All posts by Ilfusion

Backstage Notes: May 2015

Jon Wolfe returned for out Thursday Night Live series jus as his current single was breaking into the Top 10 on the Texas Chart. His no nonsense Country music brought out a good crowd.

Kacey Musgraves made her main stage debut here but she’s no stranger to BBT or the Stockyards. In her words” One Sunday every month for as long as I can remember, my sister and I came in our red bandanas and sang on these steps with a kid’s western singing group called The Buckaroos. We were encouraged to yodel, learn instruments, and all the old Country & Western Swing standards and would stroll the Stockyards singing for people. She’s also performed at BBT with The Josh Abbott Band and some acoustic song swaps. It was great seeing her “Same Tour Different Trailer” tour and visiting with her family, especially her Mom and Grandmother. She took the whole family up to the Honky Tonk Stage to watch most of the set of opener Humming House.

Jason Boland & The Stragglers have been playing here since their first release back in 1999. They’ve released eight other albums since then. One of our favorites is still the “Live At BBT” album recorded here in 2002.

We hosted our first Cinco de Mayo celebration with an indoor/outdoor festival that included Ray Reyna, Stampede, Latin Express, David Lee Garza, Emilio Navaira, Little Joe Y La Familia. The all day festivities began on Rodeo Plaza at noon and concluded around midnight when many of the artists joined Little Joe on stage for a Familia Encore. It was Emilio’s first performance here since his horrific bus crash in 2008 that nearly cost him his life. Highlight for staff that night was when Emilio and sons, Emilio IV and Diego performed an impromptu but impassioned acoustic performance backstage for crew. The family event was coordinated by Little Joe’s son, Ivan Hernadez, a BBT friend for over two decades.

Hometown artist Grady Spencer and The Work performed for a nice crowd that included many of the band’s family, friends and co-workers.

William Clark Green hosted his CD release show here while making his main stage debut. Band members Cameron Moreland, Josh Serrato, Ryan Garza & Steven Marcus were joined by the superb female artist, Kensie Michelle singing backing vocals and lead on the haunting duet, ”Final This Time”. Their incredible performance of every song on the new “Ringling Road” album, plus previous hits has had most of our staff still praising the concert, even weeks after. Produced by the talented Nashville based treasure Rachel Loy, “Ringling Road” is one of only three albums produced solely by a female to make its debut inside the Top 20 in decades. Album art direction, design and illustration is from Grammy award winners Sarah and Shauna Dodds of Backstage Design Studio, Austin, TX. It surely will garner the talented sisters another Grammy nomination. Congrats to WCG, manager Dave Lytle and their team. The crowd included scores of Texas musicians here to support one of the nicest guys in the business.

Steve Wariner has been playing here since we opened and during that time he has released 25 albums and 55 singles with ten of those reaching the number 1 spot. The multi awarded artist looks and sounds better than ever and his show is full of hit after hit.  He did find time in the show to cover The Beatles song “Get Back” and the Ray Price standard “For The Good Times” It was great to reconnect with him and his brother Terry who over the years has played bass, lead guitar and percussion.

Zac Wilkerson made his debut here on our Honky Tonk stage and wowed both customers and staff with his brand of Texas music influenced but many genres including a big dose of Jacksboro Highway R&B.

Restless Heart is another group that has been performing here since their start in 1984. Featuring original members John Dittrich (drums, background vocals), Paul Gregg (bass guitar, background vocals), Dave Innis (piano, keyboards, rhythm guitar, background vocals), Greg Jennings (lead guitar, mandolin, background vocals), and Larry Stewart (lead vocals).  Again their set featured nothing but recognizable hits that caused numerous standing ovations from the appreciative crowd.

Bob Schneider brought his “eclectic” show here. We call it ecletic because he is not necessarily tied to any genre and doesn’t embrace any radio format. As his website describes: Bob Schneider is the best artist you’ve never heard of. But this year alone, he’s headlining every premiere venue in Texas—the Paramount, the Bass Concert Hall, Dell Hall at the Long Center, and ACL Live/Moody Theater. Sure, he’s struggled to break out of the Texas bubble, but this doesn’t stop him. “If I were to listen to the gatekeepers—the critics, the charts—I’d never have done anything.”

Jamie Richards has long been one of our area favorites and the prolific songwriter/singer gave us a solid pure country set featuring the major ingredients including Fiddle and Steel guitar.

