Doug Sahm Tribute

SXSW showcase reviews

Dave Alvin
Dave Alvin (Photo by Todd V. Wolfson)

Doug Sahm Tribute

Antone's, Thursday, March 19

Doug Sahm never stood in one place for too long as this two-hour tribute demonstrated. The man defined Texas music, which meant rock, Tex-Mex, blues, jazz, and country intermingled, and it still makes perfect sense. Jimmie Vaughan led off the night swinging, especially on the horn-driven "Why Why Why," the 1950s-style soul track he lends to the upcoming Sahm tribute disc, Keep Your Soul. Sir Doug's country rock side was covered by the Gourds and a lively "Nuevo Laredo," but the fire was lit when son Shawn Sahm & the Tex-Mex Experience hit the stage with a dancing take of "Adios Mexico." The younger Sahm's a spitting image of his father in many ways, one of them being a talkative stage presence that kept things lively during set changes. Dave Alvin joined in, aided by Cindy Cashdollar and her steel guitar, for "Dynamite Woman." "When I was young, I wanted to be Doug Sahm when I grew up," Alvin claimed. "Tonight I get to pretend." There were left-field appearances as well, one by local blues guitar wunderkind Jake Andrews (with Keep Your Soul producer Bill Bentley on drums), and Massachusetts country rocker Sarah Borges. Those that stuck it out were rewarded with a blowout of a finale as all the living members of the Texas TornadosAugie Meyers, Flaco Jimenez, Ernie Durawa, and Speedy Sparks – joined for a mini set of their greatest hits, right down to the Freddy Fender nod "Wasted Days and Wasted Nights." It was the kind of raucous celebration that Doug Sham would have loved, tempered with the knowledge that he left a legacy of great music and a world full of memories that many of us still miss.

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at Sign up for our South By-specific newsletter at for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

Saturday Showcases
Saturday Showcases

March 20, 2015

Friday Showcases
Friday Showcases
Korea, Japan, Spain, Africa – see the world from single showcases

March 20, 2015

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Gary Clark Jr.
This Land (Record Review)

Kahron Spearman, March 22, 2019

Texas Platters
Rosie Flores
Simple Case of the Blues (Record Review)

Jay Trachtenberg, March 22, 2019

More by Jim Caligiuri
Carrie Elkin’s Life-and-Death Folk
Carrie Elkin’s Life-and-Death Folk
Her father's death and daughter's birth upped the stakes of the singer's finest work

April 14, 2017

SXSW Music Live: Richard Barone Presents Greenwich Village in the Sixties
SXSW Music Live: Richard Barone Presents Greenwich Village in the Sixties
Soft Boys, Youngbloods, Moby Grape, Brian Jones’ grandson, etc.

March 18, 2017


Jimmie Vaughan, Shawn Sahm & the Tex-Mex Experience, Dave Alvin, Jake Andrews, Sarah Borges, Texas Tornados

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle