Dallas/Fort Worth BLUES Timeline

A few important dates and events in Dallas/Fort Worth blues history

Last Update 11/2/23

Compiled by Don O.
submissions and corrections encouraged and will be acknowledged.
events marked * are not DFW blues events, but are important blues landmarks
No claims to completeness are made!  :)  

1912 -----
Hart Wand publishes Dallas Blues in Oklahoma City    
*W.C Handy writes "Memphis Blues"-often credited as first blues title
N---- Blues published by Bush and Gerts, Dallas, portions used later used in recordings by "Blind" Lemon Jefferson
1914 -----
*W.C Handy writes "St. Louis Blues" -often credited as first real blues song
1912-1917 (approx)
"Blind" Lemon Jefferson moves to Dallas 
    article on Blind Lemon Jefferson's 1997 headstone
    visit to Blind Lemon's gravesite in 2010
Leadbelly moves to Dallas
1917 -----        
Leadbelly imprisoned for murder
1920 -----
*Mamie Smith records "Crazy Blues"-first big blues hit
1920-23 -----
T-Bone Walker leads "Blind" Lemon Jefferson around Deep Ellum
1922 -----

Buster Smith moves to Dallas
1926 -----

"Blind" Lemon Jefferson records "Long Lonesome Blues" for Paramount in Chicago
"Blind" Lemon Jefferson becomes the first commercially successful blues man
1927 -----
"Blind" Willie Johnson records in Dallas
Coley Jones/Dallas String Band records "Dallas Rag" also recorded in Dallas
Blind Willie Johnson records in Dallas
Coley Jones/Dallas String Band records in Dallas
1929 -----
"Blind" Lemon Jefferson  dies in Chicago, buried in Wortham, TX
Alex Moore records in Dallas
Billiken Johnson records in Dallas
Coley Jones/Dallas String Band records in Dallas
Bo Jones records in Dallas
Jake Jones records in Dallas
T-Bone Walker records Trinity River Blues and Wichita Falls Blues in Dallas as "Oak Cliff" T-Bone
Roosevelt Sykes and Stump Johnson record in Dallas
T-Bone Walker leads house band at the Jim Hotel in Fort Worth
1934 -----
T-Bone Walker moves to California
Buster Smith writes "One O'Clock Jump"
Dallas Jamboree Jug Band records in Dallas
1937 -----
Robert Johnson Records 12 sides for Vocalion at 508 Park Avenue in Dallas
Black Ace records for Decca in Dallas
Smokey Hogg records for Decca in Dallas
Alex Moore  records for Decca in Dallas
1943 -----
Rose Room opens in Dallas
1945 -----
Frankie Lee Sims gets out of the army and settles in Dallas
1948 -----
Little Son Jackson records for Gold Star in Houston
1949 -----
Frankie Lee Sims records first sides for Bluebonnet in Dallas
1951 -----
Rose Room becomes Empire Room
1952 -----
Zuzu Bollin Records for Torch in Dallas
1953 -----
Frankie Lee Sims records "Lucy Mae" for Specialty
Kat's Karavan R&B show signs on WRR
1954 -----
Little Son Jackson injured in car wreck, gives up music
Lowell Fulson records "Reconsider Baby" in Dallas
1957 -----
Frankie Lee Sims records for Specialty label
1958-9 -----
Nightcaps record for Vandan in Dallas
1960 -----
Frankie Lee Sims records for Fire in NYC
Little Son Jackson records for Arhoolie in Dallas
Alex Moore records for Arhoolie in Dallas
Black Ace records for Arhoolie in Fort Worth
Cuzzin Lenny becomes first black DJ in Dallas
1963 -----
Freddie King moves to Dallas
1966 -----
R&B TV show The Beat records 26 episodes in Dallas
1967 -----
Kat's Karavan R&B show ends on WRR
1969 -----
Alex Moore records in Europe for Arhoolie
1970 -----
Frankie Lee Sims dies
Jimmie Vaughan moves to Austin
1972 -----
Black Ace dies in Fort Worth
Stevie Ray Vaughan moves to Austin
1976 -----
Freddie King dies, Dallas
Little Son Jackson dies, Dallas
1977 -----
Juke Jumpers formed in Fort Worth
1978 -----
Anson and the Rockets formed in Dallas
Fabulous Thunderbirds record first album at Sumet studio in Dallas
1981 -----
ZZ Hill records "Down Home Blues"
Anson and the Rockets record first album for Blacktop
1983 -----
Stevie Ray Vaughan releases Texas Flood
KNON FM signs on in Dallas
1984 -----
ZZ Hill dies
1985 -----
R.L. Griffin opens Blues Alley
1986 -----
Sam Myers joins Anson and the Rockets
Stevie Ray Vaughan moves back to Dallas
1987 -----
Alex Moore receives Lifetime Achievement Award from National Endowment for the Arts
1988 -----
Anson and the Rockets win Album and Band of year at W.C. Handy Awards
Zuzu Bollin records for Dallas Blues Society
1989 -----
Alex Moore dies, Dallas
Willie Willis Records for Soul Staff
1990 -----
Mike Morgan & the Crawl cut first album for Blacktop
Zuzu Bollin dies, Dallas
Stevie Ray Vaughan killed in helicopter accident, buried in Dallas
