SOUNDS of Central Texas
Welcome to SOUNDS, a weekly spotlight on Central Texas music and musicians. We’re gonna kick this off with two bands: Moon Dogs and Amber Dreams.
By DAVID STONE, Our Town Temple
Jaden Rudloff and Waylon Floyd are 19 and 18 years old respectively, but they have been playing together for about 10 years.
“We’ve had three or four bands, but lately we’ve decided to get serious about this,” Rudloff said this week. “Waylon and I are the two permanent members of Moon Dog, and we have a backing band that changes personnel quite often.”
Both Rudloff and Floyd play multiple instruments, and they recorded an album with just the two of them.
“Waylon is somewhat of a prodigy,” Rudloff said. “He can play anything. On our album, Howl at the Moon, he plays three guitar tracks and drums. I play bass, keyboards and cover the vocals.”
“Our music is a blend of classic rock and southern rock,” he said. “We’ve listened to a lot of Marshall Tucker, Black Sabbath and Whiskey Myers.”
“I know we are young, but while most kids our age were playing video games, we were buying energy drinks at 7-ELEVEN and jamming all night. The neighbors loved us.”
The band submitted a song called Come on Home for the premiere of SOUNDS.
“We were listening to some Creedence Clearwater Revival and decided we would write a war song,” Rudloff said. “We’ve been keeping up with what’s going on in Ukraine, and we just put our feelings into a song.”
Proceeds from purchases of Howl at the Moon on Amazon and iTunes benefit the World Food Program.
“It helps provide food for bombing victims in Ukraine,” he said. “It’s not a lot, but it’s our way of helping those people out.”
Rudloff plans on attending McLennan Community College next year to study audio engineering. The band will be performing at a music festival in Ballinger on April 30, then hopes to get booked at venues in Temple and Belton.
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Now you know the back story, so sit back and listen to Come on Home by the Moon Dogs.
EVERYTHING MUSIC WELCOMED
This is Our Town Temple’s first issue of SOUNDS. It will become a regular part of our Thursday issue, and will feature local musicians, music venues and recording studios — anything related to music. Bands and musicians must have recorded original music to be included. Please contact David at OurTownTemple@gmail.com.
Amber Dreams delights crowd
If you caught the husband and wife duo Amber Dreams at Down@The Yard earlier this month, you were no doubt impressed.
Ricky Rasura mesmerized the crowd with his harp magic while wife Amber delivered haunting vocals that chilled to the bone. Great show.
“Our music is described as indie pop, and it’s kind of trippy,” said Amber Rasura, the group’s vocalist and songwriter. “I write the lyrics, Ricky writes the harp parts.”
The couple have been performing together for about seven years.
“I grew up here,” Amber said. “But we’ve been in San Jose, Calif., for several years. We were performing around the Bay Area but decided to slow down, have kids and concentrate on recording music.”
“We really haven’t played live in about two years until First Friday,” she said. “I had a baby in fall 2019, then the pandemic hit and there was no live music. Ricky was scheduled to play with five orchestras and all five performances were all cancelled.”
The couple used the break to work on an album, Songs for the Melancholy Soul.
“It was released in June 2021 but it has been hard to publicize it without live performances. We have done some things virtually.”
The couple returned to Central Texas in August and is getting back into the music scene.
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Here's Ghost Town. Amber said it is one of her favorites:
LIVE BEATS NEAR YOU
April 15, Friday
Live acoustic music at BJ’s Brewery Tasting Room, 602 Central, featuring Wade Ralson, Brian Garrison and Shelley Boley. 6 to 9 p.m.
April 17, Sunday
Joseph Mach live at Barrow Brewing in Salado, 4 p.m.
April 18, Monday
Carvin Jones blues and rock show live at The Beltonian Theatre. 9 p.m.
April 22, Friday
Aaron Watson with William Beckmann live at Schoepf’s BBQ. Gates open at 6, show at 7.
April 22, Friday --
Foreigner and The Fabulous Thunderbirds live at The Expo. Tickets start at $38. Concert starts at 8 p.m.
Temple College’s Vocal Point, presents the musical The Theory of Relativity on April 22-23 in the Jackson-Graeter Backstage Theatre. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. both nights. Tickets are $5 at the door and students are free.
April 23, Friday
Craig Howell Band live at Bo’s Barn. 8 p.m. to midnight.
Sounds Over Salado Music Festival features White Denim and The Stone Foxes. 11 bands over two days, including Nic Collins, son of legendary rocker Phil Collins. Tickets: https://radiomilk.ticketbud.com/sounds-over-salado-2022
April 24, Sunday
Vineyard Voice, formerly Central Texas Master Singers, will deliver an orchestrated concert at 6 p.m. at Immanuel Baptist Church, located at 1401 W. Central Avenue in Temple.
