The Wild Side of Life: The Rise of the Honky Tonks, 1940-1950

Introduction: The Wild Side of Life

Music in Austin changed considerably during the 1940s. As the city grew and the war installed bases in its hinterlands, new audiences danced to new styles in new places. This was a Central Texas sea change. University students and orchestras had dominated dances during the previous two decades and live popular music during the Jazz Age-Depression was largely a collegiate affair. By 1950, however, wholly different publics had emerged and placed Western Swing, Rhythm and Blues, and Honky Tonks at the center of the city's music scene.

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