With now only nine days until Christmas, one of the best parts about the holidays is the music. And you can count on Austin musicians to bring you your favorite carols with a little twist.
Here are nine Christmas songs by some of your favorite Austin musicians:
Black Pumas are participating in the holiday spirit this year with a new Christmas single. The Grammy-nominated Austin duo released a cover of Lou Rawls' "Christmas Will Really Be Christmas" on Nov. 18. The single is part of the Spotify Holiday Singles collection, where artists get to showcase their favorite songs in different styles and melodies. After rising to quick fame, Black Pumas and their psychedelic soul music will continue to impress Austin.
Austin musician Jackie Venson hopped on the Christmas music train when releasing a cover of "O Holy Night" in 2018. Venson posted the cover on Facebook stating, "I don't usually do this, but 2018 was the year of new experiences." With a crazy year behind and Christmas almost here, we can't help but wonder if Venson will release another Christmas cover this year. If you're a fan of classic Christmas carols, you might have to add this one to your favorite holiday playlist.
Jerry Jeff Walker
Jerry Jeff Walker spent most of his career in Austin as a leading figure in the outlaw country music movement. After relocating to Austin in the 1970s, Walker became a symbol of the Austin music community, along with Willie Nelson and Asleep at the Wheel. The musician released a Christmas album in 1994, with deep Texas country tones and popular Christmas carols such as "I'll Be Home For Christmas," "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" and "Jingle Bell Rock."
Raised in Louisiana but now a Texas local, award-winning Marcia Ball wrote the song "Christmas Fais Do-Do." After kicking off her career in Austin in 1974, Ball invented her music style by releasing Texas and Louisiana inspired melodies and combination blues. The pianist and singer went on to release a short book inspired after "Christmas Fais Do-Do," illustrating the story of a Louisiana tradition—the house party dance. If you're a fan of Louisiana blues, this song is filled with country, funk and soul.
Rusty Wier / Santa Claus Is Back In Town youtu.be
The Texas Christmas collection in 1991 featured artists such as Willie Nelson, Marcia Balla and Austin native Rusty Wier. Wier released a Texas rock and country cover of "Santa Claus is Back in Town," for funky lovers of holiday music. Wier died in 2009 in Driftwood.
Eric Johnson and Van Wilks
Van Wilks and Eric Johnson - What Child is This? youtu.be
Local guitarist Eric Johnson added to the Texas Christmas Collection in 1981 with an instrumental cover of "What Child Is" with Texas native Van Wilks. The pair manages to play the cover with intricate melodies on their guitars, for a beautiful echo of a well-known Christmas carol.
Kansas native and Austin local Pink Nasty, joined Texas musicians in "Stars & Snow: A Texas Country Christmas" in 2008 covering "Baby, it's cold outside" with WTF Special. The singer, with her powerful country voice, hasn't released any new music, but hit the holiday mark with this cover.
The beloved Austin and Texan musician released "The Classic Christmas Album" in 2016, featuring popular Christmas carols such as "White Christmas", "Jingle Bells", "Santa Claus is Coming to Town." Along with releasing his own album, Nelson joined popular country-pop singer Kacey Musgraves in 2016 for her own Christmas album, "A Very Kacey Christmas." The duo performed "A Willie Nice Christmas," a fun and festive tune for lovers of both musicians.
This is part of a holiday series counting down to Christmas so make sure to visit Austonia tomorrow, as we reach eight days until Christmas.
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Austin FC couldn't find the stamina to fight off a 2-0 loss against LAFC for their inaugural match on Saturday.
The match, which saw No. 21 Austin FC go head-to-head with No. 2 LAFC in Los Angeles, was broadcast nationally on FOX and FOX Deportes.
Salute the support. 👏
It's only the beginning for @AustinFC. pic.twitter.com/TduorqYr2y
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) April 18, 2021
Eleven players took the stage as Austin FC players for the first time, with five starters making their MLS debut. "Ringleader" Alex Ring took the captain's armband and wore it well. The defensive midfielder could be seen leading his teammates through their first ever match, but it wasn't enough to stage an Austin takeover in LA.
In the signature style of Head Coach Josh Wolff, the team played with quickness and intensity, nearly connecting on several fast breaks. It was harder for them to stay in front, however, something that Wolff credits with quick decision making and a tough LAFC defense.
"We have a quick attacking team, but I think when you make quick attacks and it fizzles it's just about some decision making," Wolff said. "Are we in position to finish attacks? If not, can we reestablish our attack and get stuff better?"
The club was given some generous breaks from No. 2 LAFC, who had one or both of their star DPs out for the half. While forward Diego Rossi is out for the entire match due to a hamstring injury, Carlos Vela was accidentally pulled too soon on what turned out to be a miscommunication.
"He gave us the sign that he needed to come off," LAFC Head Coach Bob Bradley said on broadcast. "I can't say more than maybe it's my fault."
LA pulled some dramatics and slowly gained more possession throughout the half, but ATXFC's defense wasn't initially as shaky as it seemed in preseason. Jhohan Romana has pulled his weight in getting the ball out of goal, and a 34-year old Matt Besler held his own in center back.
As the second half commenced, however, it became clear that LAFC had the advantage over Austin's first major league team.
Goalkeeper Brad Stuver had his work cut out for him, fending off 24 shot attempts, 11 of which were on goal. He didn't have much time to prepare, either: in the first 30 seconds of play, Stuver had already made a save to keep the match 0-0.
LAFC finally connected in the 61st minute of play as Corey Baird shot one into the bottom right corner. The team capitalized off their momentum and put one past Stuver a second time, drawing roars of approval from the LAFC crowd.
While some last-minute attempts from Jon Gallagher and others were made, Austin FC didn't have the endurance to bring a tie. After seven additional minutes of stoppage time, the club lost their first match 2-0.
While the scoreboard tells one story, Wolff said that the team did well considering the skill of LAFC and the pressure of their club debut.
"We've got to be realistic," Wolff said. "This is the first time this organization has been in front of TV with an opportunity to show itself and I think there were some promising moments. And we're going to maximize those and continue to try to develop those, but there's lots to build on."
The team may have lost, but it still won the support of thousands of Verde fans, dozens of which made it to watch their team's first match. When Stuver and the team made it to bthe stadium, Los Verdes fans were already there to show support, and Stuver said his wife saw the same back in Austin.
"The moment that we pulled into the stadium, we saw Black and Verde fans cheering us on as we got to the stadium," Stuver said. "During warm up, you can just look around and see different groups sitting in different sections of the stadium and it's just truly amazing to see the support in our first game. We know that we want to give the fans everything, because this we play for the city and we play for them."