This Week in Texas Music History: Erbie Bowser
He began playing piano as a child in the church choir. Before he had finished high school, Bowser was touring the South with blues, jazz, and boogie-woogie bands. After performing in Europe, Africa, and elsewhere, Bowser moved to Odessa in 1949, where he worked in the oilfields and played with local guitarist, T.D. Bell. By 1960, the two had relocated to Austin, where they played at the Victory Grill and other venues on the Texas “chitlin’ circuit.”
Along with Roosevelt “Grey Ghost” Thomas and others, Bowser came to be known as one of the revered “Texas Piano Professors,” and he went on to perform at Carnegie Hall and win a number of honors and awards.