1991 -----
Smokin Joe Kubek & Bnois King record first album for Bullseye
1993 -----
Topcat Records formed in Dallas, releases compilation CD
Peter Meyer films part of Can't You Hear the Wind Howl in Dallas, starring Keb' Mo'
1994 -----
Anson & the Rockets win band of year award at W.C. Handy Awards
Tutu Jones & U.P. Wilson record for JSP
Henry Qualls records for Dallas Blues Society
Pat Boyack & Prowlers record first album for Bullseye
1995 ------
Big Al Dupree records for Dallas Blues Society
Willie Willis records for Trix
Tutu Jones runner-up Best New Artist, Living Blues Critics poll
Topcat Records sells catalog to Blacktop, recapitalizes
First annual Bedford Blues Festival
First annual Robert Ealey Blues Festival
1996 ------
Johnny Moeller and Paul Size record for Dallas Blues Society
Topcat records Texas Blues Women and Holland K. Smith
JSP records Andrew "Jr Boy" Jones, U.P. Wilson, Bob Kirkpatrick, Alanda Williams, and Joe Coronado.
Levtron records Henry Qualls, Big Al Dupree, Jr Boy Jones, Big Charles Young
Memo Gonzalez records for Stumble Records
Willie Willis' "Downhome in Dallas" released by Trix Records
Tutu Jones records for Bullseye, charts #12 on Living Blues radio poll, nominated for W.C. Handy Award
Smokin' Joe Kubek Band and Bnois King chart #1 on October Living Blues radio poll
Dallas Blues features in both Living Blues and Blues Access magazines
1997 ------
Southwest Blues Magazine begins publication in Dallas
Dallas Blues Society Records releases A Tone for My Sins by Denny Freeman
Topcat Records obtains rights to audio and film of Muddy Waters, Big Mama Thornton and others in concert.
Shawn Pittman signs with Cannonball Records
Andrew "Jr. Boy" Jones signs with Bullseye Blues
Long time Dallas blues club Schooners closes
Real Street Blues TV show begins filming in local blues clubs
New headstone donated by blues-L internet group dedicated for Blind Lemon Jefferson in Wortham, Texas  read about it here
KNON releases DFW blues compilation CD
1998  ------
JSP releases Texas Blues Guitar Summit CD with 5 DFW blues artists
Anson Funderburgh, Sam Myers, and Andrew "Jr. Boy" Jones are nominated for W.C. Handy awards.
JSP records Randy McAllister and Cookie McGee
R.L. Griffin Opens Blues Palace #2
First annual Denton Blues Festival
Willie Willis and Big Al Dupree record for Fedora
Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets featuring Sam Myers record for Bullseye Blues
KKDA AM increases blues programming, adds celebrity DJs Ernie Johnson, R.L. Griffin, Bobby Patterson, Millie Jackson
1999 ------
Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets featuring Sam Myers chart #1 on Living Blues radio poll in May
KNON releases second DFW blues compilation CD
Curly "Barefoot" Miller dies, Dallas
R.L. Griffin self releases first U.S. CD
2000 ------
Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets featuring Sam Myers win 8th Handy award
Johnnie Taylor dies, Dallas
Willie Willis dies, Dallas
U.P. Wilson moves to Paris, France
Shawn Pittman moves to Austin
new blues TV show, Da Blues, replaces Real Street Blues
new Dallas Blues Festival competes with Bedford Blues Festival
Smokin' Joe Kubek and Bnois King are cover feature for Blues Access Magazine
Robert Ealey dies, Fort Worth
Blue Cat closes, Dallas
Caravan of Dreams closes, Fort Worth 
DFW blues internet chat group initiated http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NorthTexasBlues/

DFW Blues History Week celebrates 65th anniversary of Robert Johnson's recording session
KNON issues 3rd DFW blues compilation CD

Smokin Joe Kubek and Bnois King chart #1 on February Living Blues Radio Poll
new blues TV show, Deja Blues, begins broadcasting in April
Big Al Dupree dies, Dallas
Al "TNT" Braggs dies, Dallas
Anson and the Rockets featuring Sam Myers chart #1 on the September Living Blues Poll and #2 on the October poll
Henry Qualls dies, Dallas

Anson and the Rockets featuring Sam Myers win W.C Handy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album
Smokin Joe Kubek and Bnois King Chart #1 on Living Blues Poll in August
U.P. Wilson dies, Paris France
KNON moves to new studio on Maple Avenue
Blue Shoe Project holds concert, begins blues in the schools project

Freddie King Blues Foundation formed and holds 2 benefit concerts
KNON releases 4th DFW blues compilation CD

documentation proving 508 Park Avenue as the site of Robert Johnson's Dallas recordings donated to the Library of Congress
Sam Myers passes away in Dallas


