First Friday with The Rotisserie Chickens & Aaron Stephens


The Rotisserie Chickens bring the funk to every stage they take. This ska band from Dallas is made up of six confident musicians from backgrounds ranging in rock metal, indie folk, and the marching band. With Michael Grover on vocals, Bradley Hastings on trumpet, Alek Walker on guitar, Colin Holmes on bass, Graham Houpt on trombone, and Derrick Fickle on drums, this crew truly gets down in the most eclectic form. Ska, celebrating the upbeat combination of Caribbean mento and American blues and jazz, is the kind of music you bounce, jump, and dance to; and even then, The Rotisserie Chickens exceed this joyful expectation. While experiencing their performance, childlike reactions to jump and sing and to smile stupidly well up from your most primal motor functions causing you to realize the power that music has upon the mind, body, and soul – speaking on behalf of a friend, of course. Either way, The Rotisserie Chickens will spunk up your night and leave you feeling affirmed in your inner, vibrant youth. Check out their album “Hung Out to Dry” (2015) here.

AaronStephens Raw 2 (1)

Aaron Stephens is a soul, singer/songwriter creating from a transparent heart. His music is nostalgic for a simpler time yet carries the reality of today’s struggles. With his first full length album “Hard Times Straight Lines” debuting in 2014, he has initiated a legacy to carry him throughout his career by way of his sweetly aged sound and modern take on the human soul. Stephens is one of a kind, a rare jewel, and has worked very, very hard and sacrificed much to achieve all that he has done, and this can be heard in his music. I have found him to be a beautifully weathered sojourner, having trekked through the peaks and valleys that life allots, eager to learn and know so that he may express his wisdom through story telling and song. Basically, Aaron Stephens is the music you want to listen to on vinyl while drinking coffee and contemplating the meaning of life – in the most non-emo way, of course.

So, to prepare your souls for a night of funk and story telling, click here to listen to a sneak preview of our FREE First Friday show on our exclusive Spotify playlist. The doors open at 7 PM and show begins at 7:30 PM, you’re guaranteed to dig it.

Community Forum and Poverty, Inc. Documentary


The evening of February 25th will be a unique experience at historic Grand Stafford Theater. Poverty, Inc. is an acclaimed documentary about the Western approach to international development and its mixed results. Discussing the roots of poverty, this documentary is based on over 200 interviews from 20 different countries to build awareness on profiting contractors and organizations. The film will highlight this multi-billion dollar poverty industry to segue into a community forum afterwards. This event will be led by a panel of Texas A&M leaders of various backgrounds; The Norman Borlaug Foundation, The Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship at Mays Business School, and Mosbacher Institute for Trade, Economics and Public Policy at the Bush School of Government and Public Service.

Daniela Silva, the initiator and moderator of the event, is a graduate student in the College of Agriculture. Silva states, “I hope that this film will provide some insight into development work and force people to question the status quo.” She hopes for people in attendance to consider the realm of charities and social entrepreneurship through a scope that questions why poverty exists.

The evening will begin with good conversation and food to kick start a sense of community at the Stafford. Supported by the innovative developers of AdventGX, the Stafford will transform into a vibrant center for community engagement. Communications Director Joan Quintana explains, “Events like these provide opportunity for intellectual engagement and are great for building community and enhancing quality of life.”

Texas Music Pickers Presents Josh Grider, Drew Kennedy, and Sarah Olivia Buss

Texas Music Pickers does it again! With this line-up debuting on Friday night featuring the Red Dirt music’s sensation Josh Grider, the groundbreaking singer/songwriter Drew Kennedy, and Country’s new up and coming artist Sarah Olivia Buss, there is no doubt it will be a night to remember. 

