armadillo world Headquarters


Armadillo World Headquarters Interior

Over the summer of 1970, a loose collective of hippies, free spirits, and dreamers refashioned the old National Guard armory building at the corner of South First Street and Barton Springs, just across the Colorado River from downtown Austin, into a concert hall and beer garden.

Armadillo World HeadQuarters Beer Garden

The Armadillo World Headquarters was all about music, a shared tolerance for marijuana, psychedelic drugs, and cold beer, and like its namesake had a hard-shell interior with a docile disposition. During its first two years of operation, the Armadillo brought in a parade of touring talent who otherwise would have bypassed Texas, including Ry Cooder, Captain Beefheart, Taj Mahal, Dr. John the Night Tripper, Frank Zappa, the Flying Burrito Brothers, the New Riders of the Purple Sage, Bill Monroe, and especially Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen.

Armadillo World HeadQuarters

But it wasn’t until the night of Aug. 12, 1972, when Willie Nelson walked onto the stage of the Armadillo that everything changed. That performance in front of a mixed crowd of hippies and rednecks is recognized as the starting point of the modern Austin music scene.

By Joe Nick Patoski


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  • This site will be a collection of sights, sounds and glowing prose about all things music, art and history.

    This is the archive of a place important in shaping Austin’s future. The lst note was played on New Years Eve 1980 but its influence lives on.

     

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  • 083-AWHQ-Poster-Slideshow-website-2015-084
    There will be a collection of poster images providing a rich history lesson letting the artists shape the history through their imagery.

    Look forward to profiles of the artists and staff. We may be able to have the artists describe their inspiration and technique for a particular poster.

  • It was the staff and the crowds that kept performers coming back time and time again. There are many back stories that can now be told as the statute of limitation has run out and the kids are old enough to hear them.

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GROWING LIST OF AWHQ PERFORMERS

