Asleep at the Wheel, the long-running and influential Western-swing band, will mark 50 years together with a new album. The aptly titled Half a Hundred Years will be released in October and features a number of all-star guests.
The Wheel preview the upcoming LP with the title track, released on Friday. Elevated by buoyant horns and singer Ray Benson’s drawling baritone, the track is the ultimate road song: “I’ve been on the road for half a hundred years,” Benson boasts.
“I was trying to get across the sacrifices you have to make in 50 years on the road and the other positive side of it. The great experiences, the places I’ve been, and all the amazing people I’ve had the opportunity to meet and play music with,” Benson said in a statement.
The album Half a Hundred Years spans 19 songs includes a number of A-list collaborations: George Strait, Emmylou Harris, Lyle Lovett, Lee Ann Womack, and Bill Kirchen all pop up. Willie Nelson, who paired with Asleep at the Wheel for 2009’s Willie and the Wheel, appears on no less than three tracks. He also earns a shout-out in the title song. “I might catch up to Willie one of these days,” Benson ad libs, paying homage to the enduring road warrior.
Half a Hundred Years will be released October 1st on Home Records in partnership with Thirty Tigers.
Half a Hundred Years Tracklist:
1. “Half a Hundred Years”
2. “It’s the Same Old South” feat. Chris O’Connell
3. “I Do What I Must” feat. Leroy Preston
4. “There You Go Again” feat. Lyle Lovett
5. “My Little Baby” feat. Chris O’Connell
6. “Paycheck to Paycheck” feat. Leroy Preston
7. “Word to the Wise” feat. Bill Kirchen
8. “That’s How I Remember It” feat. Chris O’Connell
9. “The Photo” feat. Leroy Preston
10. “I Love You Most of All (When You’re Not Here)” feat. Lucky Oceans
11. “The Wheel Boogie”
12. “Take Me Back to Tulsa” feat. George Strait and Willie Nelson
13. “The Letter That Johnny Walker Read” feat. Lee Ann Womack
14. “Bump Bounce Boogie” Feat. Chris O’Connell, Elizabeth McQueen, & Katie Shore
15. “Miles and Miles of Texas”
16. “Get Your Kicks on Route 66” Feat. Leroy Preston, Johnny Nicholas, & Ray Benson
17. “Marie” Feat. Willie Nelson
18. “Spanish Two Step” Feat. Johnny Gimble And Jesse Ashlock
19. “The Road Will Hold Me Tonight” Feat. Emmylou Harris and Willie Nelson