TYLER, Texas (KETK) – East Texas has a rich musical history, and a new mural in downtown Tyler is spotlighting that heritage.
The mural is the work of Edwin Holt and his Holt Creative Group, a design and marketing company located on University Place just south of the downtown square.
It adorns one side of the building where the agency is housed and highlights three musical legends with deep roots in the East Texas soil – Van Cliburn, an internationally renowned classical pianist from Kilgore; blues guitarist Freddie King of Gilmer, whose distinctive guitar style and powerful voice have influenced countless musicians; and country music icon George Jones of Saratoga, known to fans as “The Possum” and to history as one of the all-time country music greats.
Holt said he hopes the mural reminds people of the contributions East Texas has made to music and that it “grows some incredible talent.”
He said he believes that people will appreciate that reminder “especially now. I think that right now we need something to be proud of, here and all over the U.S.”
The work isn’t done yet. Holt and his group have a plan for a phase two, which will include creating QR codes for each artist so that as people walk by the mural, they can scan the code with their phones to learn more about the icons who started in East Texas but left their mark on the world.
Holt, who is a musician himself, also hopes that the mural and those it memorializes will inspire others to make their own mark.
“Just express that creativity, brother.”