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USA 2015
~LUCKENBACH, TX~

Copyright Ruud Leeuw Photos © R.Leeuw

While I found the number of live gigs I was able to attend in this area a bit disappointing, there is always the history trail. A visit to Luckenbach was therefor a must, as we were driving north from San Antonio to Abilene. A very charming place indeed, and I would love to return some day for some live music here.

 

Luckenbach,TX
Luckenbach is located some 13 miles (19 km) south from Fredericksburg, in southeastern Gillespie County.
It is part of the socalled Texas Hill Country. Luckenbach is known as a venue for country music!

Today Luckenbach maintains a ghost-town feel with its small population and strong western aesthetic.
One of its two main buildings houses the remnants of a post office, a working saloon, and a general store.
The other is the dance hall.

Luckenbach,TX

On 15Dec1847 a petition was submitted to create Gillespie County. In 1848, the Texas Legislature formed Gillespie County from Bexar and Travis counties. The signers were overwhelmingly German immigrants.
Its oldest building is a combination general store and saloon reputedly opened in 1849 (1886 is more likely based on land improvement records of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission) by Minna Engel, whose father was an itinerant minister from Germany.
The community, first named Grape Creek, was later named after Engel's husband, Carl Albert Luckenbach, who was then her fiancé.
Luckenbach's population increased to a high of 492 in 1904, but by the 1960s, it was almost a ghost town.

A newspaper advertisement offering "town — pop. 3 — for sale" led Hondo Crouch, a rancher and Texas folklorist, to buy Luckenbach for $30,000 in 1970, in partnership with Kathy Morgan and actor Guich Koock.
Crouch used the town's rights as a municipality to govern the dance hall as he saw fit.
[Wikipedia]

 

Luckenbach,TX

Luckenbach's association with country music began in the summer of 1973 when Jerry Jeff Walker, backed by the Lost Gonzo Band, recorded the live album Viva Terlingua at the Luckenbach dance hall.
Four years later (and a year after Crouch's death), Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson memorialized Luckenbach with the song "Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)".

In his 2000 book Are You Ready for the Country?, author Peter Doggett recalls that Jennings later told audiences that "..he hated the song and (had) admitted The guys that wrote the thing have never been to Luckenbach. Neither have I".
Jennings eventually played a show in Luckenbach on 04Jul1997.
[Wikipedia]

 

Luckenbach,TX
Modern times. But I forgot to check if it was for real!

 

 

Luckenbach,TX
The iconic armadillo plays his music here.
The armadillo became the Austin city animal; songs such as Gary P. Nunn's 'London Homesick Blues' (which includes
in the chorus I want to go home with the armadillo) made this a staple of Austin. The artist who
began the Armadillo logo was Jim Franklin, who is still working today (2015).

Luckenbach,TX
The stage is set.. for tourists.

 

 

Luckenbach,TX
Sure would like to see and hear some live music played here!

Luckenbach,TX

Luckenbach,TX
One could sit here all day and keep discovering new things.

Luckenbach,TX

Luckenbach,TX

Luckenbach,TX

Luckenbach,TX

 

 

 

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