Stage County
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Stage County

Band Country Rock


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"Steve Brack & Stage County Debut Album Review"

Two winners and a dud among recent country releases April 24, 2009 03:21 am — By Andrew W. Griffin pop writer Steve Brack -- Stage County Steve Brack -- Stage County Self release Central Oklahoma's Steve Brack -- Stage County perform what they call "rodeo rock country music." Brack has a pleasant, plaintive voice that doesn't vary in range very much. But then that's not what a lot of the songs on this self-titled debut call for. Brack and his band -- guitarists Eric Williams and Johnny Sly, bassist Joe Ellington and drummer Mike Tapscott -- are a tight unit on CD. Produced by Brack and Stage County along with Dave Copenhaver and recorded in Oklahoma City, the boys in Stage County seem quite comfortable where they are, geographically and musically. Geographically in that they don't go all over the map. And musically because it's a fairly consistent style at its core. "Ain't Love Like a Rodeo," a mid-tempo track with some nice guitar work by Sly and Williams, addresses loves ups and downs while "Cruel Girl" treads some familiar ground and comes off like a song that wouldn't have been uncommon at a sock hop 50 years ago. "Road I'm On," which is more of a darker, outlaw country rocker, will appeal to those who remember Charlie Daniels in his heyday. And just as Stage County gets warmed up, an acoustic ballad like "After Sundown" is thrown your way and Brack gets to show his sensitive, Garth Brooks side. And while that's fine, the placement of the tracks is a little jarring. Because you'll get an uptempo country rocker like "Buckin' Crazy" and then got to a mellow rocker like "My Style." The final track, "Blue Moon Over Texas," is one that was written by Brack's late friend and songwriting partner Alan Lee. Though it's a little rough, it's a treat because you can tell how much it means to Brack to be able to perform it on the album. And really there's not a dud in the lot. Steve Brack -- Stage County have put together a fine album and a follow up is now available which we hope to highlight here soon. And if you want to catch them live, they play all over Oklahoma on a consistent basis. For more information on Steve Brack -- Stage County, go to Grade - A - Norman Transcript

"TMA Nominees Named"

- For Immediate Release - February 15, 2010

Payline Productions / Texas Music AwardsTM / Academy of Texas Music, Inc.
P.O. Box 148
Linden, Texas 75563
Contacts: Lucky Boyd – Jinelle Boyd - 1-866-49-TEXAS

Nominees named for 8th annual awards show / B.J. Thomas to perform

MARSHALL, TX – The Academy of Texas Music, Inc. has released the list of official nominees for the 8th annual Texas Music AwardsTM to be held on Saturday, May 15th at the Marshall Convention Center in Marshall. The show will feature a concert by the host, legendary singer B.J. Thomas immediately following the presentations.

Tommy Hooper, Vice President of the Academy of Texas Music, Inc. was given the distinct honor of offering the nominations to each of the musical category nominees. Hooper remarked, "It has been an exciting process to see folks in Marshall prepare for this event, and being able to personally offer each nominee their officially sanctioned nomination was quite an honor."

At least a dozen nominated artists will take the stage to perform for this prestigious event and awards will be handed out in fifteen categories to deserving Texas musicians and professionals.

The awards show, presented this year by Northeast Texas-based, the retail partner of the Texas Music AwardsTM and the show’s production company, Payline Productions, will feature talent from several styles of music.

The annual event also serves as a fundraiser for the non-profit Academy of Texas Music, Inc. which seeks sponsorships and donations to further its efforts toward music education programs, scholarships, recognition projects, and benevolence programs for musicians in need.

Jinelle Boyd, Executive Director of the Academy of Texas Music, Inc. and Producer of the Texas Music AwardsTM explains how important this process is to the nominees.

”These outstanding artists need something to bring them recognition for their regional success and help them gain the national attention they deserve. Even though some of our nominees are already big stars in the music world, the Texas Music AwardsTM serve to give many of the newer artists a stepping stone to bigger and better things.”

