Get To Know Your DOMAXXIII Nominees: Best Folk Act, Best Venue, Best Record Store

Welcome to our 2011 Dallas Observer Music Awards breakdown, wherein we'll use the weeks leading up to the DOMA showcases on Saturday, October 15 (which is also when voting ends), to explain the nominees in each category Today, we look at the nominees in the Best Folk Act, Best Venue, and Best Record Store categories and see how each of these nominees got to this point. Read up on them, follow the links to hear their music and, if you're impressed, shoot the band some support in the first of a text vote sent to 61721 (see codes for each band below their names).

Best Folk Act

The Beaten Sea
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Why They're Here:

The 2010 self-titled record from The Beaten Sea immediately solidified the band's place near the top of the folk food chain here in town. Live, The Beaten Sea reaffirms that belief. Their shows are intimate and engaging, and the hooks that fill their songs will be in your head for weeks.

Doug Burr
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Why He's Here: Doug Burr is another artist on the Spune roster that's had a relatively quiet year. Though, being familiar with the somber and pensive songwriter's music, you'd have to assume he's working on yet another brilliant folk album. 

Dust Congress
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Why They're Here: Denton's Dust Congress, a member of the Paperstain Records family, is a well-orchestrated, quiet act, that often trades shows with bands like Fox & The Bird.    

Fox & The Bird
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Why They're Here: Fox & The Bird's new record, Floating Feather, has been met with a warm reception. It's a fairly straightforward folk record, heavy on vocal harmonies and the use of a saw as an instrument. Listen: If you're gonna play folk in Deep Ellum, you gotta have a saw in the band. 

Sarah Jaffe
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Why She's Here: If you don't already know, you better ask somebody.

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Why They're Here: Lots of vocal harmonies, unconventional instruments and emotions go into Seryn's music. The band puts on a great live show, and this year's record This Is Where We Are was met with critical praise both locally and nationally.

Best Venue

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Why They're Here:

Dada wasn't always a great venue. Sure, it had loads of history, but the sightlines and sound in the room were atrocious until this year when Josh Florence completely gutted the place. The vibe is still the same, though; the raw brick walls keep the history in tact. Only, now, you can actually enjoy a show there.

Dan's Silverleaf
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Why They're Here: Dan's is easily the best place to see a show in Denton. The wide room almost wraps around the large, semi-circle stage, making every vantage point a good one. And the shows that get booked in the bar keep it pretty full on the regular.

Granada Theater
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Why They're Here: Even though the Granada Theater has only been owned by Mike Schoder for the last seven years, the place has a lot of history. Over that time, they've had some of the most memorable shows that have come through town. 

House Of Blues
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Why They're Here: The House Of Blues is a corporate venue, sure. But, as far as production value goes, it's hard to beat. Great vantage points from any seat in the house, and, for the most part, the sound is impeccable.

Kessler Theater
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Why They're Here: The Kessler is the newest venue on this list, but it's already established itself as one of the top venues in town. The space, built into a 70-year-old structure, is serene, intimate and clean. And the shows booked here are great.

Sons of Hermann Hall
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Why They're Here: Sons of Hermann Hall, originally as a fraternity house for the Sons of Hermann, has gone virtually untouched since it was built. And, this year, the building celebrated its 100th anniversary. A lot of the original fixtures remain in place, including the stage, on which local and touring acts perform every weekend.

Best Record Store

Bill's Records & Tapes
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Why They're Here:

A trip to Bill's Records could easily take an entire day. You'll either get stuck perusing his extensive collection, full of imports and rarities, or you'll chat with Bill, who has acquired loads of great music stories. 

CD Source
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Why They're Here: Having a hard time paying your rent? Bring you collection of CDs over to CD Source and see what you can get for 'em. The place has long held a reputation as the best place to dump your personal stock in Dallas. Plus, chances are, while you wait to see what you're getting paid for your used discs, you'll find an entirely new collection of records to take home.

Good Records
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Why They're Here: For over 10 years now, Good Records has been more than just a place to buy music. It's a legit hangout. Great in-store performances from local and national acts grace the astro-turf covered stage each month, and, every Monday, the store screens new and old rock 'n' roll movies on their projection screen.

Forever Young Records
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Why They're Here: Forever Young Records boasts the largest collection of vinyl in the region. It's a huge warehouse in Arlington specifically dedicated to the medium. They've also got CDs, tapes and loads of rock 'n' roll memorabilia.

Mad World Records
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Why They're Here: The newest record store to grace this list, Mad World Records offers Dentonites a more discerning collection of music from which to choose, located on the Denton square.

Recycled Books, Records & CDs
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Why They're Here: Until this year, Recycled Books, Records & CDs was the only place in Denton to get new and used music, making it a great resource for broke college kids. The selection is wide, so make sure you have plenty of time to kill.

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