In the year 2000, musicians in Tampa, Florida gave Mike Bell his moniker, Texas Mike Bell, because of his thick Texas accent. Born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1953, Mike worked the Tampa Bay area blues-club scene off and on from 1988 until 2007. The self-proclaimed 'troubadour' has also enjoyed living in and playing his guitar in the cities of Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, Memphis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Nashville; racking up approximately 3500 gigs.
His second of three CD's, "For the Love of Buddy" (circa 2003), garnered some modest critical acclaim, and landed him some press in several music magazines in the UK, including a complimentary article in "Now Dig This", one of UK's premiere rock-and-roll monthly magazines. One of his favorite musicians, Tommy Allsup, coproduced the CD with Bell, and also played some great guitar-solos on it.
Texas Mike Bell can be counted on to include plenty of Buddy Holly's music at his shows, along with his offerings of Mark Knopfler, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Eric Clapton, Santana, and a few other of his favorite guitarists. His guitar of choice is a Fender Stratocaster plugged into a Fender tube amplifier.
You should read all about this great musician and a true friend of mine !
This is the Texas Mike Bell CD from 2009:
I like it very much, as the songs sound great and there is so much
feeling in it and a lot of bass for the loudspeakers in my car.
Hier lest Ihr alles über Mike, der mit 16 als Profi begann. Inzwischen hat er
mehr als 3000 Auftritte in 40 Jahren hinter sich, die Stunden Arbeit mit der
Gitarre überschreiten mittlerweile die 100000 .
Mehr über einen top Musiker und einen sehr sehr guten Freund auf dieser Seite.
TMB, July, 2009; with his main axe.
Man at work.
Von Texas Mike Bell wußte ich überhaupt nichts, bis ich im Holly International Fanzine die Info las, dass er zusammen mit Tommy Allsup, dem legendären Lead Gitarristen der Crickets auf Buddy Holly's letzter Tour, eine Buddy Holly Tribute CD produziert hatte.
Mike hat sich in meinGästebuch eingetragen. Ich trat mit ihm in Verbindung, um weitere Informationen zu bekommen. Es hat sich gelohnt. Mike ist sehr freundlich und kommunikativ und hat mir seltenes Originalmaterial überlassen, für das ich ihm sehr danke. Inzwischen pflegen wir regen Kontakt, es gibt Themen genug in der Welt der Musik.
TMB in the studio.
I didn't know anything about Texas Mike Bell in former times.
Mike and legendary Tommy Allsup in the studio.
One day I read in the HOLLY International fanzine that he recorded a
Buddy Holly Tribute CD together with Tommy Allsup, the great lead
guitarist of the Crickets on Buddy's last tour before his death in 1959.
Mike signed my guestbook. I contacted him to get some more
information. That's, how it began.
THANK YOU MIKE for your fine contribution to my Buddy Holly site !
Mike Bell (15) mit Gitarre.
Texas Mike Bell
FOR THE LOVE
This is his second CD.
The first one was released in 1999."NEW STRINGS".
Dies ist seine zweite CD. Die erste, "New Strings",
wurde 1999 veröffentlicht.
Eine Rarität aus meiner Sammlung mit Original - Autogrammen von Tommy Allsup, Texas Mike Bell und Austin Allsup, Tommy's Sohn.
Noch versiegelt, eines von 100 Exemplaren weltweit.
All photos and informations on this TMB page:
Licensed with written permission by Texas Mike Bell
BLUE AVENUE RECORDS 2005 - 2016
Great " bluesy " music, great voice, quite different to Buddy's.
Tolle "bluesige" Musik, ganz tolle Stimme, erinnert mich ein wenig an Chris Rea,
absolut anders als die von Buddy. Mike sagte mir, er habe nie versucht, wie
Buddy zu klingen.
After Mike had listened to Buddy songs he had never heard before,
some of the less nown ones, he decided to make a tribute album,
the partner he chose was the best one, a perfect choice !
Mike hat sich den besten Partner für seine Tribute-CD ausgesucht, den es für solch ein ehrgeiziges Projekt gibt:
Buddy's Lead-Gitarristen TOMMY ALLSUP, ein begnadeter Künstler. Grammy - Preisträger. Eine perfekte Wahl !
Die Zusammenarbeit zwischen Mike Bell und Tommy Allsup ist ein großer Moment in der Geschichte der Buddy Holly Tributes. Das klingt alles absolut anders als so viele andere Tribute Songs.
Eine andere Stimmlage, eigentlich oft 2, wenn er im Duett mit sich selbst singt, eine ganz andere Athmosphäre, eine Menge bassbetonter Klänge, die aus den Lautsprechern kommen, dazu ein langes Gespräch zwischen Mike und Tommy zwischen den Songs. Großartige Musik, ich mag sie sehr !
This is an original photo that Mike sent to me showing him together
with Tommy Allsup in the kitchen area of the studioin Azle, TX.