The Swon Brothers made their BBT debut. Brothers Zach and Colton finished third on the 2013 season of NBC’s The Voice and released their self titled album just a few months ago.

Josh Turner always has a great crowd here but this show was enormous, almost selling out. Over 5300 fans braved the rain and constant warnings from all the TV weathermen to watch his amazing talent. The concert featured a video wall backdrop to enhance the presentation. Missing though was his wife Jennifer who normally travels and performs backing vocals and keyboards. She was home with their four sons Hampton, Colby, Marion, and Samuel (born just a couple of days before his last performance here in 2014) His band and crew include many of our longtime friends including tour manager Jim Mayo who has been here as a player and manager for over 30 years. Country legend Randy Travis and his wife Mary brought friends out to watch from side stage and visit with Josh after the show.



Backstage Notes: April 2015


Thieving Birds kicked off our spring Thursday Night Live series on the Honky Tonk Stage.

Sturgill Simpson has exploded in the last year and the Kentucky native brought us a capacity crowd. He had so much fun that he kept adding songs during the show that ended at the 2 hour mark. He has surrounded himself with incredible musicians and the trip here was a first for all of them. Tour manager Greg Dean aka Skinny first visited us as a regular while still in his late teens and has returned regularly with other artists for over 25 years. Sturgill shopped in the stockyards and our gift shop during the day. His drummer, Miles Miller bought his first felt hat at Fincher’s. Lot’s of artists came out to marvel at the talent. Among them, Stewart Mann, Jason Eady, Courtney Patton, Chris Watson, Michaels Padgett, Cyrus James and Mike Harmeier of Mike and The Moonpies, who opened for Sturgill at his sold out Stubb’s show the night before. Turnpike Troubadours manager Patrick Dean brought out a group of 20 that included many industry folks.

Aaron Watson has a record breaking new album, “The Underdog”. He becomes the first solo male of the Nielsen Music era (1991-present) to debut at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart with a self-released and independently distributed/promoted studio album. He also maid his Grand Ole Opry debut just prior to our show. With nearly 4500 fans in attendance it’s just a matter of time before he gets his first BBT sellout.

Crooks played to a great crowd for Thursday Night Live and these guys always amaze us with the diverse tunes and instrumentation that at times features trumpets, accordion and lots of percussion effects. They’ll return for our July 3rd and 4th Picnic.

Cory Morrow played many of the tunes from his new studio album just completed and slated for release this summer. We think it’s going to be his best music ever. Although touring is busy, he is even busier at home. With the recent birth of twin boys, he and his wife Sherry now have 4 little ones to keep them hopping. He said they both agree than even more kids are in their future.

Terri Clark arrived early enough to take friends out to Hawks Creek Golf Club for a mid day round. Very special thanks to Director of Golf, David Curwen and Head Pro, Tony Collins for treating her so graciously. She loved the course and can’t wait to play it again. She retuned just in time for sound check then took her entire band and crew for dinner to Los Vaqueros, another of her Cowtown favorites. Her show, as always, was rocking. 

Folk Family Revival returned with a great new album, “Water Walker” and the first single, “If It Don’t Kill You” has just been released to radio. The guys are currently on a radio station tour to promote it. It should climb the Texas charts quickly.

We kicked off the ACM Awards weekend with a Lee Brice concert that drew music industry folks from around the country plus 5000 local fans. Backstage guests included Lee’s manager Enzo DeVincenzo and his partners from Red Light Management, Curb Records National Director of Promotions, Michael Rogers, Curb’s Mark Janese, his booking agent Risha Rogers and lots of other agents and record reps. The following Sunday Lee won the ACM’s coveted Single Record of the Year Award with his emotional love song “I Don’t Dance” at the ACM Awards ceremony. Brice wrote the touching tune for his first dance with wife Sara at their wedding. Tyler Farr, David Nail and Maddie & Tae all joined Lee on stage at BBT to delight and surprise the audience. Very special guests backstage were our dear friends from Joe’s Bar in Chicago, Ed Warm, Lauren Finlon, Tommy & Megan DiSanto, Kelsey Maynard and Jessica Englund. Congrats to Joe’s Bar for winning the ACM Nightclub of The Year and to Ed for winning Promoter of The Year for Joe’s Live.

