Hill Country Live Presents:

Music Calendar

SOLD OUT - Hayes Carll - SOLD OUT

Also Featuring: Curtis McMurtry Friday 09/15
Show: 9:00PM
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This show will be a general admission, non-seated show. Dinner reservations are not available for show time and can only be made in our main dining room upstairs.

Hayes Carll

Hayes Carll

Failure has always been a favorite topic of Texas troubadour Hayes Carll. Much of the songwriting catalog he's built up over the last dozen-plus years revolves around dashed dreams, doomed romance and drunken predicaments. Very often, though, he's leavened the losing with cleverly deployed gallows humor, self-deprecation and yarn spinning, linking his work to his native state's tradition of wryly winning musical wit, a writing trait he shares with Guy Clark, Robert Earl Keen, Lyle Lovett and even Miranda Lambert. Some of Carll's most beloved hits — to the extent that there is such a thing in the singer-songwriter and Americana scenes that he straddles — features situational humor and hooky punch lines delivered over shambling, down-home grooves in a fractured twang that plays up a badly sprained ego. There was the honky-tonk lament of a newly minted Jesus freak's jealous husband ("She Left Me For Jesus"), the fumbling flirtation of bar flies with diametrically opposed political convictions ("Another Like You"), and the talking-blues ballad of a hapless young soldier recruited by the Pentagon for a special mission ("KMAG YOYO"), among many other droll crowd-pleasers. While Carll has delved into unchecked melancholy on occasion — his eloquently self-pitying weeper "Chances Are" inspired a Lee Ann Womack cover — he's been fairly quiet about his pensive side, until now. Carll's first album in half a decade, the Joe Henry-produced Lovers and Leavers, strikes a heavier tone. The press release accompanying the new music includes his preemptive warning that it "isn't funny or raucous," that "[t]here are very few hoots and almost no hollers." The guy's not kidding. "The Love That We Need," written with Jack Ingram and Allison Moorer, sets the tone. Accompanied by fingerpicked guitar figures, soft chord changes on piano and bass, and the muffled rustling of percussion, it feels like a glimpse into an excruciatingly intimate conversation that's been put off as long as possible, a sighing surrender to the atrophying connection between partners. Carll's deftly plainspoken verses and deflated phrasing perfectly captures the numbing effects of being swept along by the level rhythms of habit. "You say, 'I love you,'" he offers. "I say, 'Me too.' We don't think much about it. It's just a thing that we do." Depicting failure of such a private, ordinary variety, without any colorful exaggeration or comic relief, is an exacting art. Turns out Carll's excellent at it

Also Featuring:

Curtis McMurtry

Curtis McMurtry writes about villains that think they're victims. Influenced by Fiona Apple, Billy Strayhorn and Leonard Cohen, Curtis' music combines piercing lyrics with lush chords and unusual arrangements. His first solo album Respectable Enemy was released in August 2014, and drew comparisons to Calexico and John Fullbright. His sophomore album The Hornet's Nest is was released in February 2017, and continues to garner critical acclaim.

Curtis was born and raised in Austin, Texas and grew up listening to local musicians Warren Hood, Ephraim Owens, Seela, and his father, James McMurtry. Curtis studied music composition and ethnomusicology in college, primarily writing contemporary chamber music for banjo and strings. After graduation, Curtis moved to Nashville to sharpen his songwriting by co-writing with elder statesmen including Fred Koller and Guy Clark. He has since moved back to Austin where he performs as a quartet with cellist Diana Burgess (of Mother Falcon), upright bassist Taylor Turner (of Magia Negra) and trumpeter Nathan Calzada.

"Simply put, at 23, McMurtry's dark and deep debut solo album, Respectable Enemy, marks him as a world-class talent who not just stands on his own merits, but soars on them."
- Thomas Gerbasi, New York Examiner

"The second album by McMurtry shows its conceptual ambition in the way it coheres, exploring a range of emotions through a variety of personae. From the vulnerable innocence of the opening “Hard Blue Stones” through the corpse picked clean on the closing “Silver World,” the 13-song cycle shimmers through the desires and flaws of a shared humanity. ." - Don McLeese, No Depression