Randy’s Song Review: Texas Dance Halls by The Jack Nelson Band
Jack Nelson is an up and coming Texas Country Artist who hails from Corpus Christi Bay originally, and first picked up the guitar at only four years old. He spent his childhood playing along with his father’s Tejano band and with his brother, Cameron, who is himself a Texas Music Chart Topper and won the 2014 TMA Male Vocalist of the Year.
After four years serving in the US Navy, (Thank You for your service, Jack), Jack decided to get back into music and, after playing many one man acoustic shows around Texas, formed a group of local musicians around him. Together, they have supported/opened for Tracy Byrd, Bart Crow and Josh Ward amongst many others.
This track, Texas Dance Halls, is an upbeat country number in the classic style, with a slight tinge of rock thrown in to keep it modern; from Let ‘er Buck!, his latest album. It has an infectious energy that makes it perfect to dance to, and you can imagine everyone two-stepping and boot stomping.
Jack Nelson has a strong voice and is ably backed up by his band, with some lovely fiddle lines and sweet sounding lead guitar. The lead lines are mostly played with a light, creamy tone then switches to a sound with a little more bite for the succinct guitar solo. Lyrically, it’s like the country music equivalent of The Beach Boys classic Surfin’ USA, in the way that Jack shows his Gulf Coast roots and cleverly lists the major Texas Dance Halls to 12-bar blues chord changes. How many Texas Dance Halls can you count that are listed in the song? (I’m intentionally not quoting lines from the song to prevent me from giving away some of the listed Dance Halls.)
Overall, this song shows off Jack’s love for Texas Dance Halls and respect for Texas music. It’s a smart idea for a song and performed with equanimity by Jack Nelson and his band. With flawless production, it is as perfectly suited to radio as it is to the dance halls, and it seems inevitable that Jack will follow in the footsteps of his older brother and find great success.
Jack commemorates his latest radio single “Texas Dance Halls” with a music video where he drives across Texas documenting many of the Texas Dance Halls. How many? I won’t say…