From the mountains of Far West Texas comes authentic Texas music hot as the desert sun, cool as the mountain rain. Jimmy Ray Harrell and Todd Jagger are The Border Blasters! Veterans of the Austin music scene, Kerrville New Folk Winner Jimmy Ray and Austin Music Award Winner Todd have been making music together since their first gig at Gruene Hall in 1975.
Taking their name from their home in the Texas borderlands and the “X” border radio stations that shaped their musical styles, the Border Blasters’ sound is “Cowboy Swing & Hillbilly Blues” in a lively performance rooted in tight harmonies, raw musicianship and a natural engaging camaraderie. Their music connects with people of all ages.
The Austin-American Statesman says: “You can’t get enough!”
John Conquest’s Music City says more: “Years of experience knit this ensemble into a smooth, ingenious sound, provoking even staid
listeners to at least chair-dance. Jagger & Harrell’s long Austin history includes gigging at the legendary Armadillo World
HQ, the Skyline Club and the original Soap Creek Saloon. Typically Texas eclectic, Jagger’s virtuoso mandolin style melds
country, bluegrass and blues, while Harrell plays guitar, accordion, piano and more. [The Border Blasters]’s smooth
harmonies and lively performance will delight even the most discriminating music fan.”
The Border Blasters are:
- 2010 International Folk Alliance Official Showcase artists
- 2009 Kerrville Folk Festival Main Stage performers
- 2009 International Folk Alliance Official Showcase artists
- 2008 SW Regional Folk Alliance Official Showcase artists
- Third Coast Music Presents (SXSW) Official Showcase artists
In addition to their musical careers together both Harrell and Jagger have lent their talents to other bands as well. In the
early 90’s Todd was the mandolinist with the Austin Lounge Lizards and appeared with them at the Kerrville Folk
Festival, Kuumbwa Jazz Club, the Strawberry Music Festival, on APR’s Mountain Stage and many other venues. During
this time the Lizards won “Best None of the Above Bands” for two consecutive years at the Austin Music Awards. Todd
also was given Honorable Mention as Best Mandolinist in the Austin Chronicle and Music City Readers’ Polls. Jimmy
Ray, as part of the popular duo “Lou-Ray”, won the New Artist Award at Kerrville New Folk Festival, and was a featured
performer on the Main Stage at the Kerrville Folk Festival and on the 1975 Festival LP.
Professionalism is a trademark of Border Blasters which club owners and festival coordinators appreciate. On time, in
tune, ready to make the crowd feel good!
The Border Blasters divide their time between Austin and the Davis Mountains of Far West Texas.
You can also tune in to the KRTS “Border Blast” every Thursday at 11am on KRTS-FM, 93.5, Marfa Public Radio where
the boys dish up a heapin’ helpin’ of good Texas and Americana roots music, and sometimes they’ll get out their axes and
play a few themselves.
People Say Stuff
“As musicians, Jagger and Harrell are both consummate professionals – nimble and at ease in performance. Roots entertainers
in the true sense of the word, they not only draw from the catalogue of the early blues and country performers, but, like those
performers, can engage and entertain a crowd with nothing but themselves, their voices and their acoustic instruments.”
–Andrew Stuart, Feature Writer, The Desert Candle
“These guys are fantastic. An all-star line-up. It’s really, really good.”
— Ray Randall, AmericanaRoots.com
“Love your new CD! Very laid back, spontaneous feel, stripped to the finest essentials. Sorta what I’d imagine playing in a
jukebox in a roadhouse in some border town (in a perfect world, at least). I’m diggin that blues mandolin. I added to the
rotation last night…”
— Cat, DJ, RadioFreeAmericana.com
“I got the new CD in the mail yesterday. Really enjoy it…then what else would I expect?”
–David John, KRTU, Chicken Skin Music
Jimmy Ray Harrell: Vocals, Guitar, Piano, Accordion, Mandolin
Todd Jagger: Vocals, Mandolin, Guitar, Mandocello
(Bassist, drummer and sidemen can be added for the full band situation)
• “Blast From The Past”: 13 track CD featuring legendary Texas artists on both sides of the studio glass: T.J. “Tiny”
McFarland, producer; Joe Gracey, engineer, special musical guests Kimmie Rhodes, Ponty Bone, Alvin Crow, Freddie Krc
and more; remastered and mixed by David Sinko. February 2008. #3 on F.A.R. March/April ‘08, #24 Euro-Americana.
• “it’s TOO MUCH”: 16 track cassette, limited release 1989. Reached Top 20 in airplay at KNON-FM, indie radio and
rotation at other public radio throughout Texas.
• All songs in currently in rotation at KRTS (Marfa, TX), KUT (Austin,TX), KGSR (Austin, TX), KPIG (Freedom, CA),
KNON (Dallas, TX), KRTU (Houston, TX), KSJD (Cortez, CO), 3INR (Australia), American Music (Belgium), ISA Radio
(France), Radio Winschoten (Netherlands), MedicineShow Music (UK), AmericanaRoots.com, RadioFreeAmericana.com,
and many other terrestrial and Internet radio stations around the world..
• Currently recording at Boquillas Records & Recording Studio in Fort Davis, Texas.
The Border Blasters World HQ: www.borderblasters.com