Margaret Moser Tribute: Denny Freeman
Remembering that “little blues cult”
as told to Bill Bentley, Fri., June 30, 2017
My first memory of Margaret was at Alexander's Place, in maybe 1974. Alexander's was a small BBQ joint, in a small community called Kitchenville, if I remember correctly, on Brodie Lane – "the country." If you knew about it and came there, you were almost automatically in our little blues cult. Because of its size and remoteness and being a black-owned place in a black community, almost everyone that went there was known to us or became known to us before long.
Most folks at the time didn't know or care about us, or blues in general. We certainly had our small following, made up of lovely people, but in the early Seventies, even Stevie and Jimmie [Vaughan] were relatively unknown. Even though there was blues in Austin before us Dallas boys came down, in 1970 much of it had dwindled and locals were more interested in the other things. Margaret taking an interest, and eventually writing about it, was significant.
And she didn't just write about it. She championed it. She wasn't the only writer to write about blues, but from time to time through the years, Margaret would write something to remind everyone of our contribution to the Austin music world.
The Seventies, in my opinion, was when Austin became a "music town." The great thing was that it wasn't planned. It just happened because people from all over the country started hearing about Austin and moving here, and that included many musicians. As the decade advanced, more and more music was being developed here. Willie came, Antone's, and so did Austin's rep as a "blues town." So many exciting things were being developed, organically. Margaret's writing about the music helped so many others discover it.
It would be hard to describe Margaret in a few words, but if I had to use just one, I'd choose "sweet."