Live At Jazz TX

Saturdays, 7 p.m.

The culture of South Texas and America's great gift to the world, jazz music, come together each week on "Live At Jazz, TX," as Nathan Cone and Doc Watkins host an hour of great music, recorded live at Jazz, TX at the historic Pearl Brewery. On-stage and backstage interviews offer insight into the music and performers, and sometimes there's even a magical surprise (kind of like a Cracker Jack prize, but on the radio)!

Aaron Prado was born to be a jazz musician. Seriously. His father George Prado, of the long-running Regency Jazz Band in San Antonio, gave his son the middle name Ellington. While still in the crib, his parents played recordings of classic jazz records by Keith Jarrett and John Coltrane to the newborn baby.

Ben Briseno

To listen to Johnny P and the Wise Guys is to be transported back in time to smoke-filled rooms at the casinos of old in the 1960s. Vocalist Johnny Panzarella has been fronting his band since 2007. Growing up in New York, Panzarella was turned on to singers like Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, and Dean Martin. “It was all around the house, and it rubs off on you. It sticks with you. I always latched on to jazz-oriented music and the standards.”

Despite being from San Antonio, Rick Barroso is steeped in the sounds of the Mississippi Delta. The electricity’s there—but you can hear the roots and soul of the music from his harmonica, and the almost folksy tinge to some of the arrangements.

In this episode of “Live At Jazz, TX,” you’ll hear his take on several Robert Johnson tunes, some original Texas blues, and a stomping version of “My Babe,” originally written by Willie Dixon for Little Walter.

Nathan Cone / Texas Public Radio

This month, Doc Watkins and his Orchestra have been swinging into the Christmas season at Jazz, TX with Big Band Christmas performances of holiday standards. Doc Watkins, bandleader and club owner, says it’s been sold out every night—and the crowd loves the old tunes, for good reason.

The traditional jazz torch is in good hands, thanks to the members of the San Antonio-based Dirty River Dixie Band. The founders, Chris Alvarado and Kris Vargas, were inspired to learn the Dixieland style after hearing Jim Cullum and his band perform at Texas Lutheran University in Seguin. Now, the elder statesman of the style has taken the group under his wing, even providing some early coaching.