Ballew grew up in the farm and cattle country of the vast plains
in far North Texas. It's universally known that the magnificent
sky and lonely emptiness of west and north Texas has spawned
the prolific creativity of more than a few Texans... and so
it's been for Ballew since the day he picked up his fathers
old guitar at the age of ten, and instinctively started making
an undeniable force that has taken him from those humble beginnings
to spreading his own brand of Texas music to the far reaches
of the world where faithful fans anticipate the humor and gritty
frankness of his songs.
Michael Ballew is what is known in the music business as a lifer,
or if you prefer... a real trooper. He's strained for the high
notes and poured his soul into guitar solos night after night
in sweaty, smoky bars and basked in the spotlight on some of
the most glamorous settings and prestigious stages in the world.
after two albums, numerous singles, six CD's, two successful
chart songs ("Your Daddy Don't Live In Heaven, He's In
Houston", and "Pretending Fool") and having paid
his dues in full, Michael Ballew has become what he always wanted
to be... a fully seasoned writer/entertainer, finally getting
the recognition and praise all artists crave from reviewers,
DJ's and music lovers alike.
you hear his latest compilation CD "RODEO COOL", you'll
also learn to appreciate the true and honest Texas content of
this internationally successful recording artists music.
and I have been pickin' buddies for a long time. His musicianship
has always impressed me, and hearing him always takes me back
to the good old days of Austin. Don't get me wrong; I like the
new songs as much as the old ones, but see if you don't agree
that this new album shows Michael at his Texas best. New or
old, he's tearin' up the new millennium!"
"The first time I met Michael Ballew was in 1978, or
there abouts. He was playing in a bar in Austin, Texas called
the Lock, Stock and Barrel. I had just moved back to Texas and
I remember thinking to myself, man, if everybody down here sings
like this, I'm in deep water. Luckily, nobody sang like Michael.
You see, it is rare to find two things in this business, an
original voice, or an original hand at writing songs. Michael
has both of those rare traits. His songs express his love for
our sweet mother Texas in a way only a bona fide, died-in-the-wool
Texas boy could, and his voice is really like no other. I use
to say, ?If Ballew drank a glass of water, by the time it hit
his stomach, it would be strong, black coffee." Here's
to you, Michael Ballew, and your special brand of music. I hope
you live forever and I never die!"
Lee Roy Parnell
SINGLE RELEASE IN EUROPE After two successful chart releases
last year a new single "Damned Ol' Beer" will be released
March, 2002 in Europe & Australia. This new song, a country
western beer anthem, will bring in a new fan base for Ballew's
steadily growing following.
European Tours in 2002 The"Damn Good Texas Band"
and I are doing three European tours next year. One in the Spring
(April 2-22, 2002) that will start in Denmark and head toward
Norway & Sweden and two summer tours England & Spain
in July for and France & Spain in August. Stay tuned for
5-Star Review - COUNTRY MUSIC PLUS *****This is a super
album. Great country sounds honed to perfection through years
of toiling the barrooms and beer gardens of Texas.
2002 Americana International Music Festival, UK Great news...
Starting July 6, 2002 (& Michael's birthday) Michael and
his "Damn Good Texas Band" will share the main stage
at the Americana International Music Festival in England with
Paul Overstreet and his "All American Band". The Americana
Internat'l is one of the largest and most prestigious three
day country music concerts in all of Europe.
OF THE WORLD - #1...Top of the Charts 4 Weeks in a RowMichael's
second European single following the release of the title cut
from the album "Rodeo Cool" joins the elite band of
acts that have debuted at #1. The European Independent Airplay
Chart reflects tracks proving to be the most popular as voted
for by the most influential country DJs in Europe. American
singer Michael Ballew's amazing ballad "Top Of The World"
stayed in the #1 poll position (commencing October 14) for 4
weeks in a row and remained on the Top 40 Airplay chart for
**** 4-Star Review - COUNTRY MUSIC PEOPLE ****"I
love this whole album. Every genuine country music lover out
there should do everything in their power to help this artist
receive greater recognition". Alan Cackett
COUNTRY MUSIC & MORE - STONE COUNTRY Country Music
& More, England. One of the Lone Star States's best kept
secrets. Michael Ballew and the Damn Good Texas Band have been
spreading their international wings. This overview album is
gaining favor from all quarters so another Texas secret is moving
into the public domain. .....I feel that Michael could be the
guy that could bring that sleeping giant of real country music
in Britain back to activity on a grand scale. Brian Ahern
**** Four-Star Review - COUNTRY MUSIC INTERNATIONAL ****"Those
who favour pure Texas style country music could do themselves
a big favor by listening to this man...Ballew's voice, like
that of many Texan performers, is a little rough around the
edges, but that roughness adds to the flavour of the music,
the embodiment of all that Texas honkytonk has come to represent.
