LJT talks 33rd annual Texas Music Fest and surprises me with a response to one of my questions.

Updated: Feb 8


LJT performing on stage with his son Zack (drums) and grandson Luke. The applause, he said, hit him “like a tidal wave.”

By SARA VANDEN BERGE


Larry Joe Taylor has waited three years to get back up on the main stage at Melody Mountain Ranch in April when his annual Texas Music Festival historically takes place.


He’s waited three years to gather with his friends, a slew of other Texas musicians who perform at the five-day event, in front of thousands of fans.

He’s missed the fans. He’s missed the fun. He’s missed it all.


That three-year slump will finally end on April 25 when LJT’s 33rd annual Texas Music Festival roars back to life.


And the man himself couldn’t be happier.


I met Larry Joe last week inside T-Birds Garage Pub at Melody Mountain Ranch to talk about this year’s festival and what it feels like to get back to it.

He called the hiatus brought on by the COVID-19 shutdown “an 18-month nightmare.”


“The last festival we had in April was in 2019,” Larry Joe told Beneath the Surface News.


The pandemic lingered longer than anyone could have predicted and the 2020 festival was canceled and rescheduled four times until a smaller event took place in September 2021.


But now, with a little more than two months until go-time, Larry Joe and his team believe that this year’s festival will happen – in April.

If you want to go, early bird ticket sales are underway now. Click here to check out pricing.


Camping sites are also available and you can book yours by clicking here.


Larry Joe said the final music lineup will be announced on March 2, but several big names like Parker McCollum, Pat Green, Randy Rogers and Flatland Calvary will headline the event.

“We expect to have about 55 artists perform this year,” he said.


The festival will also offer shuttle service that will run between area hotels and Melody Mountain Ranch. (More on that later.)


“I’m just excited to get back to having the festival in April when the weather is nice and hanging out with all the artists,” Larry Joe said.

THAT BURNING QUESTION


Larry Joe and his wife Sherry are our neighbors and we have enjoyed hanging out with them a few times over the years.


One of the most striking things about the couple is how down to earth they are.


But I’ve always wondered about that adrenaline rush Larry Joe must feel when he performs in front of 50,000 fans.


“What’s it like?” I asked.


Larry Joe just shrugged his shoulders, pushed up his glasses and said, “You really can’t see past the front row, but I can hear them.”

Then he told me about one of the most powerful moments he’s ever experienced on stage.


It happened during last year’s festival in September.


“My 10-year-old grandson Luke got on stage with his guitar and sang with me,” Larry Joe said. “Zack (Luke’s dad and Larry Joe’s son) was playing drums so we had three generations on stage at one time – and that was the loudest applause I have ever heard.


“It hit me like a tidal wave.”