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After listening to Josh Grider’s albums and conducting some “extensive” research, it was obvious to hear that Grider is in this for the music. He has been around the Country/Red Dirt music scene for over 10 years now, continuing to succeed and develop a solid credibility in his ability. His nostalgic, classic Country sound seems to be inspired by the combination of Country greats such as Garth Brooks and Billy Currington with a Texas Country way of story telling that’s both relatable and completely unique. He’s been recognized for his talent by appearing at festival gigs, opening for nationally known artists, and for selling over 30,000 copies of his song “Crazy Like You” featured on his album “Million Miles To Go.” Grider’s big break came in 2013 after signing a publishing deal with AMP Entertainment and partnering with Paradigm Talent Agency who became his booking reps. Appearing on a TV show, creating new music, and touring around the U.S., is only the beginning of this Country sensation’s story. I believe he represents what Country is and what it always should be: a hard worker pursuing their dreams, singing from the heart, and willing to risk it all for the gift they were given. The Grand Stafford is excited to hear him play his new stuff (“Brokedown,” 2015), his old stuff (“The Gettin’ There,” 2012), and his older stuff (“Million Miles To Go,” 2007) and notice the consistency in his work and his ability to capture to his audience.

Drew Kennedy is, like I said before, a groundbreaking singer/songwriter. I think to say he is thoughtful is an understatement. This guy has produced 7 albums worth of genuine, pure-hearted music as well as written a novel. So it’s obvious Kennedy has a lot to say, but the depth at which he expresses himself and the standard for which he holds his music to blows me away. After listening to a few of his albums (especially “Fresh Water in the Salton Sea,” 2011), I sat there feeling enlightened and understood. He reaches depths and paints pictures that are both beautiful and complex, asking his listeners to think, to paint along with him. Kennedy’s creation doesn’t end at creating music and writing songs and stories, he has also co-founded the Red River Songwriters’ Festival in Red River, New Mexico. So, keep your eye on our friend Drew, and on his latest album “Sad Songs Happily Played.” Big, beautiful art has already come from this fellow and I can’t even begin to imagine what’s next!

Lastly, the beautiful Sarah Olivia Buss will be opening for these fellas this Friday evening. Gracing us with her distinct and angelic voice, Buss has a talent that is beyond her years. With the angst of Miranda Lambert and power of Carrie Underwood, she combines them to create a sound that is beautiful and rare in an artist her age. Her confidence exudes through her honesty and strong voice making her someone to keep an eye on because this chick definitely has something special.

So come out and join the Stafford in experiencing a night of raw, hardworking talent that expresses the freedom that creating and listening to music can offer! Doors open at 7 PM and the show starts at 8 PM. Buy your tickets here. And listen to a sneak peak of the evening here with the Grand Stafford’s exclusive Texas Music Pickers Spotify playlist


Artist Spotlight: Statesboro Revue with The Cover Letter


Statesboro Revue 

If we’re honest, the true weight of any band or artist is chiefly determined by how they translate to us in a live performance setting. Can they breach that intangible border between the stage and the gathered onlookers? Can they slip in like a steady rising state of inebriation, stealing our attention, controlling our emotions and ultimately drawing us into their world? Does their energy continue to vibrate within us well after the last chords have been played and our daily life comes to reclaim us? These are probably some of the questions one writer from Rolling Stone had running through his head before he proclaimed Statesboro Revue as one of the highlights of the 2009 South by Southwest Conference and Festival. Statesboro Revue goes back to 2008, but the evolving vision of front man and primary songwriter Stewart Mann goes back much further. It’s a journey down many roads from Texas to Tennessee to California and back, all in a search for that perfect, unspoiled place for his music to grow roots. Year after year in city after city, it became clear that those roots had taken hold on stage and from there grew into a groove oriented, old school rock and roll band, the likes of which have not been seen in quite some time.

