Last of the Walther Wednesdays
Last of the Walther Wednesdays
After a year and half of ‘Walther Wednesday’s’, it was time to say goodbye to their regular Wednesday night gigs at Gruene Hall, so on March 25th, that’s exactly what they did.
Walther and his band started playing weekly gigs at the historic venue in October of 2007 and built an impressive fan base in the process. After paying his dues in the local New Braunfels band Rodger Wilco, Zack went out on his own and formed the Cronkites. Many fans ask how they came up with their name, the Cronkites. One story goes that since Zack’s last name is spelled Walther, like Walther Cronkite, the famous TV newsman, that’s how they picked their name. Zack tells the story that in their early days; they really didn’t have a name. So at the end of their live shows, he’d simply rattle off any name he could think of, like ‘Thank you, we’re Zack Walther & the Rockers, just say the first name that popped in his head.’ One day his drummer just yelled out ‘The Cronkites’ and it just seemed to fit. Regardless of how they got their name, one thing is for certain, everyone in central Texas knows who they are.
The band got their start playing weekly gigs at Tavern in the Gruene, a popular live venue in New Braunfels on Gruene Road. The crowds started growing each week as the word spread about a great new band tearing the roof off the local club on a regular basis. As their crowds grew, the band realized they needed a CD to sell at the club, so they quickly recorded an EP titled ‘Death of Rodger,’ giving a nod to Zack’s previous band, Rodger Wilco. Before long, they captured one of their live shows on tape and realized the blistering ‘Live at Tavern in the Gruene’ CD. This opened the door to another round of new fans and before long, other venues came calling.
Gruene Hall, less than a mile down the road from Tavern, offered the band a regular weekly gig on Wednesday nights. Tuesdays are known as ‘Two Ton Tuesdays’ because of the decade long shows every Tuesday night by San Antonio rockers, ‘Two Tons of Steel.’ So, Wednesdays soon became known as ‘Walther Wednesdays’ and remained that until March 25th when the band said goodbye. The final night was special and the hall was packed with fans that came out to say their goodbyes. During the first set, the band played the favorites from the EP and live CD, plus a few carefully chosen cover tunes. For their second set, they played the entire new CD, ‘Ambition,’ in it’s entirety as a special treat for the fans that played such an important role it getting the CD recorded.
When it came time to record the CD, the band started a grass roots campaign to get donations from their fans to help finance the project. The idea was so successful, the band was able to record the CD and ship it to fans without having to sell their souls or offer up their first born for collateral. ‘Ambition’ hit the streets in March and proved once and for all that this band is the real deal. They held their official CD release party at Gruene Hall on Friday night, April 3rd with the Scott Wiggins Band opening the show. The new CD is available at all area retail outlets like Best Buy, Hastings and Lone Star Music. See zackwalther.com for more info on this exciting new band.