Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Tim O'Connor's venue under the trees - The Backyard, officially closed with a tremendous concert on a perfect night Sunday, headlined by Willie Nelson.

There's some sadness, certainly, as The Backyard has lost what you might call its 'innocence' to the barrage of concrete encroachers which surround it now. Still, those beautiful oaks live on, having absorbed so much energy from the talent beneath their spread. May they continue.

Tim is apparently being somewhat circumspect about future plans - will he or won't he build the eco-friendly new larger site almost across the street, between 620 and 71? Does he feel the collective weight of the hundreds of shows he's wrangled? (Make no mistake, there are many, MANY details which must be attended to for EVERY show, each circumstance crying for attention.)

We arrived in time for Kelly Willis for whom I admit fandom.

Others performed through the cool air, but Willie, in his 30 somethingth Backyard performance, showed those in attendance what a honest-to-God American icon IS. For the time we have to enjoy his Austin area presence, when not on the road or in Maui, we are blessed. His songwriting alone places him in rarefied air (no, not a smoke joke.) His song stylings and guitar playing take him to another orbit.

Our hope is that Tim will rebuild. And that Willie will open the new place.

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