.38 Special — 2nd Generation — 47 Times Its Own Weight — 7th Wave — Abelard String Quartet — AC/DC — Accordian Kid — Ain’t Misbehavin’ — Airto Moreira — Al “TNT” Bragg’s Revue — Al Kooper — Al Stewart — Alan Price — Albert Collins — Alda Reserve — Alex Coke — Alex Harvey — Alex Moore — Alice Cooper — All You Can Eat — Allen Wayne Damron — Alpha Band — Alphonse Mouzon — Alvin Crow — Alvin Lee — Amazing Rhythm Aces & The Highsteppers — Ambrosia — American Standard Band — Andy Pratt — Angel Sucheras Group — Angela Strehli — Antelope — Antony Braxton — April Wine — Argent — Arlo Guthrie — Arrogance — Art Ensemble of Chicago — Artful Dodger — Asleep at the Wheel — Asmus Delby & Gay — Atlanta Rhythm Section — Augie Meyers — Aurora — Austin Ballet Theater — Austin Blues Ensemble — Austin Friends of Traditional Music — Average White Band — Ayers Rock — Aztec Two Step — B. W. Stevenson — B.B. King — B-52s — Baba Ram Dass — Baby — Baby Face — Backbone — Balcones Fault — Barry Melton — Basilisk — Becca Sarow — Bee Bop Deluxe — Bee’s Knees — Bellamy Brothers — Bert Jansch — Berzerko Brothers — Beto Y Los Fairlanes — Bette Midler — Big Boys — Big Joe Turner — Big Twist — Bill and Bonnie Hearne — Bill Bruford — Bill Connors — Bill Evans — Bill Kirchen — Bill Monroe — Bill Neely — Bill Withers — Bill Wray — Billy C. Farlow — Billy Cobham — Billy Joe Shaver — Billy Swan — Black Horse — Black Oak Arkansas — Blackfoot — Blind George — Blind George McLain — Blind Melon — Blitz Brothers — Blondie — Blood Sweat and Tears — Bloodrock — Blue Oyster Cult — Bob Jenkins — Bob Seger — Bob Weir — Bob Welch — Bobby Bridger — Bobby Doyle — Bobby Thomas & the Light Men — Bola Hooker — Bonnie Murray — Bonnie Raitt — Boo Ray & the Bivalves — Boomtown Rats — Boz Scaggs — Brand X — Brave Combo — Brecker Brothers — Breeze — Brewer & Shipley — Brian Auger’s Oblivion Express — Brian Jackson & the Midnight Band — Brides of Funkenstein — Brock Walsh — Brodie Mountain Boys — Bronco Brothers — Brownsville Station — Bruce Cockburn — Bruce Springsteen — Bryan Bowers — Bubble Puppy — Buck Acre — Buckdancer’s Choice — Budgie — Buffy St. Marie — Bugs Henderson — Bump and Grind — Buster Brown Band — Butch Hancock — Buzz Bone — Byron Berline — Cactus Pryor — Calico — Calvert Powell & Resnick — Captain Beefheart — Captain Beyond — Carla Bley — Carlene Carter — Carnaval Brasileiro ’79 — Carry Beezer — Cassel Webb’s Bumpin’ Co. — Cate Bros — Catfish Hodge — Cats at Work — Cedar Frost — Chango — Charles Mingus — Charlie Daniels Band — Charlie Day — Charlie Sexton — Chastity Fox — Cheech & Chong — Cheezmo Shmaltz — Chip Taylor — Chris Blackwell — Chris DeBurgh — Chris Hillman — Chuck & Julie — Chuck Mangione — Chuck Pyle — Chuck Wagon and the Wheels — Clifton Chenier — Cold Blood — Cold Nose Five — Colleen Peterson — Commander Cody & The Lost Planet Airmen — Contenders — Cooder Brown — Cool Breeze — Copas Brothers — Corky Laing — Cornell Hurd — Corpo Santo — Couchois — Count Basie — Country — Country Gazette — Country Gentlemen — Country Joe and the Fish — Country Joe McDonald — Crab — Crabby Appleton — Craig Calvert — Creation — Cross Country — Crystal Image — Cunningham Corner — D. Binker — D. K. Little’s Power Play — D.B. Cooper — Daddy Longlegs — Daisy Dillman Band — Dan Del Santo — Dan Ely — Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks — Dana Cooper — Daredevils — Daril Leonard — Dark Horse — Darrel Rhoades & The HaHaVishnu Orchestra — Dash Morgan — Dave Brubeck Quartet — Dave Edmunds & Rockpile — Dave Mason — Dave Van Ronk — David “Fathead” Newman — David Allen Coe — David Bromberg — David Grisman — David LaFlamme — David Newman — D-Day — Dee McCandless — Dee Moeller — Delaney Bramlett — Delbert & Glenn — Delbert McClinton — Demian — Denim — Deodato — Derringer — Desires — Desmond Child & Rouge — Devo — Dexter Gordon — Diamond Rio — Dickie Betts — Dillaplane — Dingoes — Dire Straits — Dixie Diesel — Dixie Dregs — Doak Snead — Doc & Merle Watson — Doc Jones Band — Doc Watson — Doctor Feelgood — Doctor John — Dogs at Play — Dolenz Jones Boyce & Hart — Don McLean — Don Sanders — Donna Fargo — Doug Dyer — Doug Kershaw — Doug Sahm — Dr. Feelgood — Dr. Hook & Medicine Show — Dragon — Duncan Browne — Dusty Drape & Dusters — Duval Step — Dwight Twilley — E.O. Doggett — Eaglebone Whistle — Earl Scruggs — Eastwood Revue — Easy Money — Eber — Eddie & Martha Atcock — Eddie Harris — Eddie Money — Edgar Winter — Egberto Gismonti — El Molino — El Rancho — El Roacho — Electromagnets — Elizabeth Barraclough — Elliot Leonard — Elvin Bishop — Elvis Costello — Emmylou Harris — Eric Clapton — Eric Johnson — Eric Quincy Tate — Ernie Gammage — Ester Satterfield — Etta James — Eureka — Evergreen — Exile — Explosives — Extreme Heat — Ezra Charles — Fancy Space — Fanny — Fast Sam — Fat ‘n’ Sassy — Fats Domino — Feet First — Felix Pappalardi — Fever Tree — Firefall — First Nat’l Rotagilla Band — Flaco Jimenez — Flamin’ Groovies — Flash Cadillac & The Continental Kids — Flora Purim — Flying Burrito Brothers — Foghat — Fools — Foreplay — Frampton’s Camel — Frank Zappa — Frank Zappa & The Mothers — Franklin Ajaye — Fred Argir — Fred Walser — Freda & the Firedogs — Freddie Hubbard — Freddie King — Freddy Fender — — Free At Last — Free Beer — Free Nugs & the Kickbaxxx — Freedom Express — Frenzi — Full House — Funkadelic — Funky Kings — Gabrieli Brass Quintet — Gallagher & Lyle — Gamma — Gap Mangione — Garfield — Gary Burton — Gary P. Nunn — Gary Wright — Gasolin’ — Gatemouth Brown — Gato Barbieri — Geezinslaws — Genesis — Gentle Giant — George Duke & Billy Cobham — George Thorogood & The Destroyers — Gil Gilberto — Gil Scott-Heron — Ginger Valley — Gino Vanelli — Golden Earring — Goose Creek Symphony — Gospel Silvertones — Gospel Stars — Gove — Graham Parker & the Rumor — Gram Parsons — Great Guitars — Green Slime Boys — Greezy Wheels — Grinderswitch — Gypsee Eyes — Haciendo Punto — Haji — Hall and Oats — Hamm Brothers — Hampton Geese Band — Hand to Mouth — Happy Traun — Harnett Brothers — Harry Anderson — Harry Chapin — Harvey Mandel — Harvey Raspberry — Head East — Heartsfield — Heath Brothers — Heaven & Earth — Helpinstill — Henry Gross — Herbie Hancock — Heyoka — Hickory Wind — High Cotton — High Country — High Voltage — Holy Modal Rounders — Homegrown — Hometown Band — HooDoo Rhythm Devils — (Backing Pointer Sisters) — Hoot Night — Horslips — Hot Cakes — Hot Sauce — Hot Tuna — Hoyt Axton — Hub City Movers — Hugh Regan — Hurricane Carter — Hydra — If — Iggy Pop — Image — Incredible String Band — Iron Butterfly — It’s A Beautiful Day — J. Geils Band — J.D. Souther — Jack & Fletcher — Jack De Johnette — Jackie King — James Brown — James Cotton Band — James Tally — Jan Garbarek — Jan Hammer — Jay Boy Adams — Jay Ferguson — Jazzmanian Devils — Jean-Luc Ponty — Jeff Beck — Jeff Berlin — Jeff Lorber Fusion — Jerrie Jo Jones — Jerry Barnett — Jerry Duwanville — Jerry Garcia & Merl Saunders — Jerry Garcia Band — Jerry Green — Jerry Jeff Walker — Jerry Lee Lewis — Jesse Colin Young — Jim Mings — Jim Ringer — Jimmie Dale Gilmore — Jimmie Vaughan — Jimmy Buffet — Jimmy Cliff — Jimmy Spheeris — Jimmy Witherspoon — JJ Cale — Jo Jo Gunne — Joan Armatrading — Joanne Mackell — Job — Joe Cocker — Joe Ely — Joe Jackson — John Abercrombie — John Anderson — John Cale — John Clay — John Cougar (nee Mellencamp) — John Dee Graham — John Fahey — John Garza & Blue Horizon — John Hammond — John Hartford — John Henry Faulk — John Klemmer — John Mayall — John Nitzinger — John Prine — John Reed — John Renbourn — John Sebastian — John Staehely — John Stuckey — John Vandiver — Johnny Dee & the Rocket 88’s — Johnny Gimble — Johnny Pierce — Johnny Rodriguez — Johnny Winter — Joker Moon — Jon Emery & The Missouri