Chris Picks

Each week Chris brings you the best in music, dance, arts and entertainment opportunities in Austin and surrounding areas.


Thursday, September 21, 2006

RIP Don Walser

September 21-27
I'm sure you've heard the news by now -- Don Walser passed away yesterday afternoon. Funeral arrangements are still pending, so keep your eyes and ears open.

I remember back in the early 90s a Danish friend was visiting and she wanted me to take her somewhere truly Texan, so I took her to Henry's on a night when Don was playing (remember Henry's?) What could be more Texan than that?

And I remember the time in 1993 when I was flying home from Europe on Swiss Air -- I picked up the listing of music channels and decided to plug into some Swiss folk music when I saw Don's name on the line-up. Huh? Yup, it was Don himself, singing the "Yodel Polka". There was an intro on the music channel that told about his ancestors coming to the US from Switzerland and how Don had continued the Swiss yodeling tradition but with a distinctly Texas flair. I gave Don the printed Swiss Air program one night at the Broken Spoke and it made him so proud. He must have shown it to at least a dozen folks that night during one of his "wee wee breaks."

I'm sure that many of you readers have your own stories about Don. I'd love it if you'd share them in the comments section down at the bottom of today's post. Just click on the link that says '# comments' and it will direct you to a place where you can share your stories.

Don was the real deal, and the Austin music scene lost a great man when he had to retire from the stage. Rest well, Don; you've certainly earned it.


Bayou Cajun Band
Cypress Grill / 4404 W. William Cannon / 6:30 pm (family)

The Hummingbirds
Carousel Lounge / 1110 E. 52nd, 452-6790
I believe this is an early show, but you might want to call to confirm.

Fabulous Chevelles
Guero's / 1412 S. Congress; 447-7688 / 6:30 pm (family)
This music will put a nostalgic smile on your face for sure!

DJd Swing Dance
The Fed / 24th at San Gabriel; 8pm

Broken Spoke / 3201 S. Lamar; 442-6189

Manual's / 10201 Jollyville Road; 345-1042

Cipollina / 1213 West Lynn; 477-5211 / 8-10 pm

Lucky Strikes
Treehouse Italian Grill / 2201 College; 443-4200 / 7:30 pm

Cornell Hurd
Jovita’s / 1619 S. 1st, 447-7825 / 8 pm (family)

Two Hoots & a Holler
Ego’s / 510 S. Congress; 474-7091 / 11 pm


Polka Freak Out
Jovita's / 1619 S. 1st; 447-7825 / 8 pm
This is another of Bubba Hernandez' projects, so it's bound to be good.

Seth Walker
Central Market / 4001 N. Lamar; 206-1000 / 6:30 pm

Jim Stringer's AM Band
Brentwood Tavern / 6701 Burnet Road; 420-8118 / 6:30
And there's room to dance on the patio!

Two Tons of Steel
Broken Spoke / 3201 S. Lamar; 442-6189

Geno Delafose & French Rockin' Boogie
Continental Club /1315 S. Congress;441-2444 / 10:00 pm

Lucky Strikes
Reed's Jazz Club / 9901 Cap of TX Hwy; 342-7977 / 8:30 pm

Argentine Tango Evening
Texas Union Building (Quadrangle Room) / 24th at Guadalupe / 6:30 pm - 1 am
What an opportunity! For those of you who have been wanting to learn tango but find that most of the workshops are for intermediate dancers -- this is for you. There will be a class for absolute beginners from 6:30 - 8:00 followed by a DJd milonga from 8-1. Now's your chance! And there's plenty of room in this venue, so you'll actually have space to practice what you've learned!

Fabulous Chevelles
Aunt Tilly's Island Cafe and Bar / 16410 Stewart Rd; 266-0331
This is one of the coolest 60s cover bands anywhere!


Land of the Feathered Serpent
Santa Cruz Center for Culture / 1805 E. 7th; 474-TIXS (family)
Final weekend for Aztlan Dance Company's fall performance. Shows are at 8 pm on Fri & Sat; 2 pm on Sun.


Ridgetop Syncopators
Artz Ribhouse / 2230 S. Lamar; 442-8283 / 6 pm (family)

Will Taylor with Strings Attached
Nutty Brown /12225 Hwy 290 West; 301-4648
They're doing a repeat of their tremendously successful "White Album" performance.
Click here for tickets. I got mine! See you there?

Hoedown II
Jovita’s / 1619 S. 1st, 447-7825 / 6 pm (family)
This is a fundraiser for KOOP Radio to help them build their new studio. Lots of great music by folks like Twangzilla, The Piney Grove Ramblers, and more, more, more. Suggested donation is $5 and that is waaaaaaaaaaay cheap.

