When I was looking for people behind the scenes in local (and national) music to interview, one of the people at the top of my list was Buster O’Keefe, the owner of The Rail Club in Fort Worth. Buster is one of the very few venue owners who play a HUGE part, not only in day-to-day operations of the club, but also in the bands that grace his stage. The Rail Club has hosted bands such as Hank III, Down, Fear Factory, and Turbid North, along with many local metal legends and events such as War of Rock. Buster was gracious enough to answer my questions and give a little background on what drives him and The Rail, so here we go….
What first made you want to get involved in music?
I’ve always loved the music scene, back in the 80’s I supported a band called Sweet Savage with Joey C. Jones.
What was your first concert?
My first concert was Elvis Pressley back in the 70’s at the Fort Worth Convention center.
The best concert was Down at The Rail Club September 2011 for our first Anniversary.
Haven’t really seen a bad concert.
Who are some of your favorite mainstream bands?
Down, Hank III, Crowbar, Eyehategod
Who are some of your favorite local DFW bands?
Warbeast, Rigor Mortis, Turbid North, Love Stricken Demise, 100 Proof Hatred, Black Dutch Sioux to name a few, I can’t list them all, there’s so many I like that are awesome bands.
Do you have any musical talents? Instruments? Singing? Do you play the spoons?
Can’t sing, lol played a guitar a little years ago.
How long have you been active in the local music scene?
Back in the 80’s I supported a band and went to shows at Savvys and other places around the metroplex. I got back into it in 2010 when I opened The Rail Club.
What prompted you to get involved in local music?
There’s a lot of really good bands around the metroplex to see.
What prompted you to open a venue?
I’ve always liked the club business, back in the 80’s I had a couple of Topless bars. I use to go to the Ridglea Theatre and watch shows there and as I learned more about the bands that were playing and found out that a lot of them didn’t get paid for playing the way the Ridglea paid bands I decided to open a club and make sure the bands were paid for their performance. Most clubs would pay the bands after they brought 20 people and then it wasn’t that much, I came up with paying the bands $7.00 a head regardless of how many people came to see them play. This is how The Rail Club came about.
How many shows would you say you have seen?
Who was your favorite band you have had play the stage at the Rail?
Down & Hank III
Where do you see The Rail Club going in the next year? Five years?
Right now the business is really tough, hopefully the economy will pick up and everyone get’s back to work and can afford to go to weekly shows. We are working towards bringing the best Bands available to the club in the future for all of the fans.
What is one thing you wish would change about the local scene here in DFW?
I would like for everyone that comes to a show to support all of the bands playing on that particular night and not leave after their favorite band plays, all of the bands need everyone’s support and the Venue needs all of the fans support to stay in business.
What is one thing you hope NEVER changes?
I hope that all of the fans keep supporting the local scene and keep it alive around the metroplex.
Do you have any upcoming shows you want to, as we say at Sawed-Off Productions, WHORE out???
April 14, Brad Burgess B-Day, w/ Rigor Mortis, April 21, 2012 is Bruce Corbitt and Jeanna Jennings Metal Wedding at The Rail Club.
If you had a super power, what would it be?
If I had a super power I would want to heal people of any disease they had.
You can check out The Rail at the following links:
WEBSITE (with full concert calendar!)