The Midnight Flyer Story- Jim Luke Remembers 

I formed the original Midnight Flyer Band in Houston, in 1983, the same year I met Big Walter The Thunderbird, the great Texas blues pianist and singer. Check out "Gamblin' Woman" on YouTube. More on Walter later, but I formed the band with horns because I realized that they were an integral part of Texas Blues. So many Texas blues musicians used horns, including Junior Parker, T-bone Walker, Bobby Bland, Albert Collins, Doug Sahm, Roy Head, Edgar Winter, Gatemouth Brown, my hero Delbert McClinton and many more. 

I started my musical career in Tampa, Florida, playing for a country band called the Telecasters who were looking for a sax player. I called them up, and said I played “Mississippi Saxophone,” and I would be right down for an audition. They gave me the gig, so we played every weekend for several years. I heard Delbert McClinton on the radio, and figured there had to be something in the water in Texas for a white boy to sing like that.  

So I came to Houston in 1980, and have lived in Texas ever since. Started playing with my brother from another mother, Herman Kluge, whose artwork we still use. Herman got me involved with “Tupelo” and we made some great music. I began playing with Charlie Bickley, with musicians that helped me put together the horn band for a Big Walter Juneteenth show. So we did the show, and then I started the original Midnight Flyer Band. I will soon post a separate blog of that band, and the great musicians I was honored to work with. 

In 1996, I had the opportunity to move to Austin, and fronted several bands, including the Jumpcats, and the JukeJammers, which finally brought me back to the horn band blues with the “new” Midnight Flyer Band.  We played regularly, and did some recordings, and worked with several female vocalists, including the multi-talented Dawn Erin. In the last few years, my wife Mary has joined me on bass guitar and vocals. We have also been blessed with the help of Jeff Ofner, a great multi-horn sax player as well as Dan Arciniega on guitar.  

We continue to perform for private parties and other performances in the Hill Country, and expand our songlist to cater to the gumbo musical tastes of Texas Music Fans.