We first featured the Randy Rogers Band on our cover in Fall 2008 upon release of the band’s fourth album, Randy Rogers Band, which would climb to No. 3 on the Billboard country chart — one of six consecutive RRB albums that would crack the Billboard Top 10, an impressive run any act would be proud of.
But what makes this group special is its consistency — and I’m not referring just to the quality of music the sextet produces. I’m talking about the constancy of the band’s makeup. In a business where bands and members regularly come and go, and where disruptions are seemingly inevitable, Rogers and his cohorts — all five of them — are still here.
The same sextet that produced 2004’s Rollercoaster — the album RRB fans seem most enamored with — was back in the same room where that album was made to record their new release, Homecoming, which drops the same day as this issue. So it’s only fitting that Radney Foster, who produced Rollercoaster and two other RRB releases, was back in the producer’s chair for the latest release, too — a return to form given that back in ’04, RRB was opening for Foster while recording Rollercoaster.
The band’s members will tell you they’re a brotherhood that’s survived 20 years together fueled by their passion for great music and their affection for each other. And that explains their appeal: fans respect the players and their camaraderie and embrace the music. They must — because even Rogers himself admits he does little outreach via social media. In fact, he’ll tell you he lives by the adages “The less you see of me, the better” and “Be excellent, and be gone.”
As such, RRB is a remarkable 21st century success story, so we sent our associate editor, Jeremy Burchard, to talk with Rogers — and Foster — about the band’s 20-year run and how Homecoming represents coming full circle.
Elsewhere, Valeria Alderete, a Tejana whose academic work is rooted in cultural preservation, profiles 10 essential Latinx artists — some known (Tish Hinojosa, Lydia Mendoza, Little Joe y la Familia), some lesser known (FEA, the Chamanas, Ramiro Garibay) — all of whom are deserving of the limelight.
We also assemble our picks for the best 22 albums of 2022 — with contributions from a stellar lineup of critics comprised of Richard Skanse, Texas Music’s first editor, the Houston Chronicle’s Andrew Dansby and longtime contributor (and singer-songwriter) Mike Ethan Messick, who’s been reviewing for us about as long as the Randy Rogers Band has been around.
Add to these stories a compelling Q&A with Grammy winner Adrian Quesada, who’s been featured in our pages a number of times, and whose work with the Black Pumas and Grupo Fantasma has elevated his national stature. Writer Cassandra Lance-Martinez talks with Quesada about his intriguing new solo album, a psychedelic ode to an ancient Latin tradition — the bolero.
Finally, veteran contributor Darryl Smyers profiles a Dallas institution, singer/songwriter/producer Salim Nourallah, whose new album with Marty Wilson-Piper of The Church, See You in Marfa, has a fascinating back story.
There’s much to digest here. Enjoy the articles, and, as always, thank you for your support.