Jack Ingram and the Roots of the Texas Country Scene




Kelly, Rich

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The Center for Texas Music History


In May of 2016 Guy Clark, a songwriting giant in both his native Texas and his adopted Nashville, passed away. A week later, a bus of Clark’s Tennessee friends delivered their mentor’s cremated remains to fellow artist Terry Allen’s Santa Fe home for a wake for the legend. The intimate picking party featured a who’s who of alternative country luminaries including Steve Earle, Emmylou Harris, Vince Gill, Joe Ely, Rodney Crowell, Lyle Lovett, and Robert Earl Keen. Among the impressive gathering of singer-songwriters, only two were under sixty years old: Allen’s son Bukka, an accomplished accordionist, and Jack Ingram.1 The 45-year-old Ingram had come a long way from his musical beginnings in Dallas’s Deep Ellum more than twentyfive years earlier. Along with the chance to honor one of his heroes and inspirations, the invitation signaled Ingram’s ascension into the pantheon of Texas’s elite singer-songwriters. Along the way Ingram pushed against the prevailing musical winds, played a key role in reviving fan interest in original Texas country music, and served as the key inspiration for the early artists of the emerging Texas Country scene.



Ingram, Jack, Country music, Texas country


Kelly, R. (2019). Jack Ingram and the roots of the Texas country scene. <i>Journal of Texas Music History, 19</i>(1), pp. 32-47.


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