Never being afraid to aim high,  Statesboro Revue released their debut album Different Kind of Light produced by Grammy-winning David Z (Prince, Jonny Lang, Buddy Guy, Govt Mule) in 2009. Hitting the Texas Music Chart with two Top 20 singles, the blues rock effort quickly drew a dedicated fan base to their stages, but this was just a prelude to the tour de force that is their album Ramble on Privilege Creek,  released in April 2013. Described by Mann as earthier with catchier hooks, this new music is pure living energy that winds through light and lofty atmospheres down through the depths of sweet Celtic miseries and over to angry growls through clenched teeth, all without ever losing that gypsy pulsation that is the very definition of rock and roll. “This album is extremely broad in subject matter and style, in musicality and production, and I couldn’t be happier about it. I’ve always strived to create a sound that doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel; merely merge the little idiosyncrasies of all my influences and shape them in a manner that might someday be looked upon as my own unique sound. I think this record is as close as I have ever been to accomplishing that goal.”

Reminiscent of singers from decades past, Stewart Mann’s soulful voice is both evident and familiar. His seasoned timbre is well-worn but polished enough to have landed him the starring role in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story at the historic Cameo Theatre in San Antonio, Texas. Joining Stewart is younger brother Garrett Mann, the lead guitar player who holds down the fort, then lets loose when the song calls for it. On bass guitar is Musicians Institute alumnus Ben Bradshaw, providing backbone and foundation, all while mixing in melodic leads and runs that only a player of his experience can muster. Drummer Kris Schoen’s ability to both drive the tunes and lay down a lazy snare for the slow groove furthers the dancing frenzy that ensues at a Statesboro Revue show. The all-star list of shared stages more than hints that this all-inclusive working band is truly worth their weight. The Statesboro Revue has played with the Los Lonely Boys, The Wailers, the Allman Brothers Band, Cross Canadian Ragweed, Whiskey Myers, Dirty River Boys, Willie Nelson, Charlie Robison, Ryan Bingham, Reckless Kelly, Turnpike Troubadours, Randy Rogers Band, Bob Schneider, War, Arrested Development, Eli Young Band, Marshall Tucker Band, The Fabulous Thunderbirds and Will Hoge.

The Cover Letter 

Constant movement, gripping melodies, and energetic performances make this five-piece band captivating. With their rolling beats, tight vocal harmonies, and rustically familiar sound, you can’t help but fall in love with The Cover Letter.

With an ethereal blend of guitar and keys, a propelling bass line and split-stage percussion, The Cover Letter boasts an enthralling and compelling sound.

Formed in 2013, the band draws parallels from early Fleetwood Mac, Arcade Fire, and Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros while melodically gritty lead vocals offer a soothing and rugged edge to their expressive music. These musicians showcase their versatility by playing multiple instruments on stage.

With a live show that’s never static, the band members seamlessly swap their instruments, leaving the audience with a unique and diverse experience.

The Cover Letter released their self-titled EP in early February.

Listen to our Statesboro Revue & The Cover Letter playlist on Spotify now!

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Century Singers of Texas A&M


On the evening of February 13th at 8:00 PM, the Grand Stafford will be hosting the Century Singers of Texas A&M for a night of melodious celebration and romance. The Century Singers is a talented troupe who represent Texas A&M within the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra and Chorale as well as entertain alongside Texas A&M Chamber Orchestra to create classic and groundbreaking performances. Originally named New Tradition Singers in 1971 due to being the first co-ed chorus and organization at Texas A&M, they were eventually renamed the Century Singers to honor the 100 years that Texas A&M had been established in 1976. Under the direction of Dr. Eric Posada, the group has traveled both across the country and around the world, as well as annually touring around Texas during the spring to metropolitan cities such as Houston. They have recorded a version of the poem “In Memoriam” written by David Harrigan, which is heard at every Aggie Muster around the world. Amongst the many talented composers, the group has represented and/or sung on behalf of Ola Gjeilo, Johannes Brahms, and Michael John Trotta, who is writing an exclusive piece for the group to debut at Carnegie Hall. The Century Singers will be performing in New York City at Carnegie Hall this upcoming March and thus have prepared an incredible evening for the Bryan/College Station area to benefit their trip to the prestigious venue. 

So, grab your sweetheart and treat them to an enchanting evening of romance and the musical art of the Century Singers while supporting talented students in their endeavor to perform at Carnegie Hall. Purchase your ticket here.