Valley Boys — Jose Feliciano — Journey — Joy of Cooking — Jubal Clark — Jubilation — Jug Band — Jules & the Polar Bears — Jus’ Walkin’ — Kansas — Karla Bonoff — Katy Moffett — Keith Adams — Keith Van Sickle — Kenneth Threadgill — Kenny & The Jets — Kenny & the Kasuals — Kenny Acosta Band — Kenny Doss — Kenny Loggins — Kenny Rankin — Kevin Collins — KGB — King Creole — Kinky Friedman — Kirk von Sickle — Kiwi — Krackerjack — Kraftwerk — Krishna Dass — Kuba — Kurt Van Sickle — L.A. Jets — La Primavera — Ladd Roberts — Lake — Larry Coryell — Larry Gatlin — Larry Groce — Larry McNeely — Larry Raspberry & The Highsteppers — Lasuza — Lavender Hill Express — Law — Lawrence Hammond — Le Roux — Lee Ann & The Bizarros — Lee McCullough Band — Legends of Jazz — Legion of Mary — Legs Diamond — Lenny White — Leo Kottke — Leon Redbone — Leon Russell — Leroy Jenkins — Leroy Preston & WDM — Les Blanc — Les Clamtones — Les Dudek — Levon Helm — Lightnin’ Hopkins — Lightning — Linda Hargrove — Linda Ronstadt — Lindsey Haisley — Link Davis — Link Wray — Little Feat — Little Imo — Long John Baldry — Los Guajalotes — Lost Gonzo Band — Lost Highway Band — Lou Ann Barton — Lou Ray — Loudon Wainwright III — Lowell Fulson & Etta James — Lowell George — Lower Forty Grass — Lucky Roach — Lynn Groom — Lynx — Lynyrd Skynyrd — M. Sokoloff Dancers — Magazine — Mahavishnu Orchestra — Mahogany Rush — Mama’s Pride — Mambo Combo — Man Band — Mance Lipscomb — Marc Benno — Marcia Ball — Maria Muldar — Marianne Faithfull — Mark Farner — Mark Hallman — Mark Jordan — Marshall Tucker Band — Martin Mull — Mary McCaslin — Mary Travers — Maynard Ferguson — McKendree Spring — Meatloaf — Meisburg & Walters — Mendocino All Stars — Michael (Martin) Murphey — Michael Diner — Michael Franks — Michael Katakis — Michael Marcoulier — Michael Murphey — Michael Nesmith — Michael Simmons & Slewfoot — Michael Urbakiak Fusion — Michael Woody — Midnight Angels — Mike Davis — Mike Greene Band — Milton Carroll — Mink deVille — Miroslav Vitous — Mission Mountain Wood Band — Missouri — Missouri Woodland — Molta — Monkees — Montrose — Moods of Country Music — Moon Martin — Moonlighters — Mose Allison — Mother of Pearl — Moxy — Mullet — Myles & Lenny — Nat Adderley — Navasota — Neil Larson — Nektar — Network — New Grass Revival — New Orleans R&B Allstars — New Riders of the Purple Sage — Next — Nick Lowe — Ninth Street Blues Band — Nitty Gritty Dirt Band — Noel Redding — Norman & Nancy Blake — Northfork Express — Norton Buffalo Stampede — Nova — NRBQ — Old & New Dreams — Old Salt — Oliver Lake — Omar & the Howlers — On 2nd Thought — One Hand Clapping — Outlaws — Overload — Ozark Mountain Daredevils — Panama Red — Papa John Creach — Paradise Special — Parliament/Funkadelic — Passenger — Pat Metheny — Patty Smith — Paul Butterfield — Paul Ray & The Cobras — Paul Winter Consort — Pavlov’s Dog — Penny Ney — Peter Lang — Peter Robinson — Peter Rowan — Phil Lesh — Phil Ochs — Phil Woods Quintet — Phyrework — Plum Nelly — Point — Pointer Sisters — Pot Liquor — Pousette-Dart Band — Pretenders — Pure Prairie League — Quicksilver Messenger Service — Quilapayun — Rabble — Rainshadow — Ralph Bostoe — Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys — Ralph Towner — Ram Dass — Ram Jam — Ramblin’ Jack Elliot — Ramon Ramon & the 4 Daddios — Ramsey Lewis — Randall Bramblett — Randy Crawford — Randy Hansen & Machine Gun — Randy Newman — Rat Creek — Rat Madness — Ravi Shankar — Ray Campi — Ray Charles — Ray Manzarek — Ray Wylie Hubbard — RCO All Stars — Records — Red Weaver Band — Red White & Bluegrass — Refugee — Renaissance — Rex Allen Jr — Richard Beirach — Richard Lasaya — Richard Torrence — Richie Furay — Rick Casual & the Kitchen Band — Rick Derringer — Rick Stein — Rickie Lecea — Rickie Lee Jones — Riley Osborn — Riot — Ritchie Havens — Riverstone — Roadmap — Roanoke — Rob Moorman & Saddle Tramp — Rob Sunderland — Robert Chowning — Robert Gordon — Robert Palmer — Robert Shaw — Robin Lane — Rockaway — Rockets — Rockin’ Devils — RockinHorse — Rockpile — Roger McGuinn — Roky Erickson — Ron Crick — Ronnie Laws — Rory Gallagher — Rounder — Rowan Brothers — Roxy Music — Roy Buchanan — Roy Harper — Roy Orbison — Ruben Ramos & the Mexican Revolution — Ruby Starr — Ruby w/ Tom Fogerty — Rufus — Rush — Rusty Weir — Ry Cooder — Sack Weed — Sailor — Salaman — Sam Rivers Quartet — Sammy Hagar — San Francisco Mime Troupe — Sanford-Townsend Band — Santana — Savoy Brown — Science Fiction Band — Seals & Crofts — Shake Russell & Dana Cooper — Shakin’ Street — Shandi — Shaun Cassidy — Shawn Phillips — Shawn Seigel — Shenandoah — Shiva’s Headband — Shoes — Shotgun — Side of the Road Gang — Siler Kessel & Holmes — Silver City Saddle Tramps — Silvertones — Sirius — Skeeter Tate Band — Skyhooks — Skyrocket — Skyscrapers — Slow Motion — Snaker & the Shakers — Sonny Fortune Quartet — Sonny Oard — Sonny Rollins — Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee — Sons of Cajun Crawdady — Sons of Champlin — Sonstar — Southern Feeling — Southside Johnny & the Ashbury Jukes — Space Opera — Spanky and Our Gang — Spatz — Spellbound — Spirit — Split Enz — Spyro Gyra — St. Elmo’s Fire — Stan Alexander — Standing Waves — Star Spangled Washboard Band — Starbuck — Starcrost — STB — Steam Heat — Steeleye Span — Steely Dan — Stephane Grappelli — Stephen Bruton — Steve Esteban Jorden — Steve Forbert — Steve Fromholz — Steve Goodman — Steve Grossman — Steve Long Band — Stevie Ray Vaughan — Still Walkin’ — Stillwater — Stoneground — Stoney Edwards — Storm — Strawbs — Summerfield — Sun Ra — Sun Ra & His Arkestra — Sunrise — Supernatural Family Band — Suze Raff & Woody Lawson — Sweet Tooth — T. Gosney Thornton — T. Tellonious Troll — Tailwind — Taj Mahal — Talking Heads — T-Bone Burnett — Ted Nugent — Terminal Mind — Terry Lee Hale — Texas — Texas Rose — Texiod — The Beat — The Cats — The Clash — The Committee — The Contendors — The Continental Kids — The Dead Boys — The Dicks — The Dictators — The Dillards — The Drifters of Victoria — The English Beat — The Explosives — The Fabulous Thunderbirds — The Flatlanders — The Fools — The Grey Ghost — The Jam — The Johnny Gimble Band — The Kinks — The Kinks — The Lost Austin Band — The Lost Planet Airmen — The Lotions — The Meters — The Meters — The Mighty Clouds of Joy — The Neville Brothers — The New Oso Band — The Persuasions — The Police — The Ramones — The Reactors — The Reynolds Sisters — The Roches — The Runaways — The Skunks — The Staple Singers — The States — The Tubes — The Wild Tchoupitoulas — Thin Lizzie — Thin Lizzy — Third World — Tiger Balm — Tim Buckley — Tim Curry — Tim Weisberg — Timothy Leary — Toby Beau — Todd Rundgren — Tom Browne — Tom Johnston — Tom Paxton — Tom Robinson Band — Tom Rush — Tom T. Hall — Tom Waits — Tommy Bolan — Tommy Tutone — Tompall Glaser — Tony Williams — Too High Band — Too Smooth — Toots & The Maytals — Toto — Tower of Power — Townes Van Zandt — Toys — Traction Masters — Tracy Nelson & Mother Earth — Traffic — Trapeze — Traveler — Triple Threat Review — Triple XXX — Triumvirate — Truck — Turkey Trots — UFO — Ultravox — Uncle Vinty — Uncle Walt’s Band — Uranium Savages — Utopia — Valdy & The Hometown Band — Van Halen — Van Morrison — Vassar Clements — Velvet Underground — Vince Bell — Vince Mariani Band — Vixen — Warren Zevon — Watson Beasley — Wave — Waylon Jennings — Wazmo Nariz — Weather Report — Wendy Waldman — Wesley Lunsford — Wet Willie — Wheatfield — Whiskey Drinkin’ Music — Whistler — White Lightning — Widow Maker — Wiggy Bits — Wilcox West — Wildfire — William D. Smith — Willie Nelson — Willis Alan Ramsey — Wommack Brothers — Woodband — Woodstock Census — Woody Shaw — XTC — Yusef Lateef — Yvonne Elliman — ZZ Top — and more.