A-Team PR has been good to us. Studio A is where the Free Range Texan Podcast was born. And the brain trust at A-Team PR has allowed us to push boundaries every episode since. A consistent production schedule that works like a well-oiled assembly line knocks out our segments that are edited into podcast episodes. Always on time for every deadline. A-Team PR has discovered that this production philosophy works well for almost any other podcast endeavor. And so now, A-Team PR is sharing these skills with select individuals, groups, and/or organizations that feel inspired to produce their own podcast. And the system works.
If you are from West Texas, the Maines Brothers have always been a part of the fabric that best represents our local musician community. Lead singer, Kenny Maines, has been a part of our entertainment community for as long as any of us can remember. As a broadcast/podcast producer, I have always looked at Kenny as a valuable resource and a great interview. And now, he is as comfortable to visit with as ever.
There is often a degree of aloofness in so many of our regional entertainment favorites. There are those singers and recording artists in our area who remain lost in their own little world of periodic recordings and Facebook posts, while a genuine artist like Kenny Maines maintains a constant level of humble appreciation for his media contacts and fans through the years. He is a gentleman of remarkable character.
Our visit with Kenny Maines once again reminded me of all the reasons that he remains one of the best. Kenny has had a career as a nationally released recording artist, songwriter, and stage performer that began when he was a young child. There is not a better example of someone who spent his life in the entertainment industry and still to this day, performing as a single, remains one the the best values available for recording studio vocal work to entertainment gigs. His crowds continually quiet down and listen to the performance value of his sets.
Here’s the thing, while we have not been close friends, we have been acquainted for a large part of our lives. This article would be incomplete if I did not include one more thing that is clearly noticeable about spending any time around Kenny Maines. He is simply the type of person that will very gently leave you wanting to be a better person yourself. His talents are remarkable. And his lifestyle remains one that commands enormous respect. We are proud to have him as our guest on Episode 59 of the Free Range Texan Podcast.
For bookings and scheduling information, Kenny’s web site is: http://www.kennymaines.com/about.html.
First, I want to say thank you to Danny Cadra, who kindly spent time visiting with us and shared some of his music that is authentically West Texan. We want to thank Danny for his service in the Marine Corps and remind everyone that he has a web site and is available for bookings.
To anyone who has grown up in or around the State of Texas, you know that the Marfa Lights are a part of the lore of our land. What has always intrigued me is that they are in fact a real phenomena. Every few years or so there are scientists or university study groups that announce that they have cracked the case of the Marfa Lights. But when they apply their theories to the actual phenomena, like so many others before them they are quickly proven to not be able to exactly explain what the lights are doing or what causes them.
One of my favorite stories is when the government decided that they would get to the bottom of the Marfa Lights. They took a battalion of Comanche Black Hawk helicopters to the popular viewing sight and waited to chase them down. Our government’s finest flying machines were not capable of so much as even coming up with a theory. In short, the lights play games. In our Free Range Texan Podcast Episode 58 we tell a story of one such event. There are hundreds of stories and hundreds of sightings, and they are always unique.
Between last month’s Free Range Texan episode and now, we lost Mike Pritchard to illness. None of us saw it coming.
I’m not even sure I remember the first time I became aware of and acquainted with Mike Pritchard. His singing, songwriting and performing capabilities are woven into the fabric of our West Texas community. You could say a lot of things about Mike … he was a consummate professional; he was someone that could be counted on to perform and sing in almost any venue where he was needed.
If you were around him much in the musician community you would know that he was appreciated and respected for his talent and/or friendship. In regards to all the things that I have just said, he was a real “what you see is what you get” kind of guy. I liked him and I guess I always did. If you were walking in to spend the evening somewhere, and you found out that Mike Pritchard would be singing, it was a good thing.
Anyone who tried to put Mike Pritchard’s music style in a box with a label would be hard pressed to keep the lid shut. He sang and wrote great music for a lot of different occasions. He and Wally Moyers had recently produced some great country music. Mike was always a rock and roll guy at heart and could walk on stage with a six piece band and blow the roof off. But lately … he was sounding much more soulful and blues-like, but it was always enjoyable.
Our visit with Mike Pritchard occurred on Episode 34. He was absolutely candid and talked personally with our listeners. For me it was simple. I was just talking with an old friend. In Episode 57 of our Free Range Texan Podcast we step back and revisit the last time we thoroughly enjoyed Mike Pritchard’s stories and talent. Thank you Mike (he always called me Mikey) for this one last time you shared you life and your music. Brother, we will see you down the way ….
We first introduced Matt Westin in Episode 37. We knew then that we absolutely wanted him to return to our Free Range Texan Podcast. When we have a guest like Matt … who demonstrates style, good looks, and talent … many times we are just letting enough water go under the bridge so that we can update our audience on a continually growing career.
Another thing that we know about Matt Westin … he is always a great interview. I always have a goal to relax an artist early in an interview so that they talk comfortably about their personal thoughts, ranging from their family, their careers, or the back story on a great piece of music. The word I would use for Matt Westin is genuine. I have never once felt that he was putting on airs. Instead, what you see is what you get.
