Well my intention was to take 281 from New Braunfels to Stephenville and after asking for directions i was told i had to go to Austin first to get on 281, well some how i missed my exit and ended up taking 29 from the Round Rock area over to Burnet. I arrived at Melody Mountain Ranch in the afternoon and went through the gates and met up with my friend Jeff Mack who has been a sponsor and videographer for the Larry Joe Taylor festival off and on over the years and this year he was in charge of running the video feeds to the jumbotron on either side of the stage. There was not a lot for me to do while he was getting things in order so i just walked around on the grounds before the mayhem started. Tuesday was much of the same throughout the day until people started showing up, i ran into some friends like the crew of Winding Roads Music. Later i helped out Rick Lovett by operating a video camera while we went to Larry Joe Taylor's house and picked him up in a limo and drove him back to the festival site, Rick interviewed Larry along the way. In the afternoon James Lann and Ryan Turner started things off in the City Limits tent and Tuesday night is always a laid back acoustic concert for less than 500 people around a campfire and this year it was kicked of by none other than Radney Foster.One memorable moment was when Josh Abbott appeared from the side of the stage and passed on his award from the Texas Regional Radio Music Awards to Radney for his song "Angel Flight" written about the soldiers of the Red River 44 and the crew that brought them back home. Radney also performed "Its Already Tomorrow" which is a new song with Bill Lloyd and the two are reunited as again as the duo Foster & Lloyd. Later in the evening Matt Martindale, Dave Perez (Tejas Brothers) Deryl Dodd and Larry Joe himself traded songs well into the evening.
Later i listened to stories traded back and forth between the crew of Winding Road Music and called it a night.
Wednesday is when things start to build momentum at LJT. Things started off with Cody Riley and Jed Zimmerman in the City Limits tent and the main stage kicked off with Six Market Blvd and James Hertless bass player for the Josh Abbott band singing the National Anthem followed by local KHYI battle of the bands winners The Troubaderos. I did not have access for any of the shows on Tuesday until later in the evening so i tried to shoot a few shots from on stage but i wasn't happy with what i got and i would post a few here but they were part of the casualties suffered in a hard drive crash after i returned home.
The rest of the days line up was fantastic with The Turnpike Troubadours, Mark McKinney, Rich O'Toole, Bart Crow, Kevin Fowler, Stoney LaRue and the stellar return of Pat Green who has not played a show at LJT since 2000.
Stoney was sporting a ball cap instead of his trademark bandana and has a new stripped down band sans Steve Littleton who went on to join the Departed and Jeremy Watkins who moved onto Jason Boland & The Stragglers.Casey Twist was filling in on bass guitar.
Pat Green stole the show singing his familiar anthems of the Lone Star state
with Ben Danaher on guitar and sharing the mic later in the show with Josh Abbott,
Kevin Fowler and Larry Joe Taylor and an appearance by Tommy Alverson on guitar......
...Beer was being slung everywhere and no one cared but i wasn't about to waste good beer so i did what most people do and drank it. I found my way to the Red Se7en entertainment acoustic stage and met a lot of new friends like Matt Wayne and Ryan Turner and i ended up playing percussion with Ryan on a five gallon bucket and someone has that on video so if you do, send me a link. Matt Wayne was around the whole festival and i kept running into him and i was really impressed by his song writing and powerful voice. I don't know what time i went to bed and i am sitting here having to rewrite parts of this because i didn't remember it too well but i think i got it right finally.