2017-2018 Music Poll: Texas Music Hall of Fame Nominees

Beto y Los Fairlanes

Formed in 1977 by pianist Robert Skiles, this horn and percussion-heavy Latin jazz and salsa juggernaut helped put Austin on the musical map. Their rhythmically-charged, epic dance parties diversified a scene dominated by cosmic cowboys and white boy blues. They played regularly at the Armadillo World Headquarters, Soap Creek Saloon, and established a long-running residency at a nascent Liberty Lunch. In 1980, the group taped an episode of Austin City Limits. Band history, which continues to this day, boasts some of Austin's best musicians, including saxophonists Tony Campise and Tomás Ramirez, trumpeter Bob Meyer, guitarist Mitch Watkins, and beloved drummer "Mambo" John Treanor. They've released nine albums since 1978. – Jay Trachtenberg

Rick Broussard

Growing up in San Antonio, Rick Broussard fell under the sway of roots-minded punks the Clash and Dils, leading him straight into the heart of raw, raucous rockabilly. From there, it proved a short and fast drive to other statewide dancehall strains, from teary, beery honky-tonk to Gulf Coast swamp-pop. Relocating to Austin in 1984, the guitarist has led his Two Hoots & a Holler through myriad musicological explorations, refining his plaintive, heart-on-sleeve songwriting and always lean axe wielding along the way. Broussard's become a pan-generational master of Texas musical idioms in the vein of Holly, Sahm, and the other Lone Star greats. – Tim Stegall

Ed Hall

Hatched in 1985, this glow-painted local trio reconciled suburban sludge rock apostasy with the art-punk ambition of local forebears like the Big Boys. Leading lights of the unlikely experimental scene at Dong Huong, a Vietnamese eatery turned punk club, the group produced two LPs on Boner Records prior to Butthole Surfers drummer King Coffey releasing 1992's Gloryhole on his Trance Syndicate label. Ed Hall's renown ultimately spread to Europe, where they performed live on John Peel's BBC program. They split following 1995's La La Land, but guitarist Gary Chester, bassist Larry Strub, and drummer Lyman Hardy still perform together as three-fifths of pelvic techno-rockers Pong. – Greg Beets


"We weren't trying very hard," Fuckemos vocalist/trombonist Russell Porter once said. "We thought that worked for us." Born in 1991 as Warthog 2001UK, these merchants of pill-addled sleaze punk changed their name not long after Porter got himself booted from Emo's one night. 1993 debut Fuckemos Can Kill You brimmed with pitch-shifted paeans to bad behavior that distilled the aesthetic essence of Red River. Bearing no grudge, Emo's put the album on their jukebox, where it remained in heavy rotation. Porter later co-starred in director Bob Ray's low-rent 1999 pot rock epic, Rock Opera. – Greg Beets

James Hand

Quavering voice and unmendable heart, James Hand never fails to evoke Hank Williams. Born in 1952 Waco, the man called "Slim" has haunted beer joints and dancehalls his entire life, astonishing such onlookers as Willie Nelson, who proclaimed him "the real deal." He didn't issue an album until 1996's brilliant Shadows Where the Magic Was, and only a decade later got his first national distribution with a pair of Lloyd Maines/Ray Benson-produced discs for roots tastemakers Rounder Records. Beyond his striking voice and traditional country songcraft, Hand overflows with a musician's most desired quality: authenticity. – Kevin Curtin

Pamela Hart

Dubbed "Austin's first lady of jazz," Los Angeles native Pamela Hart moved to Austin in 1982 and a decade later received an MBA from San Marcos' former Southwest Texas State. Postponing a head for business, her role in a UT Cotton Club review found her inhabiting Billie Holiday like Jamie Foxx became Ray Charles. That defined her initially in the local scene, but her versatility cuts through smooth jazz, quiet storms, pop, all of it. When not opening for greats including Nancy Wilson and Dianne Reeves, her 1994-founded Women in Jazz local concert series teams her with genre greats such as Carmen McRae. – Raoul Hernandez

Jimmy LaFave

Willis Point Texan, Jimmy LaFave staked his musical claim due north in Oklahoma, helping seed the region's "red dirt" roots movement. Forever thereafter, the singer possessed of a singularly emotive cry bore the banner of that state's bedrock muse, Woody Guthrie. Not coincidentally, LaFave covered Guthrie's greatest acolyte – Bob Dylan – like few other singers. He moved to Austin in 1986 and over the course of 15 studio albums built an international cult spellbound by his balladic intensity and a Lone Star compositional greatness. He succumbed locally to sarcoma on May 21, 2017, at the age of 61 and the next month was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. – Raoul Hernandez

Toni Price

For nearly three decades with only intermittent interruptions, Austin Tuesdays were defined by Toni Price's "hippie hour" residency at the Continental Club. The singer's blend of smoky roots winds genres through her powerful, soulful voice – blues, country, and rock melted down to their core essence and remolded by emotional, almost spiritual, performances. Her band has hosted Austin's best players, including the late Champ Hood, and her unique phrasing makes Price a dream interpreter, earning her Best Female Vocalist in 1994 at the Austin Music Awards. She reclaimed the honor in 2001, along with an Album of the Year AMA for Midnight Pumpkin. – Doug Freeman

Tomás Ramirez

South Texas native from Falfurrias, tenor sax blowtorch Tomás Ramirez arrived in Austin to study jazz composition at UT as the Sixties rolled over into the Seventies. Fusing the era's bitches brew with a nascent smooth jazz sensibility and Latin soul, Ramirez was soon touring and recording with Jerry Jeff Walker and later appeared on LPs by Christopher Cross and Carole King. Longtime accompanist of the Texana Dames and frequent Eric Johnson collaborator, he came by his nickname "Jazzmanian Devil" as both a performing umbrella and the title of 1983 debut. Wrote the Chronicle's Jay Trachtenberg about its follow-up: "This balance of explorative vision and commercial sensibility characterizes Tejazz from Austin's perennially popular and mercurial saxophonist." – Raoul Hernandez

Casper Rawls

A true Telecaster master, with the rare skill to play the curious B-bender modification Clarence White made famous, Casper Rawls ranks among Austin's favorite guitarists since the Seventies. Real name Rick Rawls, Casper grew up in Helotes and – after aborting an education at UT – stuck around Austin playing with the LeRoi Brothers, Toni Price, Kelly Willis, the Derailers, Doyle Bramhall Sr., and dozens more. The twang addict, whose accumulated stage time at the Continental Club rivals anyone in town, is also one of the great Buck Owens' acolytes, hosting the annual Buck Bash, which its namesake once attended. You gotta hear him play "Buckaroo." – Kevin Curtin

Tee Double

"Longevity, baby!" So touted DJ Premier of that oft-overlooked quality in hip-hop at the jump of a De La Soul record. In ATX rap history, few embody the trait better than Austin-born-and-bred producer and wordsmith Tee Double. The "kid from Kealing" born Terrany Johnson has stressed his local bona fides with an easy flow on LPs like Rosie's Boy and The Home Town Kid, part of an unrelenting barrage of albums (28 and counting) since stepping onto the scene in the mid Nineties. Nowadays, the hip-hop griot is as likely to be sharing nuggets about the music biz on industry panels as he is dropping bars. – Thomas Fawcett