Asleep at the Wheel

Still the King: Celebrating the Music of Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys (Bismeaux)

SXSW 2015 Records

Asleep at the Wheel

Still the King: Celebrating the Music of Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys (Bismeaux)

This being the third time Asleep at the Wheel celebrates the King of Western Swing on disc, no one could accuse Ray Benson and friends of running out of ideas. There's an attention to detail paid to everything, right down to the packaging – an exacting, miniature depiction of Wills' favorite cigar box – that signals their obsession as nothing short of enduring affection. There's a special guest for nearly every one of its 22 tracks, such stalwarts as Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Lyle Lovett, and George Strait offsetting relative newcomers Kat Edmonson, Old Crow Medicine Show, the Avett Brothers, Elizabeth Cook, and others. This is also the first Wheel album to feature new replacements: pianist/vocalist Emily Gimble (her grandfather Johnny being a Texas Playboy) and fiddler/vocalist Katie Shore. New blood thus mixes with old style on tunes from Wills' songbook ("Faded Love," "Time Changes Everything") as well as those composed by legendary Texas writer Cindy Walker ("Bubbles in My Beer"). The results are predictably top-notch. (8pm, Saxon Pub)

****

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Asleep at the Wheel, SXSW Music 2015

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