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22 Apr 09 Larry Joe Taylor’s Texas Music Festival and Chili Cookoff 2009

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Larry Joe Taylor Music FestivalDates: April 21 through 25, 2009

Gate Hours:
Tuesday April 21st 11 AM – 12 AM
Wednesday April 22nd 10 AM – 12 AM
Thursday April 23rd 10 AM – 12 AM
Friday April 24th 10 AM – 12 AM
Saturday April 25th 8 AM – 12 AM
* Gates close at midnight, no admittance after midnight

Place: Melody Mountain Ranch, County Road 707, Stephenville, Texas 76401

Tickets: 1, 2, and 3-day tickets will be available at the gates or at ticket outlets. A drivers license is required to obtain your tickets from will call. 4-day tickets are not available online, at the the office, or at the gates…a few 4-day tickets are still available at the ticket outlets! Click here for more ticket info, including pricing.

Camping: Primitive camping is available at the gates. Click here for more info.

Nearby Motels: Call ahead to check availability and make reservations!

Stephenville (Approx. 6 Miles from festival grounds)
Best Western (254) 968-2114
Holiday Inn of Stephenville (254) 968-5256
Texan Inn (254)-968-5003
Hampton Inn (254)-918-5400
La Quinta Inn (254) 918-2444
Comfort Inn (254) 965-7162
Budget Inn (254) 965-7225
Caravan Inn (254) 965-5043
Day Inn (254) 968-3392
Royal Inn (254) 965-3807

Dublin (Approx. 18 Miles from festival grounds)
Central Inn (254) 445-2138
Shamrock Inn (254) 445-3334

Hico (Approx. 30 mils from festival grounds)
Hico Hills Inn (254) 796-4217

Directions to Melody Mountain Ranch:

Coming from Austin:
Take Highway 183 North until it becomes Highway 281 North to Stephenville; Stay on Hwy. 281 6 miles North of Stephenville; Turn Left on Farm Road 3025; Go 4 miles; Melody Mountain Ranch will be on the left coming off a hill.

Coming from Dallas/Ft. Worth:
Take I-20 West to Hwy. 281 South; Go 20 miles South on Hwy. 281; Take a Right on FM 3025; Go 4 miles; Melody Mountain Ranch will be on the left coming off a hill.

Coming from Abilene:
Take I-20 East to Hwy. 281 South; Go 20 miles South on Hwy. 281; Take a Right on FM 3025; Go 4 miles; Melody Mountain Ranch will be on left coming off a hill.

Music Lineup:

Tuesday, April 21st
Campground Campfire Concert, 7:00 pm
Larry Joe Taylor
Chris Wall
Richard Leigh
Todd Snider

Wednesday, April 22nd
Lone Star Beer Acoustic Stage – 2:15 pm
Maren Morris
Josh Grider

Coca-Cola Band Stage – 5:00 pm
Kyle Bennett Band
Bart Crow Band
The Gourds
Jason Boland
Cross Canadian Ragweed

Thursday, April 23rd
Lone Star Beer Acoustic Stage – 12:15 pm
Jed Zimmerman
Jason Eady
Chuck Pyle
Michael Hearne & SXSW
Ray Wylie Hubbard

Coca-Cola Band Stage – 5:10 pm
Josh Abbott
Johnny Cooper
Casey Donahew
Roger Creager
Randy Rogers Band

Friday, April 24th
Lone Star Beer Acoustic Stage – 12:00 pm
Matt Wayne
Susan Gibson
Walt Wilkins
Max Stalling
Joe Pat Hennen
Michael Martin Murphey

Coca-Cola Band Stage – 5:00 pm
Rich O’Toole
Matt Martindale
Band of Heathens
No Justice
Wade Bowen
Reckless Kelly

Saturday, April 25th
Lone Star Beer Acoustic Stage – 11:30 am
Sisters Morales
Keith Sykes
Davin James

