The sounds of Waco

Waco offers a surprisingly well-balanced and vibrant music scene. Photo illustration by Brittany Tankersley

By Avery Ballmann | Staff Writer

Despite what some may think, Waco has a prominent music scene. From country and R&B to punk and indie/alternative music, here is a glimpse of the sounds of Waco.


Collin Selman entered the music scene in 2019 with the release of his single “$ellophane.” He has since released seven singles that have specific vibes and make the listener feel like the main character. I went to his first single release party at Brotherwell Brewing, and since then, he has been consistently producing catchy singles.


The Irons are an all-time favorite of mine. They played at multiple venues around Waco in 2018, making stops at Pinewood, Spin Connection, Brotherwell Brewing and even my friend’s birthday party. The Irons have five albums of diverse tracks, including catchy tunes and some songs only holding random sounds. This band now primarily performs in Austin, but they were Waco performers for a brief time.


Rad Dragon has been producing music on Spotify since 2018. They have performed at Spin Connection — a local record store — many times, and I have seen them in concert here as well. Their music is punk angst and very reminiscent of Blink-182. While this genre is not my favorite, this band knows how to perform. Even in Spin Connection’s tiny shop, there was always a mosh pit that got the crowd hyped up when I attended a show.

Another band that fits this music genre is The Dimaggios. They began playing in Waco in 2015, and they have released two albums. They have also played at Spin Connection alongside Rad Dragon.


A new band I have discovered is Hi-Five. This band has been around since the 90s, putting out upbeat, moody hits. They are Waco’s very own boy band that probably made the girls go crazy. I could listen to their music all day and not get tired of it.


I am not well-versed in country music, but Wade Bowen and Holly Tucker are the Waco artists who stood out to me. Wade Bowen has had music out since 2011. He even has a music festival called the Bowen Music Fest that fundraises for families and children around Waco who are in need of help. I have to admit: I enjoy Texas country music because Texas is where I’m from, but you can relate to his songs even if you aren’t into the country lifestyle.

Holly Tucker, another Wacoan, competed on NBC’s “The Voice” in 2013. Tucker made it to the top six before being eliminated. I remember watching this season on TV, and everyone in Waco was rooting for her. Tucker is currently on tour around Texas and still performs in Waco.

I’m not sure how Waco’s music scene came to be, but as a Wacoan, I appreciate its resilience and diversity. Organizations and businesses like Keep Waco Loud and Spin Connection foster these bands by opening their doors to host concerts. To listen to these mentioned artists on Spotify, click here.