Check him out--he's worth the effort. Al Moir
AUGUST 2002 EQUIBLUES FESTIVAL & RODEO, FRANCE Michael
Ballew and the Damn Good Texas Band, along with Rosie Flores,
will be one of the headliners at the Equiblues Festival &
Rodeo in France August 17th, 2002. Details to be announced.
JULY 2002 COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL, SPAIN Michael Ballew
and the Damn Good Texas Band will be a headline act at the Country
Music Festival (July 19-21, 2002) appearing on Saturday, July
20th in Terrassa, Barcelona, Spain.
Ballew's Single Rises to #4Already building a name in the Europe
marketplace through tour appearances, Michael broke over to
radio audiences when the title track of his "Rodeo Cool"
CD enjoyed a 13-week run in the EMS European Country Chart peaking
at No. 4 during July, 2001.
APRIL SCANDINAVIAN TOUR / WHAT A LINEUP When Ballew and
the Damned Good Texas Band leave for Denmark and points north
in April, the lineup will be: DODD MEREDITH, drums and vocals(Floyd
Tillman, Hank Thompson, Roy Head Show Band, Johnny & Edgar
Winter, Gene Watson, Darrell McCall and on and on); STEVE CARTER,
bass and vocals (Stop the Truck, The Lotions); PRICE PORTER,
steer guitar, harmonica & vocals; (Freddie Powers, Johnny
Gimble); MICHAEL BALLEW, lead guitar & vocals.
JULY EUROPEAN TOUR LINE-UP When we tour the UK and Spain
in July the line-up will be: Dodd Meredith, drums and vocals
(Floyd Tillman, Hank Thompson, Roy Head Show Band, Johnny &
Edgar Winter, Gene Watson, Darrell McCall and on and on); Gene
Kurtz, bass and vocals; Price Porter, steer guitar, harmonica
& vocals; Don Raby, fiddle, mandolin and vocals (Hank Thompson,
Chris Wall, Junior Brown, Don Walser, Jess Demain, Floyd Tillman
& on and on); Michael Ballew, lead guitar & vocals.
YOU FOR #1I tip my hat in a warm salute to the DJ's that are
playing my new single "Top Of The World" and helping
to make it #1. Thank you.
MUSIC ROUND UP - Ballew makes the cover "Country Music
Roundup" Magazine (August Edition)
& Yolanda Parera Visit Austin, TexasTony Parera and his
wife Yolanda had lunch at Shoal Creek Saloon (one of my favorite
places to eat catfish) last week. Tony, sure enjoyed the visit...hope
to see you next year in Spain.
ALBUM OF THE WEEK The Netherlands, Dick & Ingrid
Veldkamp & Ria Venekamp Visit AustinEddy & Ria (The
Netherlands) stopped in Austin after getting married in San
Antonio and enjoyed a cold one, good chili and conversation
at the Shoal Creek Saloon. We sure enjoyed the visit and look
forward to seeing you next year in your country. Michael Ballew
ALBUM OF THE MONTH - Metro Country Online. "Rodeo
Cool" September 'Album of the Month' Metro Country Online
Kirk in Fort WorthI was playing the White Elephant Saloon in
Ft. Worth Tx. with my "Damn Good Texas Band" the other
day when a fellow on the front row held up a magazine with my
picture on the cover. I almost fell off the stage because it
was the UK's Country Music Round Up magazine that I know for
a fact is not availible in the US. As it turned out it was Richard
Kirk, the interviewer that wrote the article. Richard was on
holiday in Texas and while scanning the radio dial he heard
a live show I was doing with Gary Barton at KBEC Waxahachie
and he decided he'd surprise us by dropping in on the gig I
was promoting. What a small world and what a good time we all
had getting to know each other in person. "Country Music
Roundup (August, 2001)" ...Michael Ballew
Michael Travelling in Texas Michael reports "We're picking
up Texas radio stations daily". My friend and drummer,
Dodd Meredith is working the phones talking to dj's and I've
been dropping in for on-air interviews. KVET (Austin) has been
playing cuts most every morning (The Sam & Bob Show). They
have the biggest listening audience of any radio shows in Texas.
We still have alot of ground to cover (big state) but so far
every station that has listened to Rodeo Cool starts playing
it. Mostly "Damned Ol' Beer" and "Rodeo Cool".
What encourages me the most is they are putting this cd in medium
to heavy rotation. The Brownwood area and points north are pounding
away. Real Cowboy country. Now the Ft. Worth area is starting
to pick it up. Yeee Haaah!!!