K.M. Williams video featured on youtube receives 165,000 hits in just 5 days
House of Blues opens in Dallas

Blue Shoe Project 2004 recording of Dallas show featuring Henry Townsend, Robert Lockwood, Honeyboy Edwards, and Pinetop Perkins
           wins Grammy award for Best Traditional Blues Recording
Craig Hopkins, local author of several books on Stevie Ray Vaughan, awarded the 2009 Keeping the Blues Alive Award by the Blues Foundation

Jim Suhler and Monkey Beat nominated for Rock Blues album of the year at the 2010 Blues Music Awards in Memphis

J&J Blues Bar in Fort Worth closes
Smokin Joe Kubek and Bnois King chart #1 on the June Living Blues Radio Chart
Lucky Peterson, Smokin Joe Kubek, and Bnois King nominated for 2010 Blues Music Awards

Dallas church purchases 508 Park Avenue
Dallas DJ Cuzzin Linnie dies, Dallas
Blind Lemon Jefferson's death certificate discovered in Chicago
Freddie King inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
508 Park Avenue Foundation celebrates the 75th anniversary of Robert Johnson's recording session
KNON releases 5th 
DFW blues compilation CD
KKDA fires all blues DJs and goes automated
KNON releases vinyl blues LP, Texas Blues Radio Volume 5
KKDA sold, switches to Korean programing
Ruf Kutt Blues band song nominated for Blues Music Award
Anson Funderburgh nomininated for 2 Blues Music Awards
Trinity River Blues Society formed
Joe Jonas dies in Dallas
Bobby Patterson named Most Outstanding Blues Singer at Living Blues Awards
Dallas Blues Society Records producer Chuck Nevitt dies in Dallas
Smokin' Joe Kubek dies suddenly while on tour in North Carolina
KNON moves to new studio on North Central Expressway
Anson Funderburgh nominated for Blues Music Award
Big Charles Young dies, Dallas
First Annual Smokin Blues and BBQ Festival in Duncanville
Reverend K.M. Williams suffers brain injury and can no longer perform
First annual Plano Blues and BBQ Festival
Full time blues club Highway 61 South opens as part of the Toyota Music Factory in Irving, closes after 2 months
Will "Smokey" Logg dies, Dallas
Don O. awarded Keeping the Blues Alive award by the Blues Foundation in Memphis
Anson Funderburgh nominated for Blues Music Award
Richard Chalk (Topcat Records) dies, Dallas
KNON studio destroyed by EF3 tornado, continues broadcasting from tower site
Sonny Collie dies, Dallas
KNON moves to Coit Road
All live music events canceled beginning in March due to the Covid 19 virus
Tutu Jones cover feature article in Living Blues Magazine #267
Tyrone Starks dies, Dallas
Jimmie and Stevie Vaughan art project installed at Kiest Park in Dallas
Blues Alley art project completed in Deep Ellum
R.L. Griffin feature article in Living Blues Magazine #274
Larry Lampkin interview in Blues & Rhythm Magazine #367
Zac Harmon cover feature in Living Blues Magazine #277
R.L. Griffin, Bobby Patterson, Gregg A. Smith honored at Jus Blues Music Awards
Larry Lampkin interview in Living Blues Magazine issue #280
Sumter Bruton dies, Fort Worth
J.B. Wynn dies, Fort Worth
R.L. Griffin feature interview in D Magazine
Hash Brown feature interview in Swedish blues magazine Jefferson #216
KNON named Best Dallas Radio Station by D Magazine
Dallas Mavericks choose Trinity River Blues as the theme for their City Edition uniform promotiuon  https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=834478434988167

A few references:
Blues Who's Who-Sheldon Harris, Da Capo Press, 1978.
The Big Book of Blues-Robert Santelli, Penguin, 1993.
The Story of the Blues-Paul Oliver, Chilton Books, 1969.
Meeting the Blues-Alan Govenor, Taylor Publishing, 1988.
Blues and Gospel Records 1890-1943-Robert MW Dixon, John Goodrich, Howard W. Rye, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1997.
Deep Ellum and Central Track-Alan B. Govenar and Jay F. Brakefield, UNT Press 1998.
Stormy Monday, The T-Bone Walker Story-Helen Oakley Dance, LSU Press 1987.
Blues Records 1943-1970, Volume 1 A-K, Mike Ledbitter & Neil Slaven, Record Information Services, 1987.
Blues Records 1943-1970, Volume 2 L-Z, Mike Ledbitter Leslie Fancourt, and Paul Pelletier, Record Information Services, 1995.
Soul to Soul-Keri Leigh, Taylor Publishing, 1993.
The Stevie Ray Vaughan Anthology-C.Lee Hopkins, self-published, 1996.
Living Blues Magazine
Blues Access Magazine
Thanks to Chuck Nevitt and Jim Lowe for Kat's Karavan dates
Thanks to Jim Colegrove for the correct date for the formation of the Juke Jumpers
Handbook of Texas Online

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