Asleep at the Wheel 2017
Thursday April 20 and Friday April 21
Since the early '70s, Asleep at the Wheel has been the most important force in keeping the sound of Western swing alive. In reviving the freewheeling, eclectic sensibility of Western swing godfather Bob Wills, the Grammy-winning Wheel has earned enthusiastic critical praise throughout its lengthy career; not only has it preserved classic sounds that had all but disappeared from country music, but it has been able to update the music, keeping it a living, breathing art form. Typically featuring eight to 11 musicians, the group has gone through myriad changes (at last count, over 80 members had passed through the ranks), but frontman Ray Benson has held it together for four decades, keeping Asleep at the Wheel a viable recording and touring concern and maintaining their devotion to classic-style Western swing.