The Top 5 Songs by Whiskey Myers You Should Hear
SAN ANGELO, TX — Whiskey Myers appeared on the Texas music scene in 2008. Back then, the east Texas rock band, best described as a Texas Country Music version of Lynyrd Skynyrd, was about to make its reputation for tearing it up with hard rocking guitar riffs by playing as the openers for some of the more established acts in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.
In July 2018, the new band opened for Charlie Shafter at Woody’s in southwest Fort Worth. The band clearly owned the performance in the shopping center that night. Radney Foster was next door at The Horseman Club, a show I was sent there to cover. I dropped in next door at the smaller venue, Woody’s, because I heard there was a really good new band playing there.
Amazed at the last set, I hung around and talked to Whiskey Myers head guy Cody Cannon. Cannon was eager to get the story out about his new band. He may have been wondering how someone in the media reacted to the Whiskey Myers set. Heck, he was probably wondering what anyone thought. The bar was mostly empty.
He and his band had just put it out there. They threw every dream they had out into the public and, from the look in Cannon’s eyes, he was telling me that if this failed, they’d probably be waiting tables. Or driving big rigs. Or doing something other than music. The look in Cannon’s face was, “This was really good stuff we just performed. Did you notice? Will anyone?”
From that night on, I watched this new band called Whiskey Myers. Their first single, “Lonely East Texas Nights,” had just dropped from their debut record, Road of Life. It sailed.
Now 10 years later, Whiskey Myers is headlining shows, not opening them. They perform in front of thousands at big city venues like The House of Blues. Ironically, the two bars mentioned above, where I first saw this upstart east Texas rock-and-roll band, aren’t there anymore. With four studio records behind them, the band outlived the venues where they were seeking their early breaks.
The band seen that night in 2008 was formed during the early 2000s when frontmen Cannon and Cody Tate were roommates writing songs together.
Cannon’s vocals and Tate’s electric guitar form the nucleus of the band that also features John Jeffers on guitar, Gary Brown on bass, Tony Kent on percussion, Jon Knudson on keyboards/fiddles, and Jeff Hogg on drums.
Lynyrd Skynyrd will come to mind first when you hear them. It’s hard-driving, electric guitar-fused southern rock. But there’s also a little bad country boy attitude, like early 1980s Hank Williams, Jr. in their sound. It’s a little more country than full-on Skynyrd. With that country soul comes extremely heart-felt lyrics about life as frontman Cody Cannon views and experiences. That’s what makes this band unique, and popular.
Whiskey Myers performs in San Angelo at Midnight Rodeo on Thursday, March 15. If you plan to go, you can purchase tickets in advance at Stubwire. Advance tickets are $15, and $20 at the door. The show is open to ages 18 and up.
Here are the Top 5 Whiskey Myers Songs, according to Spotify spins. The crazy thing is, as much rock music these guys put out, just like it is with Zepplin or Skynyd, their ballads are the songs that get all the attention. If you only have time to watch and listen on one song, watch “Broken Window Serenade.” It’s the band’s most powerful song.
The Top 5 Whiskey Myers Songs
5. Lonely East Texas Nights
This was the band’s first hit song. It is autobiographical, but describes a working man on the road who cannot continue loving a girl long distance, while he’s always gone. The chorus: “Oh baby here I'm comin' home. Cause I can't love you on the telephone. Oh darlin’ I Swear I'll make it right. No more lonely east Texas nights.”
This is a ballad about a man who recalls his relationship years ago with a woman named Virginia. The sad part of the song is the love he had back in 1975 seems unobtainable for him today. A verse: “That's the way the story goes, Of broken hearts and sad souls. You left me here, Not saying goodbye.”
This song is autobiographical about life in the foot lights. Musicians always complain about stardom, something many of us don’t understand because we’ve never been famous. But in “Stone,” we can live the life of a rock star vicariously. The reason for all of Mr. Cannon’s woes: “They say life is like a dagger. Backstage is full of parasites. They love you and drain of everything you own. Just to feel better about their life.”
2. Broken Window Serenade
Written by Cody Cannon, this is a love song. But it’s more than that. It’s a song about the truly needy living among us. The subject of this very sad song is a girl the singer has a crush on. He watched her decline as her dreams were taken away from her by her addictions. The song is heavy on real life and light on the metaphors. Though, the lyrics don’t condemn. They simply state what happened to his love interest. Cody puts it all out there, like with this verse: “You feed your addiction, With your crystal meth. And I plea for your life, as it takes you to your death.”
1. Ballad of a Southern Man
This is a rock ballad about growing up in rural East Texas, but could be anywhere that’s not on either the east or west coast, or in a big city. The lyrics of the chorus say it all: “Grandma's in the kitchen; Papa's done passed on; We'd sit out on the front porch, Just a pickin' on a song; And there's a Bible on the table, 'Cause he bled for what we have, And that's the ballad of a southern man, I guess that's something you don't understand.”
Want to hear these songs live? Get tickets to the Whiskey Myers concert at Midnight Rodeo San Angelo on Thursday, March 15. Click here for details.