Art&Seek presents This Week in Texas Music History. Every week, we’ll spotlight a different moment and the musician who made it. This week, Texas music scholar Gary Hartman visits a Dallas bowling alley that featured everything from sock hops to glam rock.
You can also hear This Week in Texas Music History on Sunday at precisely 6:04 p.m. on KERA radio. But subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss an episode. And our thanks to KUT public radio in Austin for helping us bring this segment to you. And if you’re a music lover, be sure to check out Track by Track, the bi-weekly podcast from Paul Slavens, host of KXT’s The Paul Slavens Show, heard Sunday night’s at 8.
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On Aug. 16, 2003, the Bronco Bowl in Dallas hosted its final concert. The Bronco Bowl opened in 1961 as a multi-purpose entertainment venue with bowling lanes, pinball machines, an indoor archery range and a miniature golf course. In 1963, owners added a live music venue, which they called the Pit Stop. In 1964, the club’s house band, the Pitmen, made a live recording of their song “Dance, Franny, Dance,” which became a regional hit.
In the early 1980s, the Bronco Bowl was remodeled and expanded. For nearly two decades, it hosted such major acts as David Bowie, Bruce Springsteen, Public Enemy, U2 and the Clash. However, in 2003, the Bronco Bowl was torn down to make way for a Home Depot.
Next time on This Week in Texas Music History, we’ll remember a fiddler who was already turning heads at the age of five.