Tailgate Poets' roots-rock style fuses elements of Americana, blues, country and jazz into a mix of originals and cover songs by artists such as Bonnie Raitt, Ry Cooder, Lucinda Williams, Randy Newman, Mose Allison and Tom Waits. Depending on the venue, Tailgate Poets performs as a duo of Andy Chiles and Sandy Hall-Chiles, as a trio often supplementing this lineup with founding member Martin McCall on drums, or additional Washington County musicians like Local Legend Charlie Kelm and others. Tailgate Poets engages audiences with musicianship, distinct rhythms, energetic performances and memorable songs.
Tailgate Poets formed in the Oak Cliff area of Dallas, Texas, in 2013. drummer McCall and guitarist/singer/songwriter Chiles have played together since 1989 with the early Deep Ellum band Hai Tex, and popular world beat ensemble Ooga Booga. Both bands performed regional venues and festivals including Club Dada, Poor David’s Pub, Denton Arts and Jazz, Houston International and Main Street Festivals drawing respectable followings and enjoying regional airplay.
In addition to veterans McCall and Chiles, Tailgate Poets features multi-talented Sandy Hall-Chiles on bass and vocals. Her natural rhythm and solid bass establishes the foundation of the band’s sound.
After retiring from the world of education, Chiles and Hall-Chiles relocated outside of Brenham, Texas, where Tailgate Poets has established a loyal following with regular bookings at venues in South Central Texas while continuing its Dallas connection.
Somewhere in Between, hai tex music, 2014
This is Where, hai tex music, 2016
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songwriter, guitar and vocals
Embracing a range of musical genre from experimental jazz to Americana to reggae to punk, Chiles has performed in North Texas bands including Impending Bloom, Watusi, Ooga Booga, Hai Tex, Underdogs, New Jetz, Breeze, High Time Octet and Home and local Brenham project, Rob Moorman & Co. Originally from Long Beach, CA (and its surf and rock vibe), Chiles moved to Houston as a teenager and quickly discovered the 13th Floor Elevators and Gulf Coast R&B. Joining bands while still in high school, his love of music lead him to Denton, TX, and the influences of University of North
Texas' renowned music department. An early pioneer in Dallas’ Deep Ellum alternative music culture, Chiles’ new project, Tailgate Poets, provides the platform for his songwriting and musical influences. Retired as head of North Lake College’s video technology program, Chiles now enjoys country living and engineering at Hai Tex Studio.
Winner of the Dallas Carmine Appice Drum Contest, Buddy Magazine named him one of its revered Texas Tornadoes. If it can be beaten, shaken or forced to make noise, McCall has mastered it. He has played with an array of bands and artists including Impending Bloom, Selkie Girls, Ooga Booga, Hai Tex, Hands, Karen Bella, Aurora (and Larry Coryell), Flash to Bangtime, Rhett Butler and Jerry LaCroix. Living just outside the Dallas Metroplex, McCall originally hails from Lamar, MO. He's a highly sought-after session musician and drum instructor in the Dallas area.
bass and vocals
The only native Texan of the bunch, Hall-Chiles was born in Dallas but spent her early years in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, where she became entranced by Caribbean rhythms. Now retired, she spent her working career advising high school publications. A musical newcomer compared to her band mates, in 2013 she was coerced into playing bass—a Christmas present from her husband. After a year of practice, she joined Tailgate Poets. Her distinctive vocal timbre and harmonies lend an earthy quality. Tight and groove-driven in style of New Orleans funk, her bass lines move the band’s original and cover tunes. Most recently she’s been collaborating with her husband on tunes for the band’s third album project.