Luckenbach isn't just some fabled Texas town romanticized by classic country singers Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings. In fact it's hardly a town at all, but more a cul-de-sac at the end of a country road. Luckenbach is an attitude. It's a place to which Texas songwriters and music lovers from Nacogdoches to El Paso dream of traveling to pay homage to Texas music legends. Of course, if you blink while driving south on Ranch Road 1376 from Highway 290 W, you just might miss it. Aside from the general store, post office, rows of picnic tables, and ample parking for the many daily visitors, there's not much else here.
Though officially established in 1849 by German immigrants, it wasn't until 1970, when John Russell "Hondo" Crouch purchased the town—with a population of just three at the time—and created what soon became a legendary dance hall, that it became famous. The legend began when Texas singer-songwriter Jerry Jeff Walker recorded his album "Viva Terlingua!" at the dance hall in 1973. Four years later the town was memorialized by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings in the famed song "Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)."
During Crouch's reign as the self-proclaimed town mayor, he coined the famous phrase "Everybody's Somebody in Luckenbach," a motto still heard today.
Whether you're a fan of country music or not, you haven't officially been to Luckenbach without grabbing an ice-cold brew, listening to whoever may be strumming the guitar on stage, and picking up a souvenir bumper sticker for the road.
Luckenbach at a Glance
Elsewhere in The Hill Country
- Enchanted Rock State Natural Area
- Horseshoe Bay
- Johnson City