Jamming. Music played just for the simple joy of the doing of it.

Who it is or where it happened isn't important. It happens all the time everywhere you go. If you just stop and listen.


Traci Lamar Hancock RIP

Traci Lamar Hancock lost her battle with ovarian cancer today. 

If you are not familiar with her and her work you may be forgiven for not knowing what a great loss this is for the musical community of Texas and Austin in particular. The influence of the Hancock Family is legendary centered around Tommy X Hancock and the Hancock family band, the Texana Dames

They were in the middle of everything good when I first moved to Austin, and unlike many established artists I met when I was first starting out, they were as friendly and generous as can be. It was the indication of a family, both genetic and by choice, based on love in its purest form.

I met Traci years ago when she got up and sang a wonderful Ranchera with Santiago Jimenez, Jr., who really hated when people wanted to sit in but admitted to me she was one of the best vocalists he had backed up, quite the feat for a gringa from West Texas. (Frankly, I assumed she was Mexican!) Her wonderfully powerful voice, backed by her ever present accordion, coupled with her love of the regional music of Texas added an authentic Tex-Mex tinge to the Dames sound and for a good long while was the soundtrack for the city.

Austin isn't like she used to be and "new" Austin and the newcomers didn't really snap to old line acts like the Dames, for whatever reason. Like for many of us, the work started to trickle and then dry up. Then the diagnosis came. (Here's a photo play of Traci and the Dames entertaining the cancer ward just this last Christmas.)

She had to struggle through her illness for several years now without insurance and the effect has left her family more than a little bit strapped. If you feel moved and if you have the means, please see about making a contribution to defray the many expenses that the family is now burdened with. Follow this link to make a donation.

Peace and love.
May her memory be a blessing to us all.


Email addresses and the advance of History

I entered the internet in 1993, stumbling UK record distributors' Bad Livers page on a Mosaic browser while at my day job at the University of Texas. By 1994 I had an AOL account and soon after switched to local provider called Real/Time Communications. I set up my email address  - mdrubin (at) bga.com then and that's been my address ever since. I own markrubin.com and used that as a mirror address until hackers goofed me and I had to drop it.

I was informed that the new corporate owners of Real/Time have decided to no longer support the bga.com address (much like the time they installed an aggressive spam blocker, didn't tell me and I didn't get any emails for over 2 weeks.)

Therefore, friends and associates, you will no longer be able to find me at the email address I've carried for nearly 18 years. I have switched to a Gmail account and my prefix is "texasrubinchik".

That is all.