Concerts in Texas top the list of live music during the Fourth of July weekend, although country artists will be taking their tour buses to shows throughout the nation.
Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson will start their party in New Mexico before heading to Fort Worth for the continuation of Nelson's Fourth of July Picnic, a tradition he started in the '70s. Lacy J. Dalton will meet Haggard and Nelson for a Saturday (July 3) performance at the UFO Festival in Roswell, N.M. It marks Haggard's second year at the festival.
In addition to Haggard and Nelson, the Sunday (July 4) picnic at the Fort Worth Stockyards will feature Ray Price, Leon Russell, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, Billy Joe Shaver, David Allan Coe, Asleep at the Wheel, Ray Wylie Hubbard. Also appearing is Texas music mainstay Johnny Bush, who wrote "Whiskey River," the song Nelson always uses to open his concerts. The picnic will also include performances by several younger acts, including Cross Canadian Ragweed, Los Lonely Boys, Django Walker and Jack Ingram.
Ingram will be playing early in Fort Worth before hitting the road for Pat Green's Fourth of July show at Austin's Auditorium Shores. The show will also feature Jerry Jeff Walker, Cowboy Mouth and others. In Houston, the Judds will appear at the Freedom Over Texas 2004 celebration. It's their only public performance scheduled this year.
Other shows on July 4 include: Dierks Bentley and Terri Clark at Walker Air Field in Fort Monroe, Va. ... Tim McGraw and the Warren Brothers at Milwaukee's Marcus Amphitheater ... The Oak Ridge Boys, Sara Evans and Phil Vassar at Nashville's Riverfront Park ... Vince Gill and Amy Grant at the Capital Fourth celebration in Washington, D.C. ... Lyle Lovett at Battery Park in New York City ... Diamond Rio, Joe Nichols, Josh Turner and Patty Loveless at Metropolitan Park in Jacksonville, Fla. ... Blake Shelton and Chris LeDoux at the Rocky Mountain Stampede in Greeley, Colo. ... The Honky Tonk Tailgate Party (Chad Brock, Daryle Singletary, David Kersh and Rhett Akins) at Thief River Falls, Minn. ... Montgomery Gentry at Fort Knox, Ky.