Today’s Artist Spotlight shines upon the Houston-native band, Vox Vocis. Focusing on alternative indie/progressive rock music styles since 2011, the band is made up of Alex Vaquera belting vocals and playing guitar, Alejandro Nunez strumming the bass, and Zachary Burton beating the drums, whom all come together to collaborate, creating a sound that’s both original and enticing. This up and coming band’s sound has been said to be comparable to bands that of Coheed and Cambria and The Receiving End of Sirens. But what makes Vox Vocis unique from the others is their ability to use the art of storytelling to produce a sense of adventure, the band walking side by side with its listeners, as they travel through ballads beckoning for deeper understanding. The mission behind the band’s purpose is expressed through the definition of their name, “vox vocis,” which means “voice of voice,” giving you a peek of the greater picture painted through their lyrics. Each of their albums, “The Winter” (2014) and “In the Arms of the Sun” (2016), tell a tale about independence, Cadence, and finding the music, the voice, within the journey. “In the Arms of the Sun,” being their first full-length album, will be the band’s main focus of the evening’s experience. 

So come on out Wednesday evening to rock out with these boys as well as our friends And Then Suddenly, Luca, Electric Astronaut, and Rogues Among Us and get ready to embark on an adventure you didn’t know you needed. 

Check out the exclusive Spotify playlist here. And then buy your tickets here. See you at the show!


Gary P. Nunn with Jonny Gray

Grand Stafford Theater is bringing you some good ole’ country this Saturday with musical acts Gary P. Nunn and Jonny Gray.


Gary P. Nunn

Born in Oklahoma, Gary P. Nunn found his heart’s true home in the Lone Star State after his family moved to West Texas when he was in sixth grade. In the town of Brownfield just outside of Lubbock, he was an honors student, excelled in athletics, and started his first band soon after arriving. When he landed in Austin in 1967 to study pharmacy at the University of Texas, he presaged the “cosmic cowboy” movement to come with one of Austin’s favorite bands, The Lavender Hill Express, with the late Rusty Weir. After Willie Nelson, Michael Murphey and Jerry Jeff Walker all moved to town, Nunn was such a pivotal figure on the scene that at one point he was playing bass with all three artists. His talents on keyboards and vocals were also heard on many of the legendary albums from that era.

Gary P. Nunn has been taking Texas to the country and Texas country to the world for some 40 years now, establishing himself as an icon of Lone Star music. A founding father of the progressive country movement out of Austin in the 1970s that changed the face of popular music, Nunn is also an independent music pioneer who continues to oversee his own record label and song publishing companies, manage his own career (with the help of his wife Ruth), and play most every weekend at top music venues throughout Texas and beyond. His composition “London Homesick Blues” — with its internationally known “I wanna go home with the Armadillo” chorus — is a signature Texas country song that was the theme for the PBS concert TV show “Austin City Limits” for nearly three decades. It’s no wonder that All Music Guide hails him as “a Texas music institution.”

And now on TAKING TEXAS TO THE COUNTRY, Nunn continues to musically progress while staying true to his roots. It’s something of a travelogue in song that begins with a cosmic cowboy trip back to a love that once was on “Deja Vu,” and later visits a sorrowful “Denver” and a Cajun Fais do do “Down To Louisiana,” plus takes a restful vacation along a “Mexican Boulevard,” and bops to a bit of Jamaican reggae on “It’s Not Love.” Longing for Texas travels the map on “One State of Mind,” while “Lonesome Lone Star Blues” tours the cities and towns of the Republic.

Jonny Gray

One of the most nominated and awarded musicians at the 2014 Austin Music Awards winning “Folk Band of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” & “Male Vocalist of the Year.” Jonny Gray has had an amazing year with appearances on The Today Show, Vh1, and MTV as well as touring Mexico and multiple Festivals after his finalist run on the hit television program ‘The Voice’. CeeLo Green compared his Voice to Eddie Vedder while Rolling Stone Magazine commented that his voice had a “Bob Dylan esque tone”.

