If you've ever drowned your sorrows in suds on a Sunday night at the Yucca Tap Room, you know that DJ Dana gives you the perfect soundtrack for whatever heartbreak ails you, spinning classic country discs from her vast collection of wax as well as hosting a local country act to fire up the live twang every other Sunday night. After nearly three years of hosting Valley Fever in the venerable Tempe watering hole (Disclosure: I perform there regularly), DJ Dana has put together the Woodstock of the Valley alt-country scene, an all-day show featuring 13 Valley-based bands and two DJs playing "real" (no pop country welcome!) country music. "In this show alone, we have honky-tonk, outlaw country, bluegrass, rockabilly, hillbilly blues, southern rock, desert rock, and truck-drivin' country," DJ Dana says. "I call it Arizona country." While there has been an original country scene in the Valley for nearly a decade, DJ Dana says the scene is more cohesive now than before. "There seems to be more support and camaraderie among everyone, and it's a lot of fun. We've got more talent here in Phoenix than in 99 percent of what you hear on country-pop radio. And 100 percent more heart." So while the yearly Country Thunder behemoth gets ready to go off in Florence next month, charging pop country fans an arm and a leg for a ticket, folks wanting to hear a dose of real Arizona twang at a good price (free) should pop in to the Yucca on Sunday. "Nothing beats live country music in an old-time Arizona barroom," DJ Dana says.
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