Cultural Index Thursday On A Friday – (It Works, Trust Us) The Midnight Rodeo Edition

Been on the road this week in Red River, New Mexico for the 4th of July – had a great time – but it’s also great to be back with everyone here in Raiderland.

Obviously we missed out on Thursday’s regular Cultural Index topic, but fret not, we will make it work tonight and carry it out over the weekend. We’ve got time and y’all are gonna enjoy weighing in on this one I think.

This week, we want to take you back to the days of the legendary Midnight Rodeo. Maybe for you it was Coldwater Country or perhaps your spot was Cowpokes. Whatever the era and wherever the place, today’s topic will resonate with you for sure.

This week we are looking for your top “Last Chance/Last Dance Song”.

These were the songs that when they played you knew you had one more chance to get out on the dance floor and make some magic happen. These kind of songs usually played well after midnight, usually in that mysterious 12:30 to 1:30 AM range. If it had been a long night, it was one last shot at redemption. If it had been a good night, it was a chance to close out the night in style.

Normally, we don’t offer up our own votes; but this one deserves a list. We’ll rank ’em 5 to 1 but they are all great. So, here’s our list. . .

5.  Restless Heart – “The Blues Eyes In Texas”.

Just a great song to begin with, this one was also a strong cross-over hit that women and men both liked. That was key for the post-12:30 dance requirement. Now, if the girl you were sparking that night had green or brown eyes, you’d probably pass on this one and wait for another last chance dance.

4.  George Strait – “The Chair”.

Ok, this one would be a must-dance at anytime of the evening most night. Usually though a good DJ knew just when to work it into the evening. It even offered up a free opening line. What girl didn’t go to the Midnight Rodeo wanting to dance with…errr… to King George.

3.  Leon Everette – “Midnight Rodeo”.

Maybe not your typical romantic song, but it cut to the point and if you were actually AT the Midnight Rodeo in Lubbock it cranked things up a notch. This one sometimes got played twice in a night (Wednesdays and later Thursdays”. This was a good song to set-up another dance for later unless it was already later and then you knew what you had to do. Bonus points for a “clock radio” reference.

2.  The Maines Brothers Band – “Break The Fall”. 

You didn’t really think I could put together this list and not have this song in the Top 5! Could have easily been #1 and at a lot of different times for a lot of different folks it was. Jerry Brownlow at his finest and Lloyd Maines work on the steel is beyond description. Particularly after 1 AM on a Wednesday night in Lubbock, Texas in the 1990s. This song was strong with the local girls as well, so if you knew where your intended dance partner was from, it could be most effective. A standard. Maybe the standard.

1. Brooks and Dunn – “Neon Moon”. 

Again, this is our list and like all list they’re dependent on time-frame, memory and “effectiveness”. By effectiveness I mean this was/is a great song and for some reason one of the few I could still dance to somewhat non-awkwardly for all involved by the end of the evening! Like the entire list, it is first and foremost a great song. You immediately knew it when the first notes were struck. It was slow, but not too slow and has a killer chorus. Add in some “neon” lights around the bar and it’s just a perfect “ender” song for an evening. Or beginning song for an evening that might include taqiutos or Town & Country, depending on your tastes!


There ya go! Our Top 5 “Last Chance/Last Dance” Songs from our Midnight Rodeo Era from the late 80s to the 90s. Can’t wait to see what your list looks like.


EDITOR’S NOTE: If Ryan Hyatt actually danced with any of you reading this at any time he would like to issue a heart-felt apology and hopes that the dance ended without injury or need for therapy.


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