A Good Long Drive
Fifty Years of Texas Country Reporter
256 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 x 1.20 in, 10 b&w photos
Sales Date: September 7, 2021
In 2021, Texas Country Reporter celebrates its fiftieth season on the air. Broadcast every week on stations across Texas, it focuses on “ordinary people doing extraordinary things.” And at the center of it is Bob Phillips, the show’s creator and host—an erstwhile poor kid from Dallas who ended up with a job that allowed him to rub elbows with sports figures, entertainers, and politicians but who preferred to spend his time on the back roads, listening to less-famous Texans tell their stories.
In this memoir, Phillips tells his own story, from his early days as a reporter and his initial pitch for the show while a student at SMU to his ongoing work at the longest-running independently produced TV show in American television history. As we travel with Phillips on his journey, we meet Willie Nelson and former Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry; reflect on memorable, unusual, and challenging show segments; experience the behind-the-scenes drama that goes on in local television; witness the launching of an annual festival; and discover the unbelievable allure of Texas, its culture, and, especially, its people. Spanning generations, A Good Long Drive is proof that life’s journey really is a destination unto itself.
Bob Phillips's memoir about the classic television series Texas Country Reporter is a big hearted, beautifully written story. Phillips is television's poet laureate of rural and small town Texas.~Dan Rather
Reading this book is like riding in the van with Bob and the crew of TCR on their way to another surprising story. It’s the perfect behind-the-scenes companion to one of the best TV shows in Texas.~Nolan Ryan
If you love Texas and all of its quirks, cool things and cool people, add this book to your collection.~Abilene Reporter-News
[A Good Long Drive] details [Phillips'] life, gives a behind-the-scenes look at how TCR came to be, and highlights some of Phillips’s favorite stories from the road.~Garden and Gun
[A Good Long Drive] recounts many memorable, unusual, and challenging tales...Phillips also recounts behind the scenes drama in the television industry, describes the people, places, and culture of Texas, and encourages us to see life's journey as a destination.~County Line Magazine
- Part One: Only the Beginning
- Part Two: Achieving the Dream. Almost.
- Part Three: The First Years of Fifty
- Part Four: A New Beginning
- Part Five: Settling in for the Long Haul
- Part Six: Stories from the Back Roads
- Photo Credits
The publication of A Good Long Drive was made possible by the support of the Charles N. Prothro Texana Endowment.