Jonny Gray’s highly anticipated second album Promises Broke (June 9, 2015), recorded at Aerie Studio with producer-engineer Mark Addison (Fastball, David Garza, Ian Moore). He will continue to break new ground this year with dates planned across North America behind the new album.


We look forward to seeing you on Saturday night. In the meantime, listen to their music on Spotify.



A Texas Country Evening With Jake Worthington, Shotgun Rider, and Brad Gomez.


Our friends at Texas Music Pickers are coming back tomorrow, January 28th, and they’re bringing a great group of artists, Jake Worthington, Shotgun Rider, and Brad Gomez, with them! Jake Worthington is a traditional country artist from La Porte, Texas, who received his first big break on NBC’s show, “The Voice,” when he won runner-up during Season 6 in 2014. While his time on the show, Jake released two songs that reached the Top 20 on Billboard Heatseekers. Following his success on “The Voice,” Jake joined the other finalists on The Voice National Tour, where they played some of the largest venues and arenas in some of the biggest cities in the country. In October 2015, Jake released his debut EP that reached #6 on the Billboard South Central chart.

Performing alongside Jake Worthington is the Country Rock band Shotgun Rider. Reigning from the Texas panhandle, the band is made up of Logan Samford, the band’s lead singer, and Anthony Enriquez, the band’s lead guitarist and the primary songwriter for the group. Joined and completed by an impressive band from the Lubbock area, Shotgun Rider is determined to launch their unique style of Country Rock into the expanding Texas Music scene.

Lastly, one of our local favorites, Brad Gomez, will be supporting this top-notch Texas country evening and will not disappoint. He has performed at the Stafford and at venues all around the Bryan/College Station area and is incredibly talented. We are excited to welcome back this young, gifted artist. So, come on out, crack a cold one, and experience a wonderful Texas Country evening with some of the newest talents in town! Get your tickets here.

P.S. Don’t miss out on this Spotify playlist to give you a little sneak peek on an evening you won’t sure forget!

Variety of Artists Kick of Spring Semester at Grand Stafford Theater

To celebrate the start of the spring semester, Grand Stafford Theater is to proud to present four nights of music that will feature talented artists from many different genres and musical backgrounds. Whether you like Americana, pop punk, bluegrass, or Christian hip-hop, one of these shows is sure to be right up your alley.

Rob Baird with Erick Willis
Rob Baird is a Memphis-born musician who captivated Texas’ live-circuit music scene in 2012 with his ruggedly natural sound and earnest singer-songwriter performances. He quickly built himself a dedicated fan base that has stood the test of time. After the success of his first album, Baird stepped down from the Texas music scene to spend time cultivating his newest, most eclectic and crisp collection of songs thus far with “Wrong Side of The River”.

Erick Willis will be complementing Baird’s sound with his soulful melodies and smooth rock along with Texas inspired lyrics. Come check out both of these talented artists on Thursday, January 21st at Grand Stafford Theater.

Slowlikefire with Above It All, With Bright Lights, and On To Omaha
Slowlikefire may have developed from now obsolete bands in the San Antonio music scene, but together they have been able to develop a sound and a live show that is something they have always dreamed of. With a goal of creating passionate, meaningful songs, Slowlikefire released their debut EP in August of 2013 that earned them well-deserved attention and radio time. After a heavy year of touring, Slowlikefire released their first full-length album in May 2015 titled, “City of Echoes.”

Above It All, a pop punk band from Dallas will be joining Slowlikefire. With Reece Clark and Josh Roa-Martinez on guitar and vocals, JoJo Campbell on drums, and Caleb Evans on bass, this young band is sure to put on a great show featuring fresh pop punk music.

On TO Omaha started as a few guys playing music in a bedroom and they haven’t stopped changing since. Based out of Orlando, On To Omaha is a three-piece band that consistently pushes the envelope of Hard Rock.

In an attempt to combine rock music with many sub genres through melodic rhythms and inspiring vocals, With Bright Lights will also be performing alongside our three other talented bands. Come check out all of these bands on Friday, January 22.

