Willie and the Wheel

Willie and the Wheel

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It was just a matter of time before Willie Nelson cut a record with fellow Texan legends Asleep at the Wheel: Willie may duet with anybody who wanders onto his bus, but he and the Wheel have a shared background in Western swing, a background they explore thoroughly on 2009's Willie and the Wheel. If it seems like Willie and the Wheel should have cut an album together a little earlier than 2009, well, they almost did. During Nelson's seminal stint at Atlantic in the early '70s, producer/label head Jerry Wexler urged Willie to record a duet album with the Wheel, but Nelson left the label before it could happen. The idea was revived when Wexler saw Asleep at the Wheel open for Nelson in 2007 and soon enough, the two parties got together to run through a bunch of standards. Surprise isn't the order of the day on Willie and the Wheel; it's pretty easy to guess the songbook just based on the collaboration and sure enough, there's a hefty dose of Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys -- "Right or Wrong," "Bring it on Down to My House," "Corrine Corrina" -- and a bunch of Milton Brown, Cliff Bruner, and Spade Cooley. Chances are, many of the songs would have remained the same if this had been cut back in the early '70s, but the spirit is much different. Back then, the teaming would have been the sound of young insurgents creating their own bridge to the past, but this is the sound of the old guard settling in and doing what they do best, laying back instead of pushing forward, enjoying each other's company instead of gearing up for a cutting contest. While it's possible to discern some tattered edges on the fringe -- in particular, Willie's voice can sound a bit gruff and rough -- this is as comfortable and welcoming as a familiar old leather jacket. It's no surprise that it feels good.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/03/2009
Label: Bismeaux Productions
UPC: 0020286128724
catalogNumber: 1287
Rank: 32213

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Willie Nelson   Primary Artist,Vocals
Asleep at the Wheel   Primary Artist
Dave Alexander   Trumpet
Paul Shaffer   Piano
Ray Benson   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Vocals
Floyd Domino   Piano
Vince Gill   Electric Guitar
Michael Mordecai   Trombone
David Sanger   Drums
Kevin Smith   Bass Guitar
David Earl Miller   Bass
Eddie Rivers   Steel Guitar
Elizabeth McQueen   Vocals
John Michael Whitby   Piano
Jonathan Doyle   Clarinet
Sam Seifert   Acoustic Guitar
Kevin C. Smith   Bass
Dave Miller   Bass Guitar
Jason Roberts   Fiddle,Mandolin,Vocals,Electronic Mandolin

Technical Credits

Bennie Moten   Composer
Frankie "Half-Pint" Jaxon   Composer
Spade Cooley   Composer
Ray Benson   Arranger,Producer,Liner Notes,Art Direction,Audio Production
Walter Donaldson   Composer
Haven Gillespie   Composer
Thamon Hayes   Composer
Peter Schwarz   Audio Production
Jerry Wexler   Executive Producer,Audio Production
Paul Biese   Composer
Rex Griffin   Composer
Dick Reeves   Art Direction
Boo Macleod   Engineer
C. Williams   Composer
Vance Powell   Engineer
Traditional   Composer
Adam Odor   Engineer
Dan Howell   Composer
Sam Seifert   Engineer
Arthur L. Sizemore   Composer
S. Williams   Composer

Customer Reviews

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Willie and the Wheel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hannasgrammy More than 1 year ago
If you're a fan of Asleep at the Wheel and/or Willie, this is a must have for your collection. Great orchestration and original arrangements combined with Ray and Willie's whiskey smooth lyrics. You just can't beat that combination.
4beanie More than 1 year ago
This one is a toe tapping treasure! It puts a smile on your face and a happy bounce in your step. Just what we need during these trying times! God Bless WILLIE NELSON
Bassoprofundo More than 1 year ago
This album is really quite good. I don't think everything that Willie does is great but getting together with Asleep at the Wheel was a touch of genius that was long overdue. Willie sounds like he enjoyed these sessions. His voice just shines on these old time songs. Of course, the Wheel are no slouches and bring plenty of tasty licks along the way. If you know who Bob Wills was, get this CD. If you don't, get it anyway, it'll broaden your horizons.
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