DJ D-Bay (Twilite Lounge): As it’s been stated here before, it’s increasingly obvious that Twilite Lounge is the most grown up and aesthetically balanced bar in Deep Ellum. You could really make a case for Black Swan, and while I love that place, its exclusivity and low capacity make for a risky bet if you’re simply meeting a friend for a chat.
Twilite Lounge is both music-oriented and sports friendly, and yet it’s not entirely beholden to either of those things. It’s sometimes lively, sometimes quiet, and never obnoxious. As a semi-venue, it occasionally hosts live shows, but not always. The game may be on, but it’s not exactly a sports bar either. This all makes sense considering that the place was founded by Danny Balis, a known local musician who once played in the tragically disbanded Sorta, and is currently a member of The King Bucks and Calhoun. Balis also puts on the occasional solo performance. Finally, he is a producer on The Hardline, a ratings-dominating show on 1310 The Ticket that also focuses on sports and music. His founding partner is Jess Barr, who you may know from his decades of work in Slobberbone.
Tonight’s event at Twilite Lounge will lightly blur that line between sports and music, as the Cowboys game will certainly be on, and following that, Mr. Balis will be selecting some tracks from his extensive vinyl collection. Balis is not your average DJ, as he will be focusing on dusty country music tracks, old school R&B, and even jazz, along with the requisite rock, pop, and blues. I asked the artist for some track selections of what he might play this evening, and he sent along the following. He even included some personal reasons explaining his affection for these particular sides:
Uncle Tupelo—”Sauget Wind”: “To my knowledge it was only released as a 45,” Balis said. “I bought it about 20 years ago.” Since tonight’s event will be all vinyl, “it made sense,” he said.
Merle Haggard—”Harold’s Super Service”: According to Balis, this is a “fun track about a gas station attendant who dies and goes to heaven.” It’s a “rare unreleased tune off of his live album, Okie from Muskogee.”
Taj Mahal—”Six Days on the Road”: Though everyone from Faiport Convention to Johnny Rivers have takes on this late 20th Century trucking standard, Balis says that he prefer’s Taj Mahal’s 1968 interpretation. “I heard this version of the country classic a few years back in Terlingua,” says Balis. “It instantly became the definitive interpretation for me.”
Sonny Clark—”Blue Minor”: For the final sample, Balis offered a perfectly utilitarian reason for playing this lengthy track, and it’s one to which DJs and selectors everywhere can relate: “10 [minutes], 12 [seconds]; jazz track perfect for restroom/smoke break,” he said.
Elsewhere this evening—
“Cool Out” (Crown and Harp): Jay Clipp is tonight’s guest.
Beyonce (American Airlines Center): It feels like Beyonce was just here, but I doubt anyone will complain. We have more info for you here. Considering last week’s Kanye appearance, as well as JT, and even the Jingle Ball, this has been the biggest concert month in recent memory. It even dwarfs the festival-ridden March.
Wizard/Mikey Rodge/Mekanix/Kotecki/Drumsoldier (Vietnam): MC Etiquette will host this unusual DJ night, which features a variety of food and drink you probably won’t find at most dance events. The entertainment begins at 10 pm and ends at 2 am.
Other Monday events—
“Vinyl Tap” (Double Wide)
Image: Twilite Lounge. Credit: Jason Sharp, for D Magazine.