Darius Rucker and Montgomery Gentry performed the next night for a Dr Pepper hosted ACM private party for nearly 3000 invited guests. It also featured surprise artists Clint Black and Easton Corbin who performed during Ruckers closing set. A powerful Texas storm caused a one hour delay in the main stage performance and during the entire outage our friend Terri Clark serenaded the darkened backstage that was lit by only one emergency light. It was magic as artists Chuck Wicks and Jessie James Dexter joined in for harmonies. Jessie’s husband, New Your Jets wide receiver Eric Dexter loved the impromptu acoustic set. The festivities throughout the club never slowed down. With emergency lights and candles the invited guests partied on!

Texas Artist, Mike Ryan performed for the public the same night at our 81 Club for a sold out crowd. He wowed the crowd with his performance.

The following week was just as eventful with us hosting the Hooter’s Regional Swimsuit Competition on Wednesday , Buffalo Ruckus for Thursday Night Live, The ultimate outlaw, David Allan Coe on Friday, Chris Cagle on Saturday and to top it off on Sunday, Celebrity DJ Justin Frazell brought us his Texas-Red Dirt Roads show featuring Sam Riggs, Aaron Einhouse, Josh Grider, Randy Brown, Adam Fears, Bobby Duncan.

Congratulations to our incredible staff for such a memorable month.



“The staff at Billy Bob’s did an outstanding job of accommodating our needs. The food and accommodations were outstanding and the team building was fantastic! (calf roping was a hoot).  Our group had a terrific time! Thanks for the memory!“ –Crown Lift Trucks

“We plan our company Christmas parties every year at your place knowing we will be taken care of ‘just like family’. It seems like every year just gets better, you and your staff are so friendly and ‘hands on’. The food is so ‘tasty’ and there is fun going on everywhere. I would certainly recommend Billy Bob’s to any group looking for a place to have the best time of your life!” – Fort Worth Carrier Corporation

“Our group had a blast at Billy Bob’s. The food was wonderful. The line dancing instruction was great fun. We all had a terrific time and believe me it was hard to get everyone back on the bus to leave. I hope we can visit you again” – Brenntag

“I was blown away with how good the food was and so were our attendees. I’m still receiving compliments about it. Great job and the chef was top notch at making things happen even when our schedule changed. Kudos to him!” – CU Members Mortgage

“Every year I have always had at least a few complaints about something. Not this year, not even one. Everything was great!” – Metro Guard Termite & Pest Control

“We had a great time. The food was excellent, the house band was great, and the bull riding was just plain fun! Thank you for all of your help as well. I really appreciate it! You made the experience run very smoothly.” – AIHA

Help Us Bring Jack White to Billy Bob’s

UPDATE (April 14, 2015): After many years of performing in a multitude of configurations, Jack is announcing that he will be taking a break from performing live for a long period of time.

As most of you know, Billy Bob’s Texas successfully ran a TILT campaign to raise funds to bring Jack to DFW! Fans united to raise $137,500 in just 6 days! (Click here to see the Tilt campaign.)

But that’s only half the battle. The goal now is to get his attention and show him what a lively and innovative fan base he has here! We’ve got to keep the momentum going and show Jack how united we are in this heartfelt invitation to bring him to DFW.

So the next step is a GROUP fan video!

We are calling on ALL JACK WHITE fans in the DFW AREA to submit a short (10 seconds or less) video or snapshot that expresses your love for Jack, thank him for the music, and invite him to Dallas/Ft. Worth!

We want HUNDREDS even THOUSANDS of videos and pictures! These will all be compiled into ONE BIG BEAUTIFUL compilation video that we’ll send out to Jack’s team and hopefully to the man himself!

So have FUN, get creative, grab your kids, your dog, your grandma, your friends and neighbors! Pics and videos can be groups or solo, funny or sweet, heartfelt or silly. Use your phone or a fancy camera… we don’t care! The message is all that matters.

Facebook Group for Submissions here:

GUIDELINES and SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS for videos and pictures are below.

DEADLINE is Sunday March 29. You can post’em right here!


LENGTH: Make it short (10 seconds or less!) We hope to have a TON of videos and pics so each clip needs to be (very) short. Just long enough to yell “We love you, Jack!” (for instance.)

CONTENT: Think of your video or picture as a tiny little gift to Jack White. Please don’t beg. We don’t want to guilt him into accepting the invitation. We want him to see the video and find us all so damn irresistible he can’t wait to get down here!

