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Weekends at Papa Woody's never run low on volume

Photo: Rick Cortez, License: N/A

Rick Cortez

Ashley Guzman gets up close and personal with some Papa Woody's fans.

As I trekked south on 281 to Papa Woody's Roadhouse on a Saturday night, I was looking forward to getting back off the path I'd beaten for myself on the bar circuit. But I was troubled by first impressions: I'd been here on a previous Wednesday night, when I found it desolate, a karaoke night sans karaoke, and in the uncomfortable position of being the only lady attending on "ladies night." (Must confess, though, those dollar wells helped ease my bar blues a little.)

Thankfully, this Southside bar welcomed me back with a thunderous vengeance. A live cover of Pearl Jam's "Even Flow" greeted me as I walked up to the entrance. I could almost feel the building quiver from the weight of the decibel load. The stage is equipped with eight subwoofers and 15 amps (along with a solid light show), and I felt every bit of it once I moseyed my way around the cozy and nicely renovated bar. Audiomouth ran through a list of ear-splitting melodies, such as Drowning Pool's "Bodies" and System Of A Down's "Aerials." Though such covers usually aren't my cup of tea, the patrons around me seemed to feel differently. I posted up at the end of the bar for a while sipping a whiskey and water, noticing the crowd was diverse and alive with head banging, laughter, and just good old-fashioned revelry. I observed a variety of drinkers lining up at the bar: a group of rowdy twenty-something guys ordering Bud Lights, a conservatively dressed man in his mid-forties requesting a round of shots, a Dallas Cowboys fanatic proudly sporting a T-shirt with the eloquent words, "Fuck All Cowboy Haters," and a young couple that looked like they might be enjoying a second date. "We have people of all walks of life, of all ages that come in here and hang out," said bartender Josh Anderson.

Thursdays bring out a medley of people when the underage band, Breaking Boundryz. "When we have the kids play, it's all ages because a lot of their friends come from school and we've even had a couple of their teachers come out and see them," said Anderson. Bands such as Drowning Mona, Spitfire, and Flipside also perform at the roadhouse, and The Heroine played a show here the day before they shared a stage with Marilyn Manson at KISS Fest 2012 in early May. Any other night of the week, you can expect to run into regulars like the oil well workers from next door, cyclists passing through for a beer, or even an old man proud to be a "truck driver and a rock 'n' roller."

Before calling it a night, Audiomouth's front man hollered out, "Let's drink something for someone for some reason!" I could still hear the howls as I hit out into the parking lot. And, yes, I'm pretty sure the house was literally rocking by that point. •

Papa Woody's Roadhouse

8902 S Presa
(210) 534-6000

A rowdy but homely roadhouse with a killer sound system, featuring a variety of live music on the weekends attracting revelers from all necks of the woods.

Best use
Night out with your best buds, your pops, or even your beer-drinking abuelita.

Wells: $3; Domestics: $3;
Imports: $3.50

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