Lubbock legends The Flatlanders released one quietly revolutionary eight-track in 1972 before scattering to the wind, with Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock all going on to successful solo careers. Rounder's 1990 reissue of the band's sole album coincided nicely with the rise of the alternative country movement, with acts like Uncle Tupelo and Richard Buckner citing them as an influence, but it took another decade for the Flatlanders to reunite for another LP, 2002's Now Again. Since then, Ely, Gilmore and Hancock have made up for lost time, releasing two more studio records and an unearthed '72 live set while touring to packed theaters across the U.S. and Europe. Sure, they're older and grayer now, but that's what makes them great storytellers. And when their voices combine in three-part harmony, you can hear the weight of all that experience--Ely's time in the circus and years of hard touring, Gilmore's deep exploration of Eastern religion and philosophy, Hancock's many years in Terlingua dodging the West Texas wind, etc.--in every damn note. They also wrote the greatest song ever written about our fair city--"Have you ever seen Dallas from a DC9 at night?/Dallas is a jewel, yeah, Dallas is a beautiful sight"--so there's that. Hear for yourself when the legends take the stage 8 p.m. Thursday at the Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave. Dallas Wayne and Charlie Shafter open the show. Tickets are $30 to $45. Visit granadatheater.com.
Thu., July 29, 2010