HOW TO SUBMIT: Just share your videos and pictures right here in the Facebook group! We have a means of downloading directly from Facebook, so you can upload from your phone to Facebook and share it  or send a youtube link.

PLEASE DO NOT RESUBMIT YOUR PICTURE OR VIDEO MULTIPLE TIMES. That will create havoc and additional work for me in compiling all of these.

Feel free to post on this page and help us cheerlead this effort, but be sure to keep comments positive and keep all posts RELATED TO THE CAMPAIGN only. Thank you!

DEADLINE:  SUNDAY MARCH 29th at Midnight! That’s right, we’re in a hurry! THIS CAMPAIGN NEEDS MOMENTUM! So snap your pic or shoot your video TODAY and share it on this page!

As soon as we have all your videos and pictures, we will work as quickly as possible to complete the compilation. We’ll post it here to the group and of course send it to Mr. White’s team!

So, let’s go everybody!! Send us your video messages to Jack White!


Billy Bob’s 4th of July Picnic: Artist Additions

For the first time, Billy Bob’s Texas will have a two-day July 4th celebration happening on Friday, July 3rd and Saturday, July 4th. Billy Bob’s Texas 4th of July Picnic will be an indoor/outdoor festival featuring Turnpike Troubadours, Ryan Bingham, Jerry Jeff Walker, Green River Ordinance, American Aquarium, Hayes Carll, Corb Lund and many more artists to be announced. Rodeo Plaza will be fenced off which means patrons will need to purchase a ticket to gain access to the festival grounds both days.


Billy Bob’s Texas 4th of July Picnic

Friday, July 3rd, 2015 & Saturday, July 4th, 2015


Gates: 12PM (both days)

Live Music: 1PM (both days)

Ages: 18 and up, under 18 with legal guardian



  • $45: One-Day General Admission {Friday or Saturday}
  • $70: Two-Day General Admission {Includes both Friday and Saturday}
  • $200: One Day VIP {Friday or Saturday}






July 3rd, 2015
Buffalo Ruckus 1:00PM
Grady Spencer & the Work 3:00PM
Corb Lund4:00PM 
American Aquarium 5:00PM
Green River Ordinance6:00PM 
Chris Stapleton 7:00PM
Ryan Bingham8:15PM 
Merle Haggard 10:00PM
July 4th, 2015
Rodney Parker + 50 Peso Reward 1:00PM
Buffalo Ruckus2:00PM 
The O’s 3:00PM
Robert Ellis4:00PM 
Whitey Morgan & the 78s 5:00PM
Hayes Carll 7:00PM
Jerry Jeff Walker8:15PM 
Turnpike Troubadours 10:00PM

Weddings at Billy Bob’s

Nestled in the heart of the Fort Worth Stockyards, Billy Bob’s Texas is an icon of Western Heritage and Culture. For an event that is meaningful, memorable and personalized-look no further! With the ability to host everything from an intimate gathering to a party of thousands our passion is bringing your dreams to life in a way that makes it uniquely yours.

With an in house culinary team focused on creating innovative and delicious dining experiences, you have the confidence knowing your event will be executed by professionals who are committed to serving authentic dishes that exceed expectation time and again.

We have been honored to host weddings, rehearsal dinners, bachelor and bachelorette parties and showers-allow us the privilege to be part of yours!

Backstage Notes: December 2014

Jackson Taylor and The Sinners played on Thanksgiving night. He performed many of the songs from his “Live At Billy Bob’s Texas” album released earlier this year. 

Corey Smith graduated from the University of Georgia and went on to teach High School social studies by day and perform music at night. It made for some pretty long days. When his music income far exceeded his teacher’s salary he decided to devote all his efforts to writing, recording, and performing at age 28. He brought his oldest son Aden on this trip and, of course, they had to attend our bull riding show and pick up a bunch of souvenirs from our gift store. 

Mike Ryan opened the show on the Honky Tonk Stage and gave us a killer 60 minute set. Mike Ryan fans packed in front of the stage to hear most of the songs from his two full length albums. The newest album, “Bad Reputation” features ten songs all written or co-written by Ryan. 

Stoney LaRue hit town with a new album, “Aviator” and the first single, “Golden Shackles” hit the number one spot on the Texas Music Chart the same

weekend. Stoney’s tour manager Toby Scott welcomed our mutual friends backstage including promoter Greg Henry and fiancé Amanda, Florida Georgia Line road manager Jeff Griffin, Pat Green’s tour manager Brad Ewert with wife Paige, freelance music biz guru Drew Brown, freelance tour manager Greg Dean, artists, Zane Williams, Steve Helms and Josh Abbott who joined Stoney onstage for a couple of tunes. The Josh Abbott Band plays here January 2nd & 3rd. Stoney thanked the US Marine Corps for their annual Toys For Tots drive that BBT participated in. 