Ein Originalfoto, das ich eingescannt habe.
Es zeigt Texas Mike Bell mit Tommy Allsup im Küchenbereich des damaligen Studios von Tommy Allsup in Azle/Texas.
The cooperation between Mike Bell and Tommy Allsup is a great
moment in the history of Buddy Holly tributes. It sounds
absolutely different listening to so many other tributes.
Another voice, (often 2 voices, to be true, singing duet with himself), another atmosphere, a lot of bass sounds coming out of the loudspeakers and a long talk by Mike and Tommy in-between the songs. Great music worth to listen to, I like it so much !
Mike Bell told me about this really cool site.I don't know how many gigs Mike played with me off and on from 1978 until 1996, but we did a whole bunch of them.
I always enjoyed Buddy Holly tunes that we did. I remember that I always sang "Raining in my heart" & "That'll be the day", and Mike always did "Maybe Baby" and "Peggy Sue".
I will never forget one night after I finished singing "Raining in my Heart", I said on the mic, "Now here is Mike with another Buddy Holly song for you".
Then someone in the audience yelled out "I don't like Buddy Holly"!, and Mike said back to him over the PA, " That's a shame, because Buddy Holly would have liked you, because he liked everybody!", then we went into "Maybe Baby".
I remember being nervous after that loud mouth said he didn't like Buddy Holly, because I wasn't sure how Mike was going to react. Thank God he handled it the way he did. Knowing Mike anything could have happened.
I have always been a Buddy Holly fan. I had a school girl's crush on Buddy, and I was sweet 16 when Buddy died. I was devestated."
Mike ist ein echter Buddy Holly Fan.
1992 besuchte er die Absturzstelle von 1959 mit dem kleinen Monument, das zu Ehren der 3 Stars dort von einem Fan aufgestellt wurde.
As a real Buddyholic Mike visited the tiny crash site monument
honoring the 3 stars on the former Albert Juhl farm near Mason City.
This happened in 1992.
Mike auf der
Die Bühne, auf der für Buddy, Ritchie und den Big Bopper der letzte Vorhang fiel.
Mike with Buddy Holly glasses on stage of the legendary SURF BALLROOM,
CLEAR LAKE, IA. The stage, where the last curtain fell for Buddy, Ritchie
Texas Mike Bellis a seasoned guitar virtuoso of blues and ‘50s-through-‘70s-style rock and roll, and he's been passionately performing these genres of music since 1969 with more than 3000 venues to his credit.
If you like the guitar styles of Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Johnny Winter, Mark Knopfler, Santana, Freddie King, Jimmy Page, Ritchie Blackmore, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, BB King, Roy Buchanan, and Jimmy Hendrix all rolled into one, then Texas Mike Bell and his band will provide you with the sounds and energy that make any event one to enjoy and remember.
Bell is currently enjoying the success of his latest CD, "For the Love of Buddy," which is an assemblage of some of Buddy Holly's more obscure songs, as well as others that were recorded in the late ‘50s by Holly in his New York apartment on a two-track Ampex recorder.
What makes this CD very special (aside from Bell's excellent guitar skills and vocal offerings) is Tommy Allsup's major input both as an engineer and contributing guitarist.
Tommy was Buddy Holly's lead guitarist both on tours and in the studio on a number of recordings from March, 1958 right up to the tragic accident on Feb 3, 1959; when his life was spared when he lost a coin toss with Ritchie Valens for a seat on the ill-fated small plane which crashed after take off, claiming the lives of Buddy Holly, Valens, the Big Bopper (J P Richardson), and the young pilot, Roger Peterson.
"Mike's musical talent and interpretations of Buddy's music is something to be proud of," says Allsup.
"Over 45 years has passed since Buddy recorded many of these songs, and some we never had the chance to record until now.
Thanks Mike for your part in keeping the music alive."
Bell's first album, "New Strings" , which features renowned vocalist,
Hoyt Fox, is one of the best blues albums I've heard.
TMB mit seiner ersten Gibson Les Paul Gitarre 1973 in Fort Worth in Texas beim Vortrag von
TMB and his first Gibson Les Paul Guitar playing "Stormy Monday" in Fort Wort, TX 1973.
In the studio.
Tommy Allsup snapshot taken by Mike Bell in Tommy's Studio in Azle TX during the FTLOB recording sessions.
Hier hat Texas Mike Bell eine Aufnahme von Tommy Allsup während der Aufnahmen zu FTLOB in dessen Studio in Azle in Texas gemacht.
Texas Mike Bell
in Sonny West's music room in his home in Abilene TX. 1995.
in seinem Musikzimmer in Abilene, Texas.
Fotografiert von Texas Mike Bell.
Mike with Felicia Butler and sister Althia Smith at the end of "New Strings" sessions in Wichita Falls, TX 1999