Dallas Wayne & Redd Volkaert | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Dallas Wayne & Redd Volkaert 

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Dallas Wayne is a perfect guest star for Robbie Fulks's Secret Country series: while mainstream automatons and self-conscious alt hacks hog all the attention, Wayne just keeps building great albums out of honky-tonk fundamentals. On I'm Your Biggest Fan (Koch) the stirring melodies are as familiar as a favorite shirt, backed with a classic blend of twangy guitar and swerving pedal steel, and Wayne's lyrics tell tales of romantic defeat rendered in slyly funny wordplay, from the tear-in-my-beer pity party of "Crank the Hank" ("I think I'll paint the town my favorite shade of black / So bartender crank the Hank and crack open the Jack") to the mistreated woman reaching the end of her rope in "She's Good to Go" ("'cause all the good is gone"). It's not all about misery, of course: a cheerful meathead takes center stage in "Tex-tosterone" ("Well my mama said, 'Boy, you're just like your dad' / I said, 'Hey, that's good,' she said, 'Uh-uh, that's bad / He was dumb as a rock with an eye for the ladies / Wasn't good for nothin' 'cept makin' babies'"), and "Junior Samples" chronicles the bottomless appetite of the song's oversize protagonist. Alongside superb guitarist Redd Volkaert--sideman to Merle Haggard since the late 90s--Wayne will front a band that includes Fulks, drummer Gerald Dowd, and pedal steel player Joe Goldmark. Sun 6/19, 7 PM, Old Town School of Folk Music, 4544 N. Lincoln, 773-728-6000 or 866-468-3401, $20, $18 for Old Town School members, $16 for seniors and kids. All ages.

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