Great Southern Honky Tonks

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
Great Southern Honky Tonks

Welcome to Honky Tonk Central! This is the main site for my book project, "Cold Beer, Live Music: Great Southern Honky Tonks" -- the first travel guide to Southern honky tonks!


Check out my blog at for details on my latest honky tonk visits and watch here for details about progress on the book.



Deepstep Rocks the Country Club

E-mail Print PDF

It's taken me more than two years since I first heard of this place, but I’m finally here at the Country Club in Augusta, GA. Even with the address in hand and a Google map printout, I almost missed the place, tucked in an old shopping center behind a Hooter’s on Washington Road. The signs are faded, so it doesn’t show up well while the sun’s setting on a Saturday evening.

The policewoman at the door checks my ID (a move always appreciated, although at my age, I doubt they think I’m under-age). I pay my $5 cover charge – accompanied by a chorus of “honey” and “darlin’” and an apology that I have to pay extra because there’s a live band tonight – and walk inside. It’s a typical cowboy-themed honky tonk: wooden walls, a wooden fence around the polished dance floor, three bars and the typical Western motif touches on the walls.

It’s 8:15 and weekend dance lessons are still in progress. Less than 20 folks are on the floor – mostly women, mostly 40s to 60s, but all trying to learn the steps through all the repetitions. I hunt for my first beer of the evening. The bartender says it’s $3 for a Miller Lite (luv that!), but cash only because she doesn’t have change or a credit card yet. So I take my first frosty bottle of the night and take a position along the rail next to the dance floor, close to the where the band is tuning their instruments. After the lesson ends, the Electric Slide brings out the jail bait.

Last Updated on Monday, 09 August 2010 00:36

Honky Tonkin' with Bobby Lee

 "I love a good loud honky tonk that rocks on Friday night..."--Eric Church

Don't we all? Otherwise, you probably wouldn't be looking at this site, right? There's nothing like your favorite local dive -- where everyone knows your name -- or having your friends take you to a new spot when you're in town visiting them. But what if you're on your own some weekend night, on the road in a strange city without the benefit of a local guide -- someone to point you towards a cold beer and a hot band?

Well, I'm on a mission to catalog ALL the honky tonks that are still rocking the South. I'm looking for anything from the Virginias south, and Texas/Arkansas east. The standards are pretty low (of course): a liquor license, live music and some sort of dance floor. My list is growing, but I'm always looking for more spots that feature country music and/or Southern rock. We're all familiar with the well-known tourist spots like Tootsies and Florabama. But I want to find the little hole-in-the-wall spots that only the locals know about out in the sticks, or hidden in that strip shopping center across the tracks on the bad side of town.

So, if you're got a great spot you want to share with fellow honky tonkers, drop me a line at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  with details about where your favorite treasures are hidden.

Thanks, and see you out there some night soon!