Best-selling New York Times author Dion Leonard and his dog, Gobi, visit with students at Kennedy-Powell Elementary School on Wednesday. Courtesy photo
Renowned author visits TISD students
Our Town Temple
Students at Temple’s Kennedy-Powell Elementary had two special visitors Wednesday as New York Times best-selling author Dion Leonard visited the campus along with his dog Gobi.
Leonard spoke to the students about how he met Gobi and how that experience helped lead to the creation of his bestseller Finding Gobi.
Leonard was a corporate executive in sales and marketing when he decided it was time to make a complete lifestyle change. Leonard took up ultra-marathon running and during one of his races, he had another life-changing experience.
He was competing in a 155-mile ultra race through the Gobi Desert when a stray dog began running alongside him. The dog became his running companion through the rest of the grueling seven-day event, and the two formed an unbreakable bond that would become the ultimate challenge of overcoming adversity to achieve the unachievable.
Leonard would go on to adopt the dog and turn the story of their meeting and friendship into the basis for his book. Finding Gobi has gone on to become a bestseller and a movie based on the book is also in the works.
Leonard has since published another book, Lara the Runaway Cat, and he also is an inspirational speaker. He also still runs ultras. Leonard shared the story of meeting Gobi with the students and he hopes they took a specific message home from his visit.
“Be kind to others and be kind to animals,” he said. “You never know where life can take you. It is an amazing journey and one act of kindness changed my life when I met Gobi. I hope the kids learn something from that.”
“If you had told me when I was a 13-year old boy that I would be a New York Times best-selling author with a movie deal, I never would have believed that,” he said. “If this story inspires someone to go out and do something amazing, then I’ve touched someone’s life and that brings me a lot of joy.”
Kennedy-Powell librarian Kristin Childress helped organize a fundraising read-a-thon for the school’s students. The hard work the students put into that project, along with the money raised, helped make Leonard’s visit a reality.
Childress says she is proud of the student’s hard work and is excited that their efforts helped lead to what may be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
“I’m not sure how many of our students would have ever gotten the chance to meet and hear from a best-selling author in person,” said Childress.
“Now, they can hold this book, point to Dion Leonard’s name and say that they have seen and heard from him. To be able to hear the story about this book directly from him is an incredible opportunity and will hopefully lead to a lifetime love of reading for some of these students.”
Students also could purchase autographed copies of Finding Gobi to take home after the presentation.
THURSDAY | APRIL 14, 2022
To include your events in What’s Happening and Today’s Best Bets, email information to OurTownTemple@gmail.com. Photos are welcome to for use in the publication as space permits!
In 1894, dozens of Texas Rangers spent weeks in Temple. Why?
On this day in 1933, the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the first state museum in Texas, opened in Canyon. The museum was an outgrowth of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Society, founded in 1921 by faculty and students of West Texas State Teachers College, and is a cooperative effort between the society, which owns and controls the collections, and the State of Texas, which provides and maintains the facilities through West Texas A&M University and the Texas A&M University Board of Regents. In addition to its major anthropology, geology, paleontology, and natural history collections, the museum has extensive materials on the ranching industry, the Plains Indians, and the oil and gas industry, and galleries devoted to American and European art with an emphasis on such Texas artists as Frank Reaugh and Harold Bugbee.
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On this day in 1935 a great dust storm covered the Texas Panhandle town of Pampa, inspiring Woody Guthrie to write the song "So Long, It's Been Good To Know You." Guthrie had moved to Pampa in 1929. Performing with bands at nightclubs and radio stations in the Panhandle, he found his calling as lyricist and musician and began developing skills that later gained him a reputation as a writer, cartoonist, and down-home philosopher. He married a Pampa girl, Mary Jennings, in 1933 and experienced the pain of the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, sources of his many songs that appealed to his fellow sufferers. When the great storm of April 14, 1935, occurred, some Pampans thought that the end of the world was upon them and that there was just time for final goodbyes. Tired of dust and poverty, Guthrie left for Los Angeles in 1937.
OurTownTemple@gmail.com | (254) 231-1574
TODAY’S TEMPLE TRIVIA ANSWER: The Pullman Railroad Car Company, manufacturer of passenger cars, cut the wages of its employees. That set in motion a wave of violence among union railroad workers all over the country, including in Temple. The Rangers were dispatched to Temple to maintain the peace and breakup any strike-related violence.