Nominees are scheduled to arrive via limousine to a red carpet affair starting at noon on May 15th. The show will begin at 2:00 p.m. and the B.J. Thomas concert will begin around 6:00 p.m. Those who hold tickets to the awards show will be admitted to the concert at no charge.

One recipient in each category will hold the award title for the next year based on a complex voting system. The voting process includes a public involvement component, and interested fans are encouraged to visit the Texas Music AwardsTM website to learn more about the voting process which is now open and continues through midnight on Friday, March 5th. Fans can listen to clips of music by all the nominees and can hear the five Song and five Record nominee tracks in their entirety prior to voting.

“The public vote is important,” says Boyd, “because it proves that the artists have a connection with their fans, but the bulk of the voting is done by the Academy Board of Honorees. This group of past award recipients cast 70% of the ballots which decide who gets the award in eleven of the fifteen categories. This year’s recipients will be added to the Board of Honorees. This is how we insure that the awards are more about the music and less of a simple popularity contest.”

Boyd continues, "There is however, a popular element to the Texas Music AwardsTM. Four of the fifteen categories are decided by the public vote. The Live Band award and all the radio awards are decided in that fashion. These results will tell fans who really is leading the charge in Texas music."

Sponsorships are still available for the 8th annual awards show and range from $100 to $50,000. Each level of sponsorship comes with a pre-determined number of tickets, so this is a sure way to get good seats. Tickets go on sale to the public in mid March, and a quick sell out is expected.

Hooper said the sponsors who have signed on thus far have been gracious and generous, but he also said that many more sponsors are needed in order to deliver a show of this magnitude and also meet the needs of the Academy's mission.

For more information on voting, the awards, or sponsorships, visit

A list of the 2010 nominees appears below:

Robert Frith (Port Arthur, TX) for ROBERT FRITH (Robert Frith)
Billy Jo High (Columbus, TX) for REALITY (Bo Carter)
John Inmon (Austin, TX) for WHAT THIS HEART HOLDS (Shake Russell)
Ryan Murphey (Nashville, TN) for BUCKAROO BLUE GRASS (Michael Martin Murphey)
Randy Thomas (Houston, TX) for CAJUN CATS CREOLE DOGS (Larry Sepulvado)

Vocal Duo or Group
Blue Condition (Dallas, TX) CHEAP WINE
Mike Amabile and Run Over Twice (Houston, TX) BETTER SIDE OF ME
Shake Russell Trio (Austin, TX) WHAT THIS HEART HOLDS
Vanessa Peters & Ice Cream On Mondays (Dallas, TX) SWEETHEART, KEEP YOUR CHIN UP

David Garrett (Dallas, TX) guitar on CHEAP WINE (Blue Condition)
Robb Hibbard (Oklahoma City, OK) guitar on BAD PROSPECTS (Miss Blues)
Big John Mills (San Marcos, TX) guitar on HERE FOR THE MUSIC (Dewey Wayne)
Tubie Pushée (Navasota, TX) guitar on BLUE WITH ENVY (Tubie Pushée)
Eric Williams (Oklahoma City, OK) guitar on WESTERN NIGHTS (Steve Brack & Stage County)

“All Alone” – Blue Broussard Band (Fannett, TX) ALL ALONE
“Crazy” – Texas Renegade (San Marcos, TX) BAD DREAMS AND OTHER THINGS
”Honky Tonk Two Step Queen” – James Lann (Houston, TX) FORD
”Trouble” – Wade Bowen (Austin, TX) IF WE EVER MAKE IT HOME
”Utopia” – john Arthur martinez (Marble Falls, TX) PURGATORY ROAD

”Find Your Shine” - Kevin Higgins, songwriter (Austin, TX) Kevin Higgins
“In The Garden” - Thomas Michael Riley, songwriter (Fredericksburg, TX) Thomas Michael Riley
”Our Brothers” - Pug Johnson, songwriter (Fannett, TX) Slow Rollin’ Lows
“Valentine” - Cody Riley, songwriter (Canton, TX) Cody Riley Band
“You Belong (In Pearls Tonight)” - David Lutes, songwriter (Austin, TX) David Lutes

