Texas - More Than A State Without Income Tax & Loose Gun Laws…

Stop 7 – Austin, Texas - “Blind Busking” Live Stream Music Tour

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Links / Notable Places:

Overview:

“Everything is Bigger in Texas” and the second you cross over the border it feels that way. The open space, giant pick-up trucks, and roads that stretch as far as your vision allows them to. Anthony and I were on a quest to find out just how much bigger things in Texas were.  Our time in Texas started with Austin for a few nights, then west to Marfa just before jetting North into the Rocky Mountains.

Texas.

A little over 8 hours of driving from New Orleans and we pulled in to Austin around 10 pm. We were greeted by a warm smile from my friend Raychal and some snorts from her crazy French Bulldog, Pippa. The last time I saw Raychal was in the summer of 2017 when she flew out to San Francisco to help me drive my things back to New York. We drove across America and the memories we made and places we visited still bring a smile to my face when I think back on them.

It was early to rise the next morning as we were greeted by the smiling eyes of little one-year-old Juaquin.  We spent the day together enjoying the Texas sunshine from the backyard, singing some tunes, tasting different vegan dishes, learning about sustainability and conservation for homesteading. We even got to have a mini photoshoot to show off some of the new clothing collaborations Rachael and her husband Antonio have been making on their online shop, @ojodevenadoaustin.

Bedtime for the little one was approaching and so was our dinner reservation. We said our goodbyes and headed downtown. A good friend of Anthony’s set us up with a reservation at EddieV’s famous steakhouse and had $300 waiting for us in gift card when we arrived!! It was an incredible “Welcome to Texas” to say the least!!

The next morning, we headed to Rock of Ages. This would be Anthony’s first tattoo ever and he didn’t go small. Selecting his left-back shoulder he sat for 2.5 hours as @katjaramirez detailed a custom wave in tribute to Anthony’s late brother Oliver.

Close your eyes and picture the ocean covered in light, sun from the heavens pouring on your face and you no longer feel alone for the presence of those you lost is there. That is kind of what his tattoo looks like a perfect picture from the mind of Anthony Ferraro.

Fresh from the tattoo we grabbed our scooters + all the music gear and headed to the pedestrian bridge overlooking downtown Austin. We were determined to do the live stream here and not even gravel in our scooter wheels would hold us from this goal. 43 minutes and a successful Livestream later we headed back to our Airbnb to clean up before dinner and ANOTHER live stream from Anthony’s cousin’s backyard.

Two very special and motivational guests attended the backyard live stream.  Stella and Grace both suffering from life long, threatening, and shortening chronic diseases, Friedreich's Ataxia & T1 Diabetes, would be in attendance for the backyard live stream. Due to the severity of their health issues the girls and their parents hadn’t left the house since March 2020. It was now November 17th and they were in the backyard. Anthony played for over an hour and we all enjoyed our socially distant bubbles and used the dance space as best we could.

The night ended with good old fashion, quite literally from a gas station BBQ, a MUST when in Texas! I loved getting to chat with Anthony’s younger cousins Cali and Sierra about baking and traveling. I had heard so much about his “cousins in Austin” and to finally get a chance to know them all was the icing on top of any cake you could find. A gas-powered campfire and smores sent us back to our Airbnb with full bellies and hearts.

We began packing up our things the next morning and planned out a stop for breakfast tacos. We were too close to the Stevie Ray Vaughn statue to not swing by for a minute. Stevie is one of Anthony’s greatest inspirations for blues guitar and he died unexpectedly in a helicopter crash on August 27, 1990, at the age of 35. This statue was the closest to meeting Stevie Anthony would be able to come. Whipping out his guitar and none of our recording gear for the tour, Anthony broke into a spontaneous live stream directly in front of the statue.

Seeing Anthony standing in front of the Stevie Ray Vaughn statue playing his heart out in ultimate tribute is an image I will likely never forget. In the shadow of his hero on a similar quest to “make it” as a blues musician. We laid some of Oliver’s ashes in the river behind the statue to solidify the moment in our hearts forever. We ran back to the car that was illegally double-parked--and surprisingly ticket free--and started our drive into West Texas.

Epic Pics:

Highlights:

  • All kinds of tacos

  • Randy’s BBQ – Literally in a GAS STATION!!!

  • Backyard concert for some inspirational attendees

  • Seeing my best friend from college + her husband and child

  • Meeting some of Anthony’s family members for the first time

Lowlights:

  • Not enough time spent with friends

  • Not enough time in the city to eat more places!!

  • COIVD making cities a hard place to enjoyably navigate

Podcast:

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Next Stop:

Marfa, Texas