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Friday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 23 Dec 2011 8:06 AM

Today in the roundup: A local producer’s 20-album 2011, the year in theater and holiday essays.


DEAR JOHN: Unless you’re involved in the local music scene, you may not be familiar with John Congelton. But you’re certainly aware of the artists the Dallas producer has worked on records for: St. Vincent, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Okkervil River and Explosions In The Sky. And that’s just a handful of the TWENTY artists he’s had a hand in producing albums for this year out of Elmwood Recordings, the studio he runs with Stuart Sikes. That high motor has gotten NPR’s attention, who called Congelton up to ask him about his prolific year. And he says that he still has other aspirations beyond producing. “I think I’m better at producing than I am at being a songwriter,” he says. “But it doesn’t change the fact that I still have a desire to play and write songs. I’ve never wanted to be a career musician. But I still love to play and write. It’s a big part of who I am.”

YEAR IN THEATER: Another day, another end-of-the-year list. This one’s courtesy of Elaine Liner, who wraps up the year in theater for the Dallas Observer.  Among those receiving pats on the back: Ochre House, Second Thought Theater (and its steamy Red Light Winter) and Contemporary Theatre of Dallas. And earlier in the week, I somehow missed Front Row’s theater wrap. The Undermain and Theatre Three figure prominently in it.

ON HOLIDAYS PAST: The staff over at has come up with a cool idea to mark the holidays. Several writers have crafted essays about holidays gone by and recorded them as audio essays. Give ’em a listen for a chance to put a voice with a byline.