Roberts, Darrel

Born and raised on the Gulf Coast, Darrel Roberts began writing at age fourteen. He knew he liked it and he liked playing.  That’s what he wanted to do.
His family moving to Texas only exposed him to different forms of music and with it came opportunities to play and write in different genres. Classic rock, country, western swing even Latino music was all there and interesting.By age 18, he was in a progressive rock band doing all original material and opening for the name acts coming around. Argent being the first. After that a newly formed vocal trio was formed and immediately began opening for acts such as B.B King, John Hammond Jr.and Ike and Tina Turner. Texas was giving great opportunities.
In the seventies came the rise of redneck rock after Willie Nelson played the Armadillo World Headquarters in Austin. That opened a whole new door and it became okay for “hippies” to play country music and incorporate other influences into the music being written and performed. Says Darrel, ” That time in my life was so productive as a player, a writer and artist. I got to play with some tremendous writer artist and then was given the opportunity to write with some people who were big influences on what I’ve become. It’s indescribable the amount of music that was being put out at that time”.
Moving back to the Gulf Coast proved to be productive as well. Arriving at the Flora-Bama in 1981 he discovered a place where there were a bunch of folks writing and playing some really good music. The owner, Joe Gilchrist, encouraged and helped motivate the young writers there and gave an outlet to put songs to the public as well as being able to play and entertain the crowds of folks that came in. “We were just a bunch of young guys and gals that happened to play and write while living on the beach where most of us grew up. “Joe was great. We’d play till closing time then grab some beer and go sit on the beach and play or go somewhere and write. There couldn’t have been a better atmosphere for creativity anywhere on the planet. Joe also got some of the big writers come down from Nashville, some real legends. That became an avenue to network with some really great writers. Because of his efforts a lot of my writing and playing heroes became my pals and they still are today”.
Some writers he’s written with include Red Lane, Allen Rhoady, John Joiner, Larry T. Wilson, David Johnson. Some folks he shared the stage with, played with, opened for include (but not all), Rock Killough and the Dixie Flyers, Sonny Throckmorton, Bruce Channell, Mickey Newbury, Water Oak, Leon Raines, B.W. Stevenson, Jerry Jeff Walker, B.B King, John Hammond Jr., Ike and Tina Turner, Johnny Winter, Jerry Reed, Ray Price, Kinky Freidman, Asleep At The Wheel, Livingston Taylor, Dave Grisman, Leon Russell, Jody Paine, Tanya Tucker, George Jones, Billy Joe Shaver, Whitey Shafer, Johnny Duncan. That’s enough for now.
Performing at every Frank Brown International Songwriters’ Festival since its inception, Darrel is one of the most recognizable and fun to listen to writers around. You’ll see him involved with many other writers as a part of their act as well.

Posted in 2018 Featured Performers, Names O-S.