Coca-Cola Band Stage – 2:00 pm
Texas Renegade
Tommy Alverson
Rusty Wier
The Tejas Brothers
Deryl Dodd
Brandon Rhyder
Mike McClure
Larry Joe Taylor

What’s New:

This year, the festival has been extended to 5 days with the addition of Campground Campfire Tuesday. No cruising around in vehicles is allowed within festival grounds. Advance purchase of unmarked, primitive campsites is available this year. These sites are unmarked and are available on a first come, first serve basis. By reserving these sites you will be guaranteed a camping spot at the festival. The burn ban has apparently been lifted, so don’t forget your camp fire accessories.

About the Festival:

Larry Joe Taylor’s Annual Texas Music Festival & Chili Cook Off (also known as the Best Outdoor Music Event in Texas) will be celebrating year 21 in 2009! The 21st annual Songwriter Festival is expanding to a 5-day event scheduled for Tuesday April 21st through Saturday April 25th at Melody Mountain Ranch and RV Park. Nestled in the hills 5 miles north of Stephenville, Texas, the elevation of this 380 acre ranch makes it the 3rd highest point in Erath County allowing for spectacular views of the surrounding countryside.

Thousands of loyal fans make the annual pilgrimage and camp on site to enjoy the music and the breathtaking panorama, which alone is worth the price of admission! Melody Mountain is very near the center of Texas making it easily accessible from all of the major metropolitan areas in the state. The ranch has 30 full drive through hook ups, 250 sites with electricity, ample primitive camping, showers, a 7000 square foot indoor facility, and an outdoor covered pavilion with a stage. Nearby, Stephenville, “The Cowboy Capitol of the World” and a community that was included in Norman Crampton’s “The 100 Best Small Towns in America” provides over 800 motel rooms for non-campers and a place festival patrons can enjoy a variety of area restaurants and antique stores and stock up on supplies at the grocery, hardware and discount stores.

Venues for singer/songwriters were almost non-existent 20 years ago. The advent of the Larry Joe Taylor Texas Music Festival and Chili Cook off was an effort to provide a music friendly environment in which both the artists and fans felt welcome and on common ground. The early years found most patrons to be die hard veteran music fans from the 70’s “outlaw” era or avid “chili cooks” who also happened to like original music. Steadily the festival grew and an increasing number of the early outlaw music fans began to attend, often with their young children in tow. To accommodate growing numbers, the site of this festival has moved from it’s original location in Mingus, Texas to Thurber, Possum Kingdom, Glen Rose, Meridian, and now to a permanent home on the hills just outside Stephenville, Texas.

Around year number 10, the children who had accompanied their parents in the early years were beginning to come of age. These young adults began bringing their friends and the crowd rapidly became a diverse mix of all ages and backgrounds. During festival number 11 or 12 we felt like everything was coming together for this genre of music. Acts like Pat Green were bringing in the college crowd and guys like Rusty Wier, Ray Wylie Hubbard and Steven Fromholz were helping bring the Progressive Country crowd out of hibernation. The lesser-known singer/songwriters on the bill had the opportunity to perform in front of these large and diverse crowds and develop their own fans. It was almost like the “summer of love”. The older fans were cooking barbeque and chili for the young ones who had arrived with nothing but a three-day-supply of beer, and the young fans were digging the same music and breathing new life into a twelve-year old festival.

The festival ultimately became a rallying point for the “new” original country music scene and reached a level of national recognition several years ago when Performing Songwriter Magazine ranked it as one of the Top Four Music Festivals in the state of Texas. The event increasingly gained a reputation for being the springboard for many talented but unknown singer/songwriters and bands as well as staging well known artists from the past and present. “Melody Mountain” seems a fitting final resting place for an event that has always continued traditions year after year of camping out, picking, singing and telling stories around a campfire and showcasing only the best original music in the nation. (Source:

For more information check out the Larry Joe Taylor website. You can also visit the MySpace and Facebook pages.

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