Date night concert to picking up a guitar
It was 1998ish and I was living in (and B.T.H.O. Bonfire with) McInnis Hall on Northside (which unfortunately got torn down to build some fancy schmancy dorm with a Starbucks in it, but I digress)…. and one night I was on a date with a girl from FHK. We walked over to the Dixie Chicken to get a Freddy Burger and to see this brand new Texas County singer/songwriter named Kevin Fowler, who just so happened to be playing an acoustic set inside that night. Well, Kevin had a little merch table set up, but didn’t have anyone to stand there and sell his merch while he was playing. So, he asked if anyone would help him out, to which my date happily volunteered (because of course she did).
So Kevin is playing, my date is selling merch, and I am sitting there awkwardly by myself eating a cheeseburger. When he finished the show, he hung out at his merch table for a while and talked to all the folks who wanted to say hi. As things started to wind down, and all the merch-selling duties appeared to be over, I asked my date if she was ready to go. This is when she leaned over and informed me that she was just going to stay a little longer and hang out with Kevin for a while and that I could go ahead and go because she would not be walking back to the dorms with me that night. Ouch. As I strolled back across University Avenue to my dorm all alone and confused about the drastic turn of events that had just occurred, I thought to myself…” surely there has got to be something to be learned from this experience”. That’s when it hit me like a ton of bricks….girls like guys that play guitar! And dang it, I needed to learn how to play the guitar! So I did just that.
I guess when it comes down to it, if it had not been for the Dixie Chicken, there would probably not be a Brandon McDermott Band..(not that we are a big deal or anything, but we have a lot of fun playing music). Because after that night I learned how to play guitar, started writing songs, put a Texas Country band together, released some albums and have even shared the stage with Kevin Fowler himself multiple times, who went on to become a huge star in the Texas Music Scene, and by the way turns out is a really nice guy…though when we play shows with him, I definitely don’t let my wife volunteer to sell his merch.
Also 3 of the 4 guys in my band are Aggies.
From left to right
And Rob Koonce, lead guitar, didn’t go to A&M but he did his paramedic training at the fire school and is an Aggie at heart!
Brandon McDermott ‘01, lead singer & guitar.
Sean Gallagher ‘24, bass, Sean is also an army veteran from 82nd Airborne, 103rd Airborne and did tours in Iraq and Afghanistan). He is getting his masters now from A&M.