Best Of Dallas

The Dallas-Fort Worth Music Bucket List

Dallas hasn't always done the best job of appreciating its musical culture, but music history runs deep in this city. Sure, concert venues and bands have come and gone; hell, even Deep Ellum has been all but lost on more than one occasion. So it's important that we appreciate all the great things Dallas and the greater North Texas music scene have to offer while we have chance. What are the absolute must-have experiences for any local music fan to earn their stripes? Start out with these 50.
1. Hear stories about Nirvana playing Trees from Jeff Liles.

2. Go record shopping with George Gimarc.

3. Spend some time with Bob Crawford, or even give him a ride home.

5. Have Paul Slavens make up a song for you on the spot.

6. Attend a house show in Denton.

7. Then book your own house show in Denton.

8. Listen to jazz and eat roasted corn and turkey legs at Arts & Jazz Fest.

9. See Erykah Badu play with the Cannabinoids.

10. Pay tribute to Dimebag Darrell at his grave in Arlington.
11. Get your ass kicked (literally, if you want) by a Power Trip show.

12. See Willie Nelson perform at Billy Bob's Texas.

13. Catch a local Slobberbone and Old 97's double bill.

14. Scribble your name on the walls inside Adair's in black marker.

15. Be a suburban lawn-chair warrior at the Bedford Blues Festival on Labor Day Weekend.

16. Drink a bucket of Shiner Bock during Shiner Sundays at Love and War in Texas.

17. Party in the parking lot of Good Records on Record Store Day.

18. Go to Gorilla vs. Bear Fest, whether you’ve heard of the bands or not.

19. Catch a show under the stars at Annette Strauss Square.

20. Get pre-game drinks at Sundown, go to a concert at Granada, then go back to Sundown for post-game drinks on the same night.
21. See an all-Texas lineup at Homegrown Festival.

22. Go show-hopping in the Fort Worth Stockyards.

23. And get your DIY fix at 1919 Hemphill.

24. Eat chicken on an outdoor couch during a free show at the Foundry.

25. Catch a hot new act's secret show at Twilite Lounge.

26. Pretend to be a rock star at Good Luck Karaoke.

27. Pay $3 for a Red Bull Sound Select show.

28. Find a free — yes, free — parking spot in Deep Ellum.

29. Complete the Fry Street Crawl.

30. Check out the art upstairs at The Kessler (or try to go viral with a crazy rant outside the show).
31. Think about driving to Denton for a festival, but go to Deep Ellum instead because you don't want to deal with I-35.

32. Do the same thing with Fort Worth, but with I-30 instead.

33. Go Crate Dating at Off the Record.

34. Book a show for your birthday party.

35. Get hammered in a VIP section.

36. Mentally dress the guys in Unconscious Collective.

37. Drink literally 100 beers at an Untapped Festival.

38. Contemplate life in a cult at a Polyphonic Spree show.

39. Take your parents to see A Hard Night’s Day.

40. See a show at J&J's Pizza in Denton.
41. Attend Free Week at Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studio.

42. Splurge a whole paycheck on expensive limited press vinyl at Dead Wax Records.

43. Request your favorite song on KNON and wait an hour to listen to it.

44. For every concert in Deep Ellum, get a slice of pizza from a different Deep Ellum pizza place.

45. Play pool, listen to the jukebox and count the local musicians after midnight at Lakewood Landing.

46. Attend a Girls Rock Dallas showcase.

47. Climb onstage at Trees during an Ishi show and dance with JT Mudd.

48. Witness (or participate in) the hen dance at R.L.’s Blues Palace.

49. Go see the building where Robert Johnson recorded, preferably with a music buff to provide commentary.

50. See a show at The Bomb Factory and be glad it came back from the dead.
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Dallas Observer Music Staff

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