Female Vocalist
Katherine Dawn (Boerne, TX) 25 IN TX (Katherine Dawn)
Brenda Kay (Abilene, TX) DIRT’S STILL RED (Brenda Kay)
Vanessa Peters (Dallas, TX) SWEETHEART, KEEP YOUR CHIN UP (Vanessa Peters & Ice Cream On Mondays)
Christen Sawyer (Sugar Land, TX) THE SAMPLER (Christen Sawyer)
Jessica Shepherd (Austin, TX) YOU’RE COUNTRY NOW (Jessica Shepherd)

Male Vocalist
Dale X. Allen (Austin, TX) PAINT THE PONIES (Genuine Cowhide)
Mark Beets (Houston, TX) MORE BEETS PLEASE (Mark Beets)
Bo Carter (Lake Jackson, TX) REALITY (Bo Carter)
David Fenley (Fredericksburg, TX) LIMITED EDITION (Poor J. Brown)
Davin James (Kingwood, TX) OLD SOUL (Davin James)

BAD DREAMS AND OTHER THINGS – Texas Renegade (San Marcos, TX)
LIBERTY OR DEATH – Josh Langston (College Station, TX)
TIPS & COMPLIMENTS – Matt Harlan (Houston, TX)
TOMMY – Thomas Michael Riley (Fredericksburg, TX)
WHISTLE THIS – Mark Jungers & the Whistling Mules (Martindale, TX)

Randy Brown (Fort Worth, TX)
Michael Martin Murphey (Dallas, TX)
Pauline Reese (Austin, TX)
Thomas Michael Riley (Fredericksburg, TX)
Shake Russell (Austin, TX)

Steve Brooks (Austin, TX)
Robert Frith (Port Arthur, TX)
Kevin Higgins (Austin, TX)
Leo Rondeau (Austin, TX)
Danny Santos (Austin, TX)

Rising Star
Mark Allan Atwood (Burnet, TX) HOW COUNTRY
Nick Brumley (Marshall, TX) NICK BRUMLEY
Chip Murrey & Texas Underground (Kaufman, TX) PAYDIRT
Kevin Myers (Dripping Springs, TX) HORSESHOE
Dewey Wayne (Houston, TX) HERE FOR THE MUSIC

Live Band
Ben Morris and The Great American Boxcar Chorus (Bryan/College Station, TX)
Jerry Diaz & Hanna’s Reef (Beaumont, TX)
Jerry Audley Band (Abbott, TX)
Mike Parrish & The Parrish-Hundley Band (Houston, TX)
The Captain Legendary Band (Houston, TX)

Disc Jockey
J.B. Cloud – KBCY – Abilene, TX
Rick Heysquierdo – KPFT – Houston, TX
Carla Leigh – KSAM – Huntsville, TX
Tommy Mouser – KDOL – Livingston, TX
Dave Wheaton – KBHT – Grapeland, Texas

Broadcast Radio Station
KBCY – 99.7 FM – Abiline, TX
KDOL – 96.1 FM – Livingston, TX
KFAN – 107.9 – Fredericksburg, TX
KHYI – 95.3 FM – Dallas, TX
KPFT – 90.1 FM – Houston, TX

Internet Radio Station
Radio Free Texas (Nederland, TX)
TossM Music Radio (Arlington, TX)


To apply for press credentials, or if you would like to interview any of the nominees or B.J. Thomas, send your request to:

- Armadillo Ezine Special


LP - Steve Brack & Stage County (2007)
Single -"Buckin' Crazy" (single) Internet Radio airplay & Modern Country format Radio airplay

LP - Western Nights (2009)
Singles - "Drunk Dialing", "Let's Drink", "Western Nights" Internet Radio Airplay, Modern Country format Radio airplay



