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in honky-tonking

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"Joe six-pack has no idea who we are. He's listening to Top 40 radio, and that's all he knows." But Dale Watson hasn't let that little setback bother him. Roaming the world from his homebase in Austin, Watson leads what just may be the world's best honky-tonk band. This year Watson and his band the Lonestars won Austin's Best Country Band award for the third time. Despite the acclaim over his '95 debut Cheatin' Heart Attack and follow-up albums that made him a star in Europe with several number one hits, Watson has remained a cult figure here. But Martin Sheen and director Zalman King may help him elevate his status. Sheen is set to costar with Watson in a movie directed by King, in which Watson plays a country singer who sells his soul to the devil. It may not get his music on the radio, but dealing with the devil is good for your career. Just ask Robert Johnson.

Dale Watson plays The Pour House Friday, April 8 at 10 p.m. Tickets are $10. Straight 8s open.

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