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Love and War in Texas

Grapevine, Texas

Love and War in Texas is dedicated to all things Texas: Texas food, Texas culture and, above all, Texas music.

“It’s a little country with a little rock — it’s a little more ragged or rugged,” said Shawn Landry with the Grapevine location of Love and War in Texas, describing the Texas sound.

The restaurant-bar-music venue has two locations: in Plano and in Grapevine. The Grapevine location has live music every night Wednesday through Saturday, with bigger-name bands and headliners such as Zane Williams, Walt Wilkins, Roger Creager and 1100 Springs playing there on Friday and Saturday nights.

During spring, summer and early fall, concerts are held outside on the restaurant’s 3,000-square-foot patio, which features a stage, a dance area, full-service dining and a brand-new patio bar that opened during the summer. The patio is about two-thirds covered, so people can dine and dance under the awning or “under the stars,” Landry said. When colder weather rolls around, usually in November, the shows move inside.

In May, Love and War in Texas started Lone Star Saturday Nights. Lone Star Beer sponsors the event, and DJs with local radio station 95.9 The Ranch come in and broadcast live from Love and War in Texas, even playing some of the live music on the station.

Most groups opt to eat on the patio, although some dine inside the restaurant. The restaurant bar just celebrated its grand reopening in August after being completely remodeled. The fare is all Texas all the time and features Tex-Mex, Texas-raised beef and Gulf seafood. Even the menu is divvied into cuisines from six regions: the Border, the Crossroads of Texas, the West Texas Plains, the Hill Country, the East Texas Piney Woods and the Texas Gulf Coast.


The Crooked Road

Southwest Virginia

For many years, John Hollandsworth was a postal carrier in a community in southwest Virginia. But few of the people on his route probably knew that he travels the world playing and teaching autoharp, that he makes autoharps or that he’s in the Autoharp Hall of Fame, right alongside “Mother” Maybelle Carter.

“That’s the level of talent here,” said Jack Hinshelwood, executive director of the Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail. “Far and away, the Crooked Road is a place you visit to take in this music; but you’re really taking in the culture of where it lives and breathes as an everyday part of life.”

The Crooked Road is a 333-mile route winding through more than 50 communities in southwest Virginia. Along the way, travelers will find nine major music venues and destinations, including the 800-seat Carter Family Fold and the city of Bristol, known as the Birthplace of Country Music. The Crooked Road has another 60 festivals and smaller venues — restaurants, town squares and country stores — that contribute to the road’s year-round music scene.

The region’s music is a cornucopia of cultures. German and Scotch-Irish immigrants brought their fiddles, the English brought their hymns and ballads, and African slaves brought early versions of the banjo. Those influences mashed up to create the distinctive gospel-country-bluegrass sound of southern Virginia.

The Crooked Road is introducing a new festival to its roster in 2015: the Mountains of Music Homecoming Festival, June 12-20. The festival will feature 30 to 40 concerts over nine days at locations along the Crooked Road. Although it will include national and international touring artists, about three-quarters of the musicians will be from the region, Hinshelwood said.