La Piazza Italiana (Italian Festival)
Wooldridge Park / 9th & Guadalupe / 11 am - 7 pm; free (family)
Food, music, art & bocce.

Brazilian Festival
Central Market / 4001 N. Lamar; 206-1000 / 6:00 pm (family)
Music, dancing, food, capoeira, fun.

Albert & Gage Band
Donn's Depot / 1600 W. 5th; 478-0336

White Ghost Shivers
Continental Club /1315 S. Congress;441-2444 / midnight


Santiago Jimenez, Jr.
Fiesta Gardens / 2101 Bergman / 5 pm (family)
Aaaaaaaaggggghhhh! I am soooooo bummed! When's the last time Santiago played in Austin? So long ago that I don't even remember. And now he's going to be here for a Sunday tardeada and I'll be out of town. Not fair, not fair, not fair!!!!!!! Enjoy it for me.

The Brew
The Oasis / 6550 Comanche Trail 266-2442

Continental Club / 1315 S. Congress; 441-2444 / 10:30 pm


Paris 49
Continental Club /1315 S. Congress;441-2444 / 6:30 pm

Bayou Cajun Band
Evangeline Cafe / 8106 Brodie Lane; 282-2586 / 6:30 pm(family)


Marc Devine & Denia Ridley
Reed's Jazz Club / 9901 Cap of TX Hwy; 342-7977 / 6:30 pm

DJd Swing Dance
The Fed / 24th at San Gabriel / 9:45 / no cover
Free dance after Four on the Floor’s classes.

Erik Hokkanen's Laboratory
Flipnotics / 1601 Barton Springs; 322-9750 / 8:00 pm

Jovita’s / 1619 S. 1st, 447-7825 / 8 pm (family)


Seth Walker
Jovita's / 1619 S. 1st; 447-7825 / 8 pm

Gulf Coast Playboys
La Palapa /Hwy 290 @ Cameron Road / 7:30 pm
Don't know if there's a dance floor, but the music certainly demands it!

Cella Blue
Broken Spoke / 3201 S. Lamar; 442-6189


Lakehills, TX
Medina Lake Cajun Festival / Lakehills Civic Center / 11:30am - 10pm
Lots of good food, of course, and live music by Kevin Naquin and the Ossun Playboys; Rodney Thibodeaux & Tout les Soir; T-Salé; Geno Delafose & French Rockin' Boogie
and the Band-Aids Jazz Band.

Serbin, TX
Wendish Festival / St. Paul's Lutheran Church
Polka and noodles, mmm. And sausage. And desserts. Music by the Kovanda Czech Band. Serbin is really close to Giddings, in case you were wondering.


Brave Combo / Continental Club / 1315 S. Congress; 441-2444 / 7 pm
I don't believe it! A Brave Combo show I can finally, finally, finally see! It's been waaaaaaaaaay too long! I've got it on my calendar in ink.

Mediterranean Festival / St. Elias Eastern Orthodox Church / 408 E. 11th / 6pm-midnight (family)
This year will feature Zein al Jundi with the Saadi Mnawwar Band playing all your Arabic faves and Ikon playing Greek music. And of course there's the food. And the activities for the kids. And the belly dancing. And the lovely Otober weather, ah.

FRIDAYS & SATURDAYS, OCT 6 & 7, 13 & 14:
We Are Normal, Cha Cha Chaaa / Clear Spring Studio / 605 Copeland (just off S. 1st across the street from the School for the Deaf) / 8 pm
This is Yellowtape Construction Company's (the folks who brought you "I Love My Dead Gay Son: The Musical:) fall offering, billed as a 'dance epic' with tons of feathers and some kick-ass dancing. Make your reservations today by calling 512.466.5221 or e-mailing

International Accordion Festival / La Villita, San Antonio
Put this one on your calendars now. It is simply THE best.

See ya on the dance floor,


PS. Don't forget to share your Don Walser memories in the comments section.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fred Noelke told me yesterday,"You remember that I call Don my spiritual advisor , right?"
"Of course ,I do." I answered.
"He is my Boot-a. He is the reason I am a practicing Boot-ist." from Kathryn

7:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My first time hearing Don Walser was at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar...his music seemed to make everyone feel happy, and he was absolutely charming. Loved his yodelling style! When I heard the news on the radio, it stung me. A little bit of Austin's heart has gone to heaven...and what a wonder addition to the choir.

7:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Irish Wolfhound? Christy Foster

9:30 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home