The Liberty Hill United Methodist Church’s Summer Concert Series is back, and Danny Brooks will be August’s entertainment.
This self-described Southern Soul singer is bringing his mix of blues, country, soul, gospel and mountain music to town this weekend and will play his old classics as well as songs off his new album, “Texassippi Hill Country Soul Man.”
Recorded at Willie Nelson’s Pedernales Studio in Spicewood, the record features a blend of Brooks’ signature songwriting with his guitar/slide, harp-rack and stomp-board mixed in to create an authentically traditional sound.
Born and raised in Ontario, Canada, Brooks told The Independent he was influenced by his mother’s record collection.
“She had a lot of Hank Williams and Reverend Jumpin’ Jim Jericho. He wrote a lot of the gospel stuff Elvis eventually did,” says Brooks. He began playing music in the 1960’s, the only musician in his family.
“I was the only sucker for punishment, I guess,” he says laughing. “But I do say that tongue in cheek. I love what I do, and the music business has been good to me. I not only get to say something, but I get to say something that touches people with the healing qualities of music. When I get emails and people repeat a line and tell me what it meant to them, that’s pretty thrilling.
“To me, music is saying something that makes sense. It’s a double whammy. You can lift them up while saying what is important,” says Brooks. “I write songs for one purpose. To touch people with songs. To make them think, to make them look inside themselves.”
Brooks live in Llano with his wife, Debbie, who is also his performing partner.
“We’re on the road quite a bit. We make quite a bit of racket onstage for two people. I get the stomp board going, and she does the shakers. We can make quite a holy racket,” he said.
Through the years, Brooks has recorded nine albums, and has played all over the world, including Texas hot spots such as Stubb’s, Gruene Hall, Hill’s Café, Poodie’s Hilltop Café, and Threadgills.
He and his band have played with legends like Ray Price, Hal Ketchum, and Freddy King. Through it all, Brooks has battled his personal demons and channeled them into song.
In 2008, Brooks released his biography, Miracles for Breakfast: How Faith Helped Me Kick My Addiction. In the book, he writes of his addiction to drugs and alcohol, and his subsequent incarceration, the result of a gas station robbery and other break-ins.
He walked away from that with a new perspective on life, and spent time in the 1990’s playing for prison inmates around Canada. His music is filled with his personal philosophy. “Give it or go home! I sing a simple moral to a problem we all have.”
Brooks performs from 6-9 p.m. August 25 at LHUMC’s Multi-Purpose Worship Center at 101 Church Street in Liberty Hill.
Tickets are available at The Liberty Hill Independent office, as well as The Liberty Hill Marketplace, and at the door. Like The Independent on Facebook for your chance to win free tickets.