Steve Brack & Stage County Oklahoma Rodeo Rock Country Lead Vocals & Guitar: Steve Brack, Lead Guitar: Eric Williams, Bass Guitar: Joe Ellington, Percussion: Mike Tapscott, Sound Engineer: Richard Thomason. About Stage County We play an original style of Rodeo Rock Country Music, taking a little bit from all of our influences: Chris LeDoux, The Old School Outlaw’s, 70's Rock Music, "When Willie Took Country to the Hippies", Hendrix Guitars, Southern Western Finger Pickin', A Little BB King For A Touch Of Blues. About Western Nights Album Steve Brack & Stage County have continued breaking boundaries in the Oklahoma / Texas Red Dirt Scene with the release of their genre-bending new album entitled "Western Nights". This is the bands second full length album, and from the sound of it, these boys have definitely been sharpening their sound since the release of their self titled debut album. Tight songwriting and ambitious musical direction permeate the ten tracks on "Western Nights". While the album clocks in at just shy of forty minutes, it is a tour-de-force of musical mind-melds. Alt/Country forged in the fire of Rock and Roll covered with the dusty red dirt of the Oklahoma Territory. Is it Rock? Not when you are listening to the soaring steel guitar and plaintive George Strait - style vocal on the track "Amarillo", or the downright gritty honky-tonk guitars on the whiskey soaked track "Let's Drink". Is it Country? The thunderous "Spinning Spurs", with its salty brew of Soundgarden riffing matched with Chris LeDoux -rodeo-cowboy-anthem lyrics, would say not, yet…What are these guys trying to do? If this is Country, then it ain’t your Grandma’s Country. Stage County hails from the breathy flat lands of Oklahoma somewhere near the intersection of I-35 and I-40, the Heartland of America. The sprawling Oklahoma City, with its six county wide urban/rural expanse surrounding it, covers some 800 square miles and is home to half the states 3.5 million people. This is the South I – 35 corridor; a 600 mile stretch of highway anchored in the large Texas metroplexes, cutting right through this region on to Kansas City. In the middle of this strip between Norman, 70 miles from the Texas State line, to Stillwater, home of the early pioneers of Red Dirt music, lies the answer to the enigma of Stage County. Only in this melting pot of Middle America could such widely diverse musicians come together and play this type of new wave of American Country Music. Take a 6’2”, pressed wrangler wearing, self proclaimed rodeo rocker named Steve Brack and throw him in the breaking pen with a veteran Southside OKC classic-rocker rhythm section and then bring in a former head banging metal guitarist turned blues aficionado and see who comes out bruised and battered. Now throw in a second generation chicken pickin’, telecaster wielding, guitarist with a chip on his shoulder and you are sure to be repairing fences on a regular basis. “Thats how it kinda was in the early days with this band, but I like your analogy, a breaking pen…” laughed Steve Brack, vocalist and key songwriter for Stage County. “When I first met these guys, I had a few songs written and I was interested in putting together a band and eventually make a record. I have a real, straight up Honky Tonk Bar Room background, so I was totally blown away by the drive the guys put behind the songs”. The band’s debut album, released in July of 2007, came out of these early sessions. “It took a while for the line up to solidify, but, once it did, we had a fair balance of Country music background with Steve, and Johnny and then the Classic Rock, Metal and Grunge with the rest of us…it really started to click,” says guitarist Eric “EZE” Williams. “We recorded all of the basic tracks for the first album in two, four hour sessions “. Eric and Johnny then went back to record their guitar solos, each with their own distinctive style; EZE with his overdrive drenched Les Paul, and Johnny Sly with his telecaster twang. The result was a curious low-budget blend of the modern Country influence with a real Rock ethic. We’re talking twin guitar solos and power chords. ZZ top style Thunder Boogies and Southern Rock Rodeo Anthems sung with the gusto of a Country Boy Done Good. “It really worked and people started to take notice of what we were trying to do. Although, it was bizarre at first, for me personally, to be playing with a band labeled as Country, I quickly realized that with the songs we were writing and recording with Steve, we were doing something very different from the traditional Nashville style of Country and it was OK,” says EZE. “Some call it Red Dirt, some not, I like to call it Rodeo Rock,” says Steve Brack. “The original Red Dirt started up in Stillwater with Bob Childers, Mike McClure (The Great Divide), Johnny Cooper (Red Dirt Rangers), and Cody Canada (Cross Canadian Ragweed) Jason Boland and so on…We are just doing our own thing, kinda like they were. We have our roots in Ok