I arrived at the venue a little late, and was bowled over by Deke Dickerson playing "Peroxide Blonde," and obscure covers such as the Merle Travis classic, "Gambler's Guitar." Dickerson, Biller, and Wakefield flew through jump blues and boppin' Western swing reminiscent of Bob Wills' little brother, Billy Jack Wills. Dickerson played hot Joe Maphis-inspired instrumentals on his vintage double-neck Mosrite guitar, sang a classic surf-style hot rod tune, did several rockabilly numbers, belted out a ballad that brought Roy Orbison to mind, and performed a song on bass saxophone. I ranted for weeks following the show, and told friends to keep their eyes open for a return engagement, because Deke Dickerson is not to be missed.

Dickerson, who was born in Missouri, founded the critically acclaimed surf/garage band, Untamed Youth, in the '80s, and later teamed with Dave Stuckey to form the late Dave and Deke Combo in the '90s. The hardest working double-neck guitar player around, he plays more than 250 dates a year internationally — throughout the United States, Europe, Japan, and Australia. But Dickerson only shows up in this part of Occupied Mexico about once a year. Touring behind his recent release, Rhythm, Rhyme, and Truth, Dickerson will play at Casbeers on Thursday, October 31, with a sack full of new tunes and great old numbers.

I called up Dave to see if he would be appearing with Dickerson this time through the city, but he explained: "Deke does a different theme from tour to tour." I'm going to miss seeing Biller & Wakefield, but I'm confident that Dickerson's band, the Ecco Fonics, will contain musicians of an exceptional caliber. And this time, I'm getting to Casbeers early.

Deke Dickerson & The Ecco Fonics
Thursday, October 31
1719 Blanco Road

More by Hank Harrison



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