B.J. Barham and his band American Aquarium returned for our Thursday Night Live series. The Raleigh NC band was excited to tell us that their new album, “Wolves” will be released early next year. Check out their website to pre-order. 

It was good to have Charlie Robison back. He performed many of the tunes from his 2013 “Live At BBT” release and many more form his “Highlife” album released later the same year. 

Thomas Rhett said he loves coming to BBT and always checks out his father, Rhett Akins’ hand prints when he gets here. We now have Thomas’ prints to display right next to his Dad’s. His show was full of exciting moments, lights, smoke, and a trip into the reserved section walking on the tables and shaking hands. He even pulled some folks onstage to dance and sing-a-long on his Garth cover, “Friends In Low Places”. Thomas made a trip to the gift store for souvenirs before heading to the downtown YMCA to work out before sound check. 

The Wolf’s 12 Man Jam returned to BBT for the twelfth annual event. Phil Hamilton, Brian Keane, Cameran Nelson, Olivia Lane, Deryl Dodd, Brandon Rhyder, Zane Williams, Josh Grider, Joe Nichols, Aaron Watson, Dustin Lynch & Rodney Atkins performed for during the 5 hour show. Our buddy and country icon Randy Travis along with his fiancé Mary Davis sat on the side stage for nearly the whole show. Randy was kind enough to take photos with The Wolf staff, many artists and guests backstage. Other artists stopping by included Rodney Pyeatt, Steve Helms and Adam Hood. 

Jason Eady brought us a surprise, his wife Courtney Patton joined him onstage for his entire 90 minute set and the crowd loved it. She’s one of our favorite artists and when they perform together it is just magic. We’re hoping they record a duet album soon.

Kevin Fowler always has a great show here and he’s one of the nicest people in the music business. He’s the consummate professional and treats everyone with kindness and respect. He was so happy to tell us that his Rustic Ranch in Wimberley, Texas has really taken off as a wedding venue. They have already surpassed their first year expectations and look forward to an even busier 2015. Check it out at 

Lee Brice and entourage arrived a day early to catch Kevin’s show and afterwards visited many of the Stockyards finest establishments. Lee played the

following night to a crowd of over 4000. Curb Records National Promotion Director, Mike Rogers, hosted a dinner at Tim Love’s Lonesome Dove restaurant for Brice, Curb records’ Annie Sandor & Mark Janese and radio station guests. Backstage guests included some of our favorite people, The Wolf’s Mark Phillips and wife Heather, Anthony & Kristin DeVincenzo, Jamie & Melanie Adams, Scott Gaines, Linda O’Brian and artists Zane Williams, Mike Ryan and Jon Stone who sang with Lee during the show. 

William Clark Green packed in the largest “Thursday Night Live” crowd of the year and many of them were musicians from our area. He’s a favorite of most of his music peers. It was good seeing artists Michael Padgett, Chris Watkins and Mike Ryan back for the second trip in a week. We love it that artists support each other. WCG killed it for 100 minutes of mostly original tunes. He threw in a couple covers from The Rolling Stones and The Band. He finished the set with his current single, “Sympathy”. He said this was his best year ever, having left the states for the first time to visit 5 foreign countries. He’s a star so we know that 2015 will be way beyond his expectations. 

Roger Creager always brings big fun to BBT and more importantly he always brings his dad, Bill Creager to shows here. His Dad is the life of the party

backstage and always joins his son onstage for a few tunes. At 80 years old he isn’t showing signs of slowing down as evidenced by the photos Roger showed us of Bill crowd surfing at a recent concert in San Antonio. 

The Casey Donahew Band played their traditional holiday season show here and before the show Melinda Donahew hosted a band Christmas Party in our Guitar Bar for 75 guests that included wives, family, friends, record promoters and radio reps. St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher, John Lackey and Texas Rangers starting pitcher, Derek Holland brought friends out to see the show. Derek joined the radio personality onstage to introduce the band. CDB performed before The Dallas Cowboy Game the following day and watched as the Cowboys clinched the NFC East Championship.