Photo by Mike Shore


Asleep at the Wheel and Dale Watson

June 25
7 p.m.
Americana, Classic Rock, Rock, Singer-Songwriter

Ray Benson has been at the helm of Asleep at the Wheel (and mostly alert) for nigh on a half-century, spreading the Western swing gospel of Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys. Since the 1970s, when the band often regaled the faithful from the stage of Austin’s Armadillo World Headquarters, Benson and a frequently evolving lineup (now having run through upward of 80 musicians) have kept alive the Western swing tradition—a dancehall fusion of jazz, jump blues, country, and folk—with a mix of humor, superb musicianship, and outstanding showmanship. 2015’s Still the King, AATW’s third specific tribute to Wills, is a characteristically rollicking jaunt through WS nuggets, its multi-generational guest list ranging from original Playboy Leon Rausch to the Avett Brothers. Hardcore country traditionalist Dale Watson opens, and he and Benson are sure to run through tunes from their January collaboration Dale & Ray, a thoroughly engaging Texas charmer with tributes to Merle Haggard and Buck Owens.