Crucial Concerts for the Coming Week

A few fests, a handful of Halloween shows, and more live music to see

Tanya Tucker (Photo by Derrek Kupish)


Luck Ranch, Friday 28 – Sunday 30

Originally slated as a 10-day extravaganza on Willie Nelson's Spicewood ranch, the inaugural Lucktoberfest pared back to a long weekend that packs an even bigger punch in consolidation. Paul Cauthen kicks off the festivities Friday with his Big Velvet Revue, the low-belting outlaw laying down country funk with special guests David Ramirez, the Kernal, Kirby Brown, and Ryan Quiet. Legendary L.A. roots rockers Los Lobos also lend their Latin-laced soundtrack of the past four decades to the evening.

Saturday drops an outlaw masquerade ball led by masked country crooner Orville Peck, riding this year's dramatic sophomore LP, Bronco, while Tanya Tucker continues her resurgent reign as matriarch to a new generation of artists – following the country queen's exceptional return to the spotlight behind 2019's Brandi Carlile-produced While I'm Livin'. A full fashion show of provocative Central Texas designers including Sloane, NICÓ, and DASHE lights up the runway with support from burlesque troupe the Jigglewatts, suave country rocker Jonathan Terrell, and Vinyl Ranch's Disko Cowboy.

Sunday closes with a proper Bavarian Oktoberfest toast helmed by the shimmying jive of Shinyribs and Grammy-nominated polka maestro Alex Meixner. Games and competitions celebrate the Hill Country's unique Deutsch-Tex-Mex heritage, with guests Sunny Sauceda, Walt & Tina Wilkins, the Walburg Boys, AlpenMusikanten, Tanzenfest, and Yodel Blitz. Find individual night passes ($35) at
 – Doug Freeman


Thursday 27 – Sunday 30

Settling into its Halloweekend affiliation across various Downtown venues – including Mohawk, Empire, and Hotel Vegas – Levitation glues together with spooky vibes and genre surprise, beyond the former Carson Creek dust and psychedelia. Find last week's full preview online, including an interview with the Jesus and Mary Chain's Jim Reid (as his outfit headlines Stubb's tonight) and "Five Here-and-Now Picks to See at Levitation" (Fri., Oct. 21), from L.A. trio Automatic's doomer humor to local Temple of Angels' gossamer dream-pop. With four-day passes eaten up, individually ticketed shows are still on sale at Chess Club also announced a run of majority local $10 Levitation shows.  – Rachel Rascoe

Bill Callahan

Far Out Lounge, Saturday 29

All treats and no tricks, Austin's guitar-strumming sage Bill Callahan plays his first show since the October release YTILAER for Halloween weekend. In a callback to the title, the record plucks moments from Callahan's life – as a father of two, as a husband – and reflects them back with folkloric embellishments. It's brighter, more contented storytelling than much of his three-decade career, which Callahan pairs with storms of horns and his ever rich, whiskey-smooth baritone to open up expansive Americana landscapes. The South Austin show kicks off a month of touring through the UK and California, a crowd to perhaps more specially receive Callahan's recent songwriting on the simple pleasures of home.  – Abby Johnston

The Oxys Halloween Show

Voodoo Doughnut, Monday 31

Voodoo's flagship location in Portland, Ore., has long hosted garage/punk gigs. The Austin Sixth Street outlet inaugurates its own live concert series with a special Halloween release party for new local punk supergroup the Oxys' debut album, A Date With the Oxys, issued three days prior by Dead Beat Records. Centered around ex-Bulemics/Dead Boys/Syl Sylvain guitarist Jason "Ginchy" Kottwitz and Nowherebound's Phil Davis singing, the 10 songs brilliantly intersect the Dead Boys and Cheap Trick. ATX hardcore luminaries Böndbreakr and User Unauthorized support.  – Tim Stegall

Plains, MJ Lenderman

Scoot Inn, Tuesday 1

Growing up on the Chicks and Shania Twain probably primed me and a generation of indie music followers to devotedly track the bristly, beautiful, indie-folk labeled evolutions of Waxahatchee's Katie Crutchfield and Jess Williamson – but I hadn't really processed that until Plains. The new duo of Alabaman Crutchfield and Texan Williamson clarifies the country through line with old-school waltzes and unflappable Nineties mainstream nods with debut record I Walked With You a Ways. Considering the launch of the latter's Mexican Summer-supported cosmic odes while living in Austin and an "Abilene" video cameo by Adriene Mishler of Yoga With Adriene – where Williamson sings the absolutely epic salute, "Texas in my rearview, Plains in my heart" – I'm ready to claim this as a Lone Star homecoming.  – Rachel Rascoe

DIA on Día de los Muertos Celebration

3ten ACL Live, Wednesday 2

Austin-based musicians unite to celebrate Mexico's beloved, ancient tradition of honoring death and those dearly departed with a muscular lineup more than 30 artists strong. Rising hip-hop/funk star BLK ODYSSY, roots legend Carrie Rodriguez, and classical vocalist Sangeeta Kaur mingle among the wildly diverse lineup, while festival hosts/EQ Austin Board Members Tomar Williams (Tomar & the FCs), "Eastern soul" singer Nagavalli, and Alex Vallejo lead the night's backing bands. The melting pot evening raises funds for autism and other disability services through Easterseals Central Texas.  – Christina Garcia

Mike Sailors & Tough Tenors

Elephant Room, Thursday 27

The trumpeter teams up with a noteworthy ensemble including Elias Haslanger, Daniel Dufour, and new Butler School of Music Associate Professor Diego Rivera. – Derek Udensi

Rhyme Schemes Open Mic

Kick Butt Coffee, Friday 28

Ben Buck's open-mic series continues with the addition of announced locals – notably including Khxnid! – showcasing themselves. – Derek Udensi

Velvet Crown Collective: Halloween Haus

Flamingo Cantina, Sunday 30

Incisive poet Blakchyl and storytelling heavy MC Nez Tha Villain highlight the local creative collective's Halloween bash. – Derek Udensi


Kick Butt Coffee, Monday 31

Nothing screams Halloween like rocking out to a band known for wearing kabuki masks and literally setting objects ablaze while performing. Dallas punks Noogy and local outfit Narrow Haunts open. – Derek Udensi

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