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The Great 1996 Dead Austin Music Venue Crawl by Michael Barnes = Acclaimed Author & AAS Social Writer

George Vance McGee says, While out previewing property in Old West Austin, I ran across a 76 year old mega-rich hippie who told me, "the Amardillo World Headquarters was a shit-hole, my venue of choice was the Aus-Tex Lounge (owned by Austin and Music Culture Advocate Steve Dean) South Congress, where I'd get to see really excellent live music, with a young Stevie Ray Vaughn and more..." 

If you are entrenched by pre-boomtown Austin, Texas history read this article by AAS and Indelible Austin Book Series Author Michael Barnes. 

It's amazing how history tends to romanticize the past, when living first hand tellers, claim different and witnessed the truth.

The Great 1996 Dead Austin Club Crawl by Michael Barnes

Researching a reader’s question about the exact location of the first Soap Creek Saloon off Bee Caves Road led us to this fantastic, half-forgotten document published by the American-Statesman on Aug. 15, 1996.

“The Great Dead Club Crawl” is an attempt to catalogue the music venues of Austin legend, a typically ambitious artifact of XL, our extra-sized entertainment section launched that year. It comes with no byline in our digital archives, but I know that Ed Crowell edited it. I can’t remember if Michael Corcoran or Don McLeese contributed to it.
For a more comprehensive history of Austin clubs, go to Corcoran’s Austin Clubland. We borrowed some of his images here.
I showed the 1996 document to Peter Blackstock, one of our current music writers, who rightly observed that it needs a lot of updating and that quite a few of spots listed in the “Epilogue” have changed names and owners, some of them multiple times. Also, LibertyLunch and Black Cat Club, two of Austin’s most lamented Dead clubs, were still in operation at the time.
He also advised that I clean up the text a bit before reviving it, which is exactly what I’ve done in order to provide this snapshot of Dead Austin Clubs as viewed from 1996.
It’s somewhere between the time they get their electricity turned on and when they get their Texas driver’s license that newcomers to Austin are exposed to that big Austin tradition: hearing about all the great clubs in town that they’ll never get to go to. It is not unusual, in fact, for our nouveau citizens to know that Raul’s was Austin’s first punk club even before they know the name of a good Chinese restaurant.
Austin loves its clubs like Idaho digs its potatoes and Dennis Rodman flaunts his tattoos. But unlike the impressionist sun around Rodman’s navel, there is no sense of permanence where great clubs are concerned. Like the passion....Click here for the Direct Link to the ENTIRE article on the  Austin American Statesmen Online Website


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