Matt is starring in a full-length motion picture, “116 McDougal”, where he plays the character of Johnny Cash. Production was slowed down by COVID last year, but we understand that at least two of the musical pieces for the movie are Matt Westin releases, and production is now ramping up. We wanted to include one of Matt’s recently released videos here in the blog. “Hey Bro” is just another one of several that is achieving noteworthy success over seas and here in north America alike.
If you’re getting the sense that I like Matt Westin as a recording artist and/or a person that I always look forward to visiting with, you’d be right. Free Range Texan Podcast Episode 56 features a song called, “Thin Blue Line”, and the moment we heard it, I knew it was time to bring Matt Westin back to the Free Range Texan. I’m glad he was available. We are proud of him as a featured guest and as a friend.
Free Range Texan Episode 55 titled, “I’m OK”, is the message that I would have for all of you. It is from the bottom of my heart that I want to thank all of our listeners for the constant stream of inquiries and prayers.
Please let me apologize for the time I have spent being unresponsive to so many of you. Now I am able to share my story, and tell you that with great effort, I have only just now found the ability to focus on creating this latest episode, after months of being off the radar.
Rather than explaining everything here, I would just like to ask everyone to listen to Episode 55. I have chosen our Free Range Texan Podcast as the place I can most easily relate my story. Thank you all for being patient. It appears “We’re Back”.
We never really realized the time and the effort it would take to replace a producer like Michael Shawn, even temporarily. That’s the thing. We have not spent a lot of time looking for a Michael Shawn replacement because we had not imagined being without him. Well, he is sitting up and speaking … well speaking anyway, and Free Range Texan is releasing the following statement concerning his condition. Keep him in your thoughts and prayers.
Gypsy Jayne is an energizing shot of pure passion … country, jazz, gospel and rock, and you’re just beginning to scratch the surface. A soulful singer, somewhat reminiscent of artists such as Janis Joplin and Grace Slick. While it’s all true, enough of the stuff that’s on her bio.
I first met Gypsy Jayne personally when we visited at our Studio on Episode 28. I found her to be warm, friendly, genuine, and a lot of the things she is not once she steps on stage. Don’t miss understand what I’m saying … I like her, yet I am amazed at how a stage performance or a recording studio booking brings out her pirate persona. It’s a good thing … sitting in the audience you will be amazed.
We like to think of Gypsy Jayne as a friend. She is easy to like, and with the help of her writing partner, Mike Burk, she is doing some phenomenal and soulful recordings. There are a lot of sides to Gypsy Jayne, but on her latest album she rocks! and we’re pleased to debut it on the Free Range Texan.
Booking and contact information: 806-680-1326; gypsyjayne.com.
I think by and large she has been overlooked long enough. That’s why she is our special guest on the Free Range Texan Podcast Episode 53. Enjoy as she “Rolls Your Blues Away.”
Songwriters, recording artists, musicians, and entertainers … I’ve been talking to them, working around them, and interviewing them all of my life. There are certain characteristics that they all have in common. But once you get past all that, you find the real differences from one artist to the next. Any person with the least bit of talent can carry on a conversation in an interview and manage to be pleasant for half an hour or so. But you figure it out pretty quick, sometimes immediately and sometimes over time, what they are really all about. You see, everybody wants to be a star, most have something to contribute, but it is a rare moment when you come across real professionals that make what I do a pleasure … folks like Anthony Crawford and Savana Lee, the main counterparts of SugarCane Jane.
The Washington Times says, “an album that deserves to be at the top of the critics list.” Vintage Guitar Magazine has written “one of the liveliest, most engaging, Americana CDs your likely to hear this or any year.” Anthony and Savana’s interview on our Podcast Free Range Talent File left me wondering why they had not been on our radar all along.
Anthony has played alongside such greats as Neil Young, Steve Winwood, and Dwight Yoakam, and now, thanks to a worldwide pandemic, two of the nicest and most professional people I have had the pleasure to visit with are spending a lot of time at home with their wonderful family. Like so many others, they are figuring things out.
In case you haven’t picked up on it yet, I genuinely like Anthony Crawford and Savana Lee. Their talented stage performances and inspired music writing are something I will watch for now and in the future. Their latest album, Ruffled Feathers: Songs in the Key of Me is just more of the great music that SugarCane Jane fans have come to expect from this great couple.
I am genuinely excited that the Free Range Texan Podcast has our spotlight centered on SugarCane Jane in Episode 52. It is not to be missed.
I think if I were to choose one word to describe my initial conversation with Gary Burk III, the word would be “fresh”. He’s one of those artists that is willing to think outside the box while struggling to play and record the music that he loves.
So understand this, like so many other of our guests on Free Range Texan, I went through his professional management group (MTS … one of the best) and arranged to receive his music, promotional pictures, and biographic information, while setting up a time for our interview. That means that when we talk for the first time, it is the first time we have ever actually met. Not just anyone can be cordial, open and at ease in a first time meeting. Gary Burk III aced it and shared not only his music, but his personal thoughts as well.
Behind the scenes our production staff keeps a list … it’s just for us. We call it “the ones to watch” list. After visiting with Gary Burk III and hearing his music that he achieves in the studio, and finally watching the video presented here on our blog, Gary Burk III has clearly been added to our list of ones to watch. We wish you all the best Gary and thank you for being on Episode 51 of our Free Range Texan Podcast.