Sonobeat Records

The beginning of the Austin music scene

(Re)discover the roots of Austin music

Today's Austin music has its roots 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 or record at any of dozens of world class studios – 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... all started 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's 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.

The story of Austin's music heritage through Sonobeat's Eyes and Ears

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". We invite you to join us on a journey back in time.

Happenin's at Sonobeat

Looking back and looking ahead

We launched the Sonobeat website in 2004 to celebrate the hundreds of talented Austin and Central Texas musicians who recorded with this tiny but influential Austin record company of the '60s and '70s. In 2015, we rebuilt Sonobeat.com from the ground up to make it fully mobile and to add a slew of new features. In 2016, we'll add many more new features, and we'll unvault dozens of new sound bites from Sonobeat recording artists.

40 years ago in Austin and the world

Join us for a trip back in time. 40 years, to be exact. It's yesterday once more in our feature highlighting life in and around Austin, Central Texas, the nation, and the world in 1976. Notably, 1976 was the last year Sonobeat Records operated, ending its nine year run recording and releasing vinyl records by Austin and Central Texas singers, songwriters, and musicians. Sonobeat's final vinyl release was Helmer Dahl's album, Toe-Tapping Tunes.

How Sonobeat built its own audio mixers

When Sonobeat was a struggling startup in 1967, its founders couldn't afford a professional audio mixer, or, for that matter, microphones and tape recorders. Although it borrowed the microphones and tape recorders, it ended up building its own mixers, from scratch. Not just one mixer, but three, including a sophisticated 16-input console designed to rival recording studios in Los Angeles, New York, and Nashville. Here's the story.

'60s Sonobeat Artists now on iTunes and Amazon