When Austin Got Weird

If You Remember It, You Weren't There

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Although the slogan "Keep Austin Weird" was not trademarked until 2000, Austinites have been using it for years.

This exhibition explored the poster artists and music venues that defined Austin's counterculture in the 1960s and 70s. Selected from the archives of The Dolph Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin and the Austin History Center, 29 posters from artists Jim Franklin, Gilbert Shelton, Robert Burns, Micael Priest, and others traced Austin's transformation from the political capital of Texas to the music capital of the world.

Highlights from When Austin Got Weird included posters dating from 1967 to 1980 that feature favorites such as Janis Joplin, Willie Nelson, Pete Seeger, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Fats Domino and the Ramones, Asleep at the Wheel, Sir Doug and the Texas Tornadoes, and Shiva's Headband.

In addition to featuring posters, a series of podcasts were created, with interviews, narration, and music, to relate to the poster art in the exhibition. Musicians Ray Benson, Marcia Ball, Gary P. Nunn, and Jimmie Vaughan were among those recorded to give narrative context to the experience. Here are a few:

Cornell Hurd talks about Commander Cody and the Armadillo World Headquarters

Cornell Hurd talks about Doug Sahm

Gary P. Nunn talks about Michael Martin Murphey and his Cosmic Cowboy Symphony

Jimmie Vaughan talks about playing at the South Door

Marcia Ball talks about the Soap Creek Saloon

Ray Benson talks about Austin poster artists Micael Priest and Jim Franklin

Ruben Ramos talks about Tejano music and the Armadillo World Headquarters

Support for the Bullock Museum's exhibitions and education programs provided by the Texas State History Museum Foundation.