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Cavalcade features nightly musical performances

Besides a horse trough full of rodeo competitions and activities, the The 67th Annual Cavalcade Rodeo offers a variety of musical entertainment.

Musical acts includes the Aaron Watson Band on July 18 and the Casey Donahew Band on July 20. Other musical acts scheduled during the Cavalcade are the Cody Johnson Band on July 17 and Jason Boland and the Stragglers on July 19.

The band line-up includes:

Wednesday — Cody Johnson Band

In a time of synthetics and plastics, folks appreciate the real thing. Musically, we look for songs that reach beyond our eardrums, touching our hearts. Cody Johnson‘s unique blend of Country and Rock does just that.

Many Texas Music fans met Cody Johnson’s honest style through the radio singles from his Six Strings, One Dream album: “Nobody to Blame” (#6 on the Texas music charts in 2009); #1″Pray for Rain” (2009 – 2010); and “Texas Kind of Way” (#6, late 2010 – 2011).

At first opening for other artists, Cody has also taken the Texas dance-halls by storm. Increasingly, the Cody Johnson Band is the attraction, and an honest-to-goodness one.

Though new to Nashville recording ways, Johnson’s musical confidence showed in the Music City recording studio. Together, he and the studio musicians tweaked songs to obtain the exact intended effect. Listening to the Music City veterans, Cody adopted suggestions when they felt right, and would “hang tough” when he felt the music differently.

You can read Cody’s bio in its entirety at http://www.lonestarmusic.com/CodyJohnsonBand

Thursday — Aaron Watson

When Watson started making music, they called him the Honky Tonk Kid.

At 35, they still do. He’s proud of it: though he’s gone from an old van and trailer to a tour bus, from sawdust floors to big stages, he still holds dear the core reasons why he first started writing songs and singing so many years ago.

“We have a formula that has been working for over a decade, and that’s making good, wholesome, fun music reflective of what I believe in,” he says.

This newest record is all of that, wrapped up in a rollicking ride and brought into existence through the toughest of tragedies but also by the grace of God.

Friday — Jason Boland & The Stragglers

Country music swashbucklers Jason Boland and the Stragglers’ hard-hitting new live set “High in the Rockies: A Live Album” is an unconstrained collection of appealingly inventive Red Dirt country.

Jason Boland was born in Harrah and attended Oklahoma State University, where he formed the red dirt/Texas country band Jason Boland and the Stragglers. Albums include Dark and Dirty Mile, Rancho Alto and Comal County Blue.

Crackling with the raw outlaw voltage that has made them one of the fastest‐rising forces in contemporary country, the resolutely independent Texas‐based quintet’s execution and delivery is uniformly impressive, and with material divided between Stragglers standards and fan favorites, the album rises to a profound new elevation that is reflected in a most fitting choice of title.

Whether reveling in the Okie kickback groove of “Tulsa Time” or redefining the epic despair of Boland’s classic “Bottle By My Bed,” their sound, characterized by ebullient musicianship and passionate vocals, links country music’s past to its future with admirable expertise.

Band members include Boland on vocals, Roger Ray on steel, lead guitar and dobro, fiddler Noah Jeffries; bassist Grant Tracy, and drummer Brad Rice.

Visit the band’s website at thestragglers.com.

Saturday — Casey Donahew Band

With their latest release, “Moving On,” The Casey Donahew Band are quickly becoming one of the hottest names in Texas Country, drawing fans at home and beyond.

Capacity crowds are showing up this spring to see the Casey Donahew Band’s dynamic live performances with over 1,300 at the Grizzly Rose in Denver, Colo. and Tumbleweeds in Stillwater, Okla recently hosted 3,000 fans for CDB. Their first performance at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo this February drew an impressive 10,800 fans into the AT&T Center.

Sold out shows in 2010 include Fort Worth’s legendary Billy Bob’s Texas with 5,500 fans and 12000 at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas. Casey Donahew Band owes their quickly expanding fan base to playing 200 dates a year playing State Fairs, Rodeos, Dance Halls, Festivals, headlining and opening for stellar acts like the Randy Roger’s Band and Kevin Fowler in front of huge crowds.

The “Donahew-it” work ethic includes self-releasing four CD’s in the past five years on their Almost Country Label.

Texas Music Magazine’s recent review calls Moving On “a vibrant collection matching eternally restless anthems against engaging narratives, rattles and rolls and rumbles like a youthful Robert Earl Keen fronting Reckless Kelly. Lone star idealism links kindred spirits.”

The CD charted on Billboard Top 200 at #126, #3 Heatseeker and #28 on the Country Charts (September ‘09) selling 14,000 copies in 5 months with single “Ramblin Kind” topping the Texas Music chart at #1.

For more information, log onto http://www.caseydonahewband.com.

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