The GOAT ain't no foolin' and he don’t need no more schoolin, he was just born to walk the line. Welcome to GOAT U. The hub for all things music! Here you can act just like a domino and fall on your face. Learn and discover legendary singer/songwriters, current and new artists, along with epic concerts, banger albums, and one of a kind music venues. Ain’t no registration. Ain’t no student loans. You may not learn to read or write but you will surely learn to roll dem bones. Attendance will never be taken and pharmaceutical enhancements are encouraged. See you in class!

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G.O.A.T. University

Latest Sessions (for learnin' alphabetically, click the categories above)

The Listening Room

The Earl of Old Town: A Chicago Folk Music Legacy

For many Chicago residents, a stroll up Wells Street near North Avenue in Old Town is a familiar journey, with landmarks like Second City on the left and Wells on Wells on the right. Yet, delving into the history of this vibrant neighborhood reveals a bygone era when Old Town resonated with the sounds of folk music. Where Cocoran's Pub now stands, there once thrived a legendary folk music club known as The Earl of Old Town.

Our introduction to The Earl of Old Town came through a 1970 recording titled “The Gathering at The Earl of Old Town.” The performances and songwriting of Jim Post, Steve Goodman, and other renowned Chicago folk singers captivated us, sparking curiosity about the iconic venue on the album cover. As we delved deeper into its history, We uncovered a rich narrative and received invaluable insights from those who experienced it firsthand, including Ed Holstein, Chris Farrell, and Patti Rain.

The Amazing Rhythm Aces

The band emerged in the early 1970s as a prominent American country-rock band, known for their unique blend of country, rock, blues, and pop elements. Formed in Memphis, Tennessee, the band's original lineup included Russell Smith, Jeff Davis, Barry "Byrd" Burton, James Hooker, and Billy Earheart. They gained widespread recognition with their debut album, "Stacked Deck," released in 1975, which featured their hit single "Third Rate Romance." Renowned for their exceptional musicianship and songwriting prowess, the Amazing Rhythm Aces earned critical acclaim and a dedicated fanbase for their eclectic sound and engaging live performances. Throughout their career, the band released several albums, showcasing their versatility and creativity, before disbanding in the 1980s. However, they reunited periodically for tours and recordings, leaving a lasting legacy in the realm of country-rock music with their distinctive style and memorable songs.

Paul Simon

Paul Simon stands as one of the greatest songwriters of all time due to his unparalleled ability to craft timeless and deeply resonant music that transcends generations. With a career spanning over six decades, Simon's songwriting prowess has left an indelible mark on the music industry. His eclectic fusion of folk, rock, world music, and pop, combined with his introspective lyrics and intricate melodies, showcases a rare versatility and innovation. From the introspective poetry of "The Sound of Silence" to the rhythmic exuberance of "Graceland," Simon's repertoire is a testament to his creative genius and profound understanding of human emotions and experiences. His songs not only entertain but also provoke thought and evoke powerful emotions, making him a master storyteller and a cultural icon. Through his unparalleled body of work, Paul Simon has cemented his legacy as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, whose influence will continue to inspire generations to come.

Steve Earle

Steve Earle is a Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter and musician known for his distinct blend of country, rock, folk, and blues. Born on January 17, 1955, in Fort Monroe, Virginia, Earle's early exposure to music, coupled with his passion for storytelling, laid the foundation for his prolific career. His breakthrough album, Guitar Town, catapulted him to fame in 1986, and since then, he has released a diverse body of work that defies genre boundaries. Beyond his musical talents, Earle is also recognized for his activism and advocacy on issues ranging from prison reform to environmental conservation. With his raw honesty, evocative lyrics, and unwavering commitment to social justice, Steve Earle continues to captivate audiences worldwide. One of Steve Earle's notable hits is "Copperhead Road," released in 1988 as the title track of his third studio album. This electrifying song blends elements of country, rock, and folk with its driving rhythm and gritty storytelling. "Copperhead Road" tells the tale of a Vietnam War veteran turned moonshine runner in rural Tennessee, grappling with the legacy of his family's moonshine business and his own experiences in war. The song's infectious beat and Earle's impassioned vocals draw listeners into the narrative, evoking a sense of urgency and rebellion. With its powerful imagery and anthemic chorus, "Copperhead Road" became a chart-topping hit and remains one of Steve Earle's most enduring and beloved songs. Its enduring popularity speaks to Earle's ability to craft timeless music that resonates with audiences across generations.

