HELIX — The tiny town of Helix continues to lure big names from the Texas music scene to perform during the Wheatstock Music Festival.
Coming up on its 13th year, DeWayne Dunlap is excited to share that the Randy Rogers Band is the headliner. Tickets for the Saturday, Aug. 15 music festival, which will be held at Quantum 9 Arena in Helix, are available for pre-sale March 1.
The group, which is based out of New Braunfels, Texas — located about 45 miles south of Austin — is fronted by Randy Rogers, who loved music from an early age. According to a biography written by Marisa Brown for AllMusic.com, Rogers’ great-grandmother taught him how to play the piano at age 6, and by the time he was 11 he was already writing his own songs and learning chords on the guitar.
After spending some time in a backing band, Rogers decided to bust loose and form his own group. Shortly after their first practice, the band’s 2002 debut album, “Live at Cheatham St. Warehouse,” was released. It was followed two years later by their first studio album, “Like It Used To Be,” and in 2004, they released “Rollercoaster.”
By this time, the ride had solidified and major players in the band were described as a “unique brotherhood fueled by a shared passion for making great music and a strong commitment to each other.”
Along with constant touring — in addition to numerous gigs in their home state of Texas, last year the Randy Rogers Band played from California to Washington D.C., including the Back Country Bash in Joseph, Watershed 2019 at The Gorge Amphitheater and the Braun Brothers Reunion in Challis, Idaho — and eight studio albums with his band, Rogers has been involved in a number of outside collaborations. He’s worked on projects with Wade Bowen and Robert Earl Keen, as well as joining Lyle Lovett, Willie Nelson and Jerry Jeff Walker to sing on Michael Martin Murphey’s “Austinology” album. However, Rogers said he’s in it for the long hall with his band of brothers.
“This is obviously our way of life. We’re not going anywhere,” he said. “We have a great and loyal fan base and we do things right. When we play our shows, people expect to have a great night and to go home satisfied.”
To understand what Rogers is talking about, you won’t want to miss this summer’s Wheatstock. The one-day music festival also features local and regional Americana, folk and country artists. Other confirmed acts include Tylor & the Train Robbers, The Wanderlost, Norman Baker & the Backroads, Hillfolk Noir and Great American Trainwreck.
Wheatstock was founded with the purpose of raising money for the Helix School District music program. It continues to support that effort as well as donating proceeds to Divide Camp, a wilderness retreat for combat veterans in the Wallowa Mountains.
The event includes food vendors, free camping, a beer garden, bouncy castles for the kids and merchandise sales. The first 1,000 tickets are available for $30 each. Tickets at the gate are $40. Admission is free for active military personnel and kids 12 and under. Also, VIP packages are available for $149, which includes a general admission ticket, a limited backstage pass and an event T-shirt and poster. For tickets or more information, visit www.wheatstock.org.