Season 3 | Episode 4: "Honky Tonkin'"

In Austin, Texas, the honky tonk offers more than inexpensive beer and a place to two-step to the sound of the pedal steel guitar. For locals, it also provides a retreat from the fast, commercial rhythms of the metropolis growing relentlessly around them. In this episode, which continues Zeugma's investigation of Austin's "weirdness," we visit a couple of honky tonks and reflect on their history and their contributions to the city's cultural life. We also speak with Christine J. Warren, whose book Honky Tonk Debutante: The History of Honky-Tonk Music as I Care to Tell It (2014) chronicles the popularization of the jukebox and the heyday of the Texas honky-tonk community.

You can stream the episode below; you can also download it via iTunes and LibSyn.

Image Credit: Ginnie's Little Longhorn by Gary J. Wood. The image's size and resolution have been altered.

Episode Producer: Dustin Hixenbaugh

Thanks to Christine J. Warren for sharing her time and insights with us, and to the musicians, bartenders, and other great people we met at the Little Longhorn Saloon and the Cactus CafĂ©. We encourage you to check out the local country band FingerPistol, which we had the pleasure of listening to during our visit to the Little Longhorn.

Music credits: "I've Got a Tiger by the Tail" (Harlan Howard & Buck Owens), performed by Buck Owens in 1964; "Waltz Across Texas" (Billy Talmudge Tubb), performed by Ernest Tubb in 1966; "Steel Guitar Rag" (Leon McAuliffe & Bob Wills), performed by the Texas Troubadours in 1962; "Leon's Guitar Boogie" (Leon Rhodes & Bill Dycus), performed by the Texas Troubadours in 1964; and "E.T. Blues" (Leon Rhodes & Bud Charleston), performed by the Texas Troubadours in 1966.