Article By Unknown?
In the February, 1977 issue of Action Magazine, there appeared an article with this lead paragraph: Ace in the Hole can't be classified as a college band. The members of this solid little country group admit that Southwest Texas University in San Marcos is more of a sideline than their music business.
Today, as it was then, music is still first with George Strait's Ace in the Hole Band, and college is a thing of the past for all but Strait and steel guitar player Mike Daily. And graduation is almost upon these two.
The popularity of Ace in the hole was made manifest last month as the band celebrated its third anniversary of existence at the honky-tonk where the band got its start. Kent Finlay's Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos. "I think Ace in the Hole is one hell of a band" Finlay said while watching a ant-like stream of students pour into Cheatham Street. "George has all the tools to become a successful recording artist, and all the members of his band are serious about their music. These are the kind of people who eventually succeed in the music business".
In offering a 50 cent admission and a free keg of beer, Finlay insured his favorite band a good anniversary crowd. But the free beer was only icing on the cake, for Ace in the Hole draws Texans with its tight, solid brand of country honky-tonk stomp. Coeds at SWTSU were carrying "Ace in the Hole Anniversary" placards on campus that day of the party and others were displaying gas-filled balloons which floated in the night sky above Cheatham Street Warehouse. Like Finlay, the students and fans of the town were showing their appreciation to a band of hard working musicians.
Strait's name fits the man, for there isn't a straighter looking and shooting young musician in the business. Nor a more dedicated one. And he was letting the hammer down at the anniversary party, playing first on country song and then another as Ace in the Hole believers filled Finlay's dusty and ill-lighted dance floor wall to wall." Everyone is out of school except me and Mike Daily" Strait said. "I'll get out next semester, and I believe Mike will graduate after this semester. And then its music all the way."
That the band has stayed intact to a member is stark evidence that Ace in the Hole means business. And there is no indication that steel player Mike Daily, drummer Tommy Foote, bass player Terry Hale or lead guitarist Ron Cable will do anything other than ride the road with Pearsall native George Strait in the months and years to come. "We will go into the studio to do a album" Strait said. "We cut a single last year that got a little air play here and there. And this kinda surprised me. We are inexperienced, but I believe that more work and more time in the studio will pay off for us in the long run. We are paying our dues, and we will continue paying them until something breaks. I've got some original songs that will go on the album, and we also intend to record some of Darrell Staedtler's stuff. Something might come of it. We are going to record at the Sound Masters Studio in Houston. That's where Frenchy Burke and Kenny Dale record. It's a good studio"