Photo: Ismael Quintanilla III

Live at Gruene Hall, New Braunfels, TX – August 3, 2018 by Kathy Murray

Hey readers! Yeah, I know, it’s been awhile. It’s been awhile for a lot of things, but in our business, most especially live, in person music shows- We all miss it: The heartbeat and soul of the music and the connection with the audience, pulling us all into that wonderful, euphoric experience that is the SHOW.

One person that has kept the spirit of live performances alive during this pandemic has been Jackie Venson. She has been doing constant cross social media livestream performances since the start of quarantine regulations. I’ll be honest, these livestreams have been the only thing keeping me sane during the COVID entertainment lockdown. Every Wednesday and Saturday nights, she plays live for an hour, maybe a little more, at 9:00pm Central time, on Facebook, Reddit, YouTube, Twitch and Periscope, and occasionally Instagram.

This past Friday, September 25, she released her long awaited live album, ‘Live in Texas’, recorded at the historic Gruene Hall in New Braunfels, Texas. Many legends had graced that stage before her debut that August night in 2018, including Buddy Guy, BB King, Guy Clark and Bo Diddley. The audio of this amazing show is available on all streaming platforms now. 

What a show!! After seeing Jackie play her livestreams for months, performing as just her amazing self, playing with her sampler as a one woman band – which is incredible to watch in itself, it was positively transcendent to see her playing with a full band again. The chemistry between her, Nick Clark on bass, Jon Deaz on keyboards and Rodney “Rodzilla” Hyder on drums was palpable. Constantly smiling, and grooving, they were TIGHT on every song. She played through almost her entire Love Suite album, including two of my favorites, ‘Destruct’ and ‘Patience’, along with some of her home town favorites, ‘Always Free’ and ‘Rollin’ On’.

Venson came out at the end to play a few encores, and I was absolutely thrilled to hear her resurrect a long time favorite of mine, ‘Down Dirty’, from one of her very first EP’s, ‘Rollin’ On’, a song about letting go of the toxic people in your life. She added a fun little call and response to it, which was like whipped cream on top of a sundae, singing, “I don’t want your junk, I just want to have a good time. I don’t want your junk, I just want the funk.”

This show is such an awesome, feel good way to let go of all your cares and worries and just live in the moment of wonderful music and great musicians. I highly recommend checking it out. I’ve included streaming links at the end of the article.

Jackie also has a new studio album, Vintage Machine, coming out on October 30 on all streaming platforms, but it is available via pre-sale now through her merchandise store, on vinyl and CD. I can’t say enough about this album either. Its absolutely fantastic, and I strongly suggest checking it out as well!

Streaming Links for Live In Texas:


Apple Music



Amazon Music


Google Play Music

YouTube Music



Purchase links for Live In Texas:



Google Play

Vintage Machine Pre-Sale:

Jackie Venson Bandcamp Merchandise Store

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