Nanci Griffith

Such a defining voice in American folk music. Raised in a household steeped in the traditions of folk, country, and bluegrass, Griffith's early influences laid the foundation for her distinctive songwriting and ethereal soprano voice. Her career, which took flight in the late 1970s, saw her rise to prominence with albums like The Last of the True Believers (1986) and Other Voices, Other Rooms (1993), where she showcased her ability to weave intricate narratives with heartfelt melodies. Griffith's legacy extends beyond her own recordings; she served as a mentor to emerging artists and used her music as a platform to address social and political issues. Despite her passing on August 13, 2021, Nanci Griffith's impact on the folk music landscape remains profound, as her songs continue to resonate with audiences worldwide, reflecting the essence of the heartland and the human experience.

Lyle Lovett

A renowned American singer, songwriter, and actor celebrated for his distinctive blend of country, folk, and blues music. Hailing from Klein, Texas, Lovett's career spans decades and has earned him critical acclaim and a loyal fanbase. He emerged in the 1980s with his self-titled debut album and quickly garnered attention for his unique voice, witty lyrics, and genre-defying style. Throughout his career, Lovett has released numerous albums, including standout works like Pontiac and Joshua Judges Ruth, showcasing his versatility as an artist. Beyond music, Lovett has also dabbled in acting, appearing in both television and film roles. With his distinctive musical style and storytelling prowess, Lyle Lovett remains a beloved figure in American music, influencing generations of musicians and captivating audiences worldwide.

Ray Wylie Hubbard

He is a revered American singer-songwriter and a prominent figure in the outlaw country and Americana music scenes. Born on November 13, 1946, in Soper, Oklahoma, Hubbard's musical journey began in the 1960s when he moved to Red River, New Mexico, and formed a folk rock band called Three Faces West. In the 1970s, he relocated to Austin, Texas, becoming a central figure in the progressive country and outlaw country movements. Hubbard gained recognition for his raw and gritty songwriting, often blending elements of country, blues, and rock.

One of his most notable songs, "Up Against the Wall, Redneck Mother," became a hit for Jerry Jeff Walker in the early '70s, solidifying Hubbard's reputation as a songwriter. Despite facing a period of relative obscurity in the 1980s and 1990s, he experienced a career resurgence in the 2000s, marked by a string of critically acclaimed albums such as Dangerous Spirits (1997) and Grifter's Hymnal (2012). His later work showcased a distinctive blend of wisdom, humor, and a gritty musical style, earning him a dedicated fan base.

Ray Wylie Hubbard's enduring career is characterized by his authenticity, poetic lyricism, and a willingness to push musical boundaries. He remains a revered figure in the roots music community, influencing a new generation of artists with his unique storytelling and uncompromising approach to his craft.

Blaze Foley

Blaze Foley, born Michael David Fuller in 1949, was an American singer-songwriter and a prominent figure in the Texas outlaw country music scene. Despite facing numerous challenges throughout his life, Foley left an indelible mark on the music world with his raw and emotive songwriting. Known for his gritty, soulful voice and poignant lyrics, Foley's music often reflected the struggles and hardships he experienced. Some of his notable songs include "If I Could Only Fly" and "Clay Pigeons," which have been covered by various artists. Foley's unconventional lifestyle and dedication to his craft contributed to his cult following, and his influence continues to be felt in the alternative country and folk music genres. Tragically, his life was cut short in 1989 at the age of 39, but his legacy lives on through his timeless songs and the enduring impact he had on the Texas music scene.

Honor and celebrate Blaze with our Officially Licensed Tee.

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan is widely recognized as a pivotal figure in the realm of folk music, his influence extending far beyond the genre's boundaries. Emerging in the early 1960s, Dylan's poignant lyrics and distinctive vocal style reshaped the landscape of folk music, infusing it with a social and political consciousness. His early works, such as "Blowin' in the Wind" and "The Times They Are a-Changin'," became anthems for the civil rights movement and the broader social upheavals of the era. Dylan's ability to blend traditional folk elements with poetic, introspective lyrics set him apart, earning him the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2016. Throughout his prolific career, he continued to evolve, incorporating rock and other genres into his music. Bob Dylan's enduring impact on folk music lies not only in his remarkable songwriting but also in his fearless exploration and reinvention of the genre, leaving an indelible mark on the cultural and musical landscape.

Red Headed Stranger

Album by Willie Nelson

Red Headed Stranger is a landmark album in the country music genre, released by iconic American singer-songwriter Willie Nelson in 1975. This concept album tells the gripping tale of a preacher on the run after committing a crime of passion. The album's unique narrative structure, combined with Nelson's distinctively laid-back yet emotionally resonant voice, helped redefine country music and garnered widespread acclaim. Red Headed Stranger features a blend of traditional country, folk, and outlaw elements, creating a sound that remains influential to this day. The album's standout tracks, including the title track and "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," showcase Nelson's songwriting prowess and contributed to the record's enduring legacy in the annals of country music history.