Friday, November 18, 2016 ♦ 8:00 PM
4544 N Lincoln Ave · Gary and Laura Maurer Concert Hall · 773.728.6000
The fact that Texas music titans Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock - on their first go-round as The Flatlanders in 1972 - were completely rejected by the country music establishment is surprising in retrospect but, ultimately, poetic. That each went on to have formidable solo careers is a testament to their talent and determination. Add to this their diverse yet complimentary styles - Joe the street-wise rocker, Jimmie Dale the mystic with the classic country voice and Butch the cerebral folk singer - and you've got a story of one of the most extraordinary kinships in American musical history.
Hancock reflects, "We came together as a bunch of friends who happened to be musicians, too. There's just that crazy Lubbock mystery to it. We've all had our focus on the quality of the songs and the music, instead of any kind of 'me first' thing, or any kind of ego trips. It's almost like the old Marx Brothers thing: Three guys get to the door at the same time, and they all say, 'Oh, no, you go first.' 'No, you go first.' 'No, please, please, you go first.'"
Ely adds, "We've always been close, but now I think that we all realize that this is something that is really special. There are very few people who have remained as close as we have, especially in the music world. There are cases out there where brothers won't even talk to each other because they've been in the music business together. We consider this a real precious thing."
"For it to still be as much fun as it was in the beginning, I feel blessed," says Gilmore. "A lot of musicians don't get that luxury."