The Honey Dewdrops with Landon McGee
The Honey Dewdrops are a Bluegrass-Americana husband and wife duo, also known as Laura Wortman and Kagey Parrish. Their simplistic take on the beauty of songwriting is demonstrated through their genuine and honest performances. Although the road has been their family and biggest influence for the first three albums released, their fourth album “Tangled Country” was created, for the first time, all in one place. The duo said that this album is “a testament to the power of home” and provides a uniquely mesmerizing sound of dynamics and harmonies.

Landon McGee is Grand Stafford Theater’s very own musician in residence. His authentic sound reflects his sincerity and the love and respect he has for music. The creation of his new album, “Kite”, contains easy melodies and an Americana vibe that pairs perfectly with The Honey Dewdrops sincere sound. Come enjoy these two great groups on Saturday, January 23.

Beautiful Eulogy with Seeker and Servant
Beautiful Eulogy is a Portland, Oregon-based group made up of Braille, Odd Thomas, and Courtland Urbano. Their distinct sound is driven by a desire to create worship music that combines its members’ hip-hop roots while incorporating influences from electronic music, folk songs, and traditional hymns. The tracks are lyric-driven, but contain an equally deliberate musical backdrop.

Seeker and Servant strive to make worship music that comes from the heart. Their sole purpose is to proclaim the Gospel through their music; a goal well achieved with their newest album “You Alone Forever” which was released late in 2015. Join us on Sunday, January 24 to enjoy these two great bands.

Texas Music Pickers Presents Jake Worthington, Shotgun Rider, and Brad Gomez
Our friends at Texas Music Pickers are coming back on January 28, and they’re bringing a great group of artists, Jake Worthington, Shotgun Rider, and Brad Gomez. Jake Worthington is a traditional country artist from La Porte, Texas. In 2014, Jake Worthington was named runner-up on Season 6 of NBC’s show, “The Voice.” During his time on the show, Jake released two songs that reached the Top 20 on Billboard Heatseekers. Following his success on “The Voice,” Jake joined the other finalists on The Voice National Tour, where we played some of the largest venues and arenas in some on the biggest cities in the country. In October 2015, Jake released his debut EP that reached #6 on the Billboard South Central chart.

Shotgun Rider is a country rock band from the Texas panhandle made up of Logan Samford, the band’s lead singer, and Anthony Enriquez, the band’s lead guitarist and the main songwriter for the group. Joined and completed by an impressive band from the Lubbock area, Shotgun Rider is driven to launch their unique style of Country Rock into the expanding Texas Music scene.

Brad Gomez is a local artist who has performed at the Stafford and at venues all around the Bryan/College Station area. We are excited to welcome back this young, talented artist. Come check out all three of these musicians on Thursday, January 28.

Artist Spotlight: Rob Baird

Breaking into the scene as a no-frills artist, Rob Baird of Memphis has captivated audiences all over Texas with ease. Over the past five years, Baird rallied a dedicated fan base that grew with the release of I Swear It’s The Truth in 2012. Even with successful airtime on regional radio, Rob Baird wanted to perfect his craft.

rob baird 2

“I’ve really spent a lot of time trying to perfect my writing, or at least trying to figure out who I am and convey that better in my songs, and trying to perfect the live show,“ says Baird.

Upon moving to Austin, Baird was able to create a more unique style incorporating guitars described as both jangly and crunchy. This style is crisscrossed by pedal steel and tasteful organ that stem from his own niche. It’s clear that Baird has excelled in finding his true artistic identity and purpose. Baird has drawn favorable comparisons to artists from the wider Americana landscape like Ryan AdamsJohn Mellencamp, and Tom Petty. His songs reveal a slice of life on the road while tugging on small town emotional chords. He recently returned to Nashville to record Wrong Side of The River, which will be his most diverse and spectacular collection of music yet. Rob Baird is not interested in being a flash-in-the-pan kind of deal, and he hopes to continue touring for a long time.