
June 30 San Diego, CA – Anthology
July 1 San Juan Capistrano, CA – Coach House
July 2 Agoura Hills, CA – Canyon Club
July 3 Redondo Beach, CA – LA Guitar Festival
July 5 Exeter, CA – Orange Blossom Junction
July 6 San Francisco, CA – Yoshi's
July 7 Santa Cruz, CA – Moe's Alley
July 8 Modesto, CA – Fat Cat
July 9 Sacramento, CA – Harlow's
July 10 Chico, CA – Sierra Nevada Brewing
July 13 Portland, OR – Aladdin
July 14 Grants Pass, OR – Rouge
July 15 Aberdeen, WA – D&R Theatre
July 16 Winthrop, WA – Blues Ranch
July 22 Austin, TX – Antone's
August 4 Gravenhurst, ON – Peters Players
August 6 Kitchner, ON – Kitchner Blues Festival
August 12 Roseburg, OR – Douglas County Fair
August 25 Evanston, IL - Space
August 27 Springfield, IL – Old Capitol Blues & BBQ's
September 4 Copper Mountain, CO – Copper Mountain Resort
September 25 Fort Worth, TX – Bass Performance Hall
October 2 Jefferson, GA – Georgia Blues Festival
October 8 Carolina Beach, NC – Seafood, Blues & Jazz Festival
October 21 St. Charles, MO – The Family Arena