Before SXSW. Before Austin City Limits. Before Outlaw Country.
(Re)discover the roots of Austin music
Today's Austin music is rooted in '60s and '70s Austin music
Austin's vibrant music scene – where today you can pick from hundreds of live music performances any night of the week in any genre from Afro-jazz to zydeco – traces its genealogy directly to the music legends and legacies who populated the Austin and Central Texas music scene in the '60s and '70s. Psychedelic rock, outlaw country, "New Sincerity", and more... are all rooted here.
Take a tour of Austin's music scene in the '60s and '70s
As an integral seed of the Austin music revolution that began in the mid-'60s, Sonobeat Records' prodigious output introduced Johnny Winter, Eric Johnson, Rusty Wier, the Afro-Caravan, and dozens of other luminary Texas musicians to the world. A truly eclectic label, Sonobeat's story is the collective stories of hundreds of singers, songwriters, and musicians who've made music history in Austin.
Austin's music heritage from Sonobeat's vantage point
Sonobeat's archives – featuring hundreds of original master tape recordings, photographs, and documents stored away for decades and exclusively available here – provide a unique look back into the dynamic and diverse Central Texas music scene from 1967 through 1976, when Austin began to stake its claim as "The Live Music Capital of the World". Join us on a journey back in time.
Happenin's around Sonobeat
No better way to enjoy a Sunday evening
Ernie Gammage (Sweetarts), Layton DePenning (Lavender Hill Express), and John Inmon (Plymouth Rock), plus Patterson Barrett and Tommy Taylor, play their Sonobeat hits and more as tribute band The Jade Room, named for Austin's iconic '60s live music nightclub. It's a free concert Sunday. May 29th (opening acts start at 4 pm; The Jade Room takes the stage at 6) May 29th at Symphony Square, 1101 Red River, Austin.
Over 175 song clips from 71 Sonobeat artists
Listen to the sounds of Austin music in the '60s and '70s. From musicians who made Austin the live music capital of the world. Remarkable diversity from the Sonobeat Records archives: from Latin-inflected rock to psychedelic to jazz to country to folk to gospel and more. Influential Texas music recorded before SXSW, Austin City Limits, and Outlaw Country. Every artist page here includes at least one clip.
How Sonobeat built its own audio mixers
When Sonobeat was a struggling startup in 1967, its founders couldn't afford professional microphones, tape recorders, or an audio mixer. Although it borrowed microphones and tape recorders at first, it built its own 6-input mixer. And then went on to build two more, including a sophisticated 16-input console rivaling those in Los Angeles, New York, and Nashville studios. Here's the story.