Asleep At The Wheel Bring Their Christmas Show To Florida

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Dec 202018

By Joshua Wallace

Asleep At The Wheel

This past Tuesday night on December 18th, 2018 I was fortunate enough to catch Asleep At The Wheel live at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. This was my first time seeing Asleep At The Wheel live and I was blown away by this show. Their tight musicianship and all around great showmanship make this one of the best live bands I have seen in country music. The band has been around for 48.5 years, and even with tons of lineup changes during this time, Asleep At The Wheel is still a force to be reckoned with live. This show was a Christmas themed show and the majority of the first hour was hits selected from their catalog of Christmas tunes. They still hit everything you would expect them to in a close to two hour set that had the crowd singing, clapping and dancing along.

Jay Reynolds on saxophone with Eddie Rivers taking a break from pedal steel on the band’s second saxophone

Ray Benson getting the crowd going during “Christmas In Jail”

There was no opening act this evening and Asleep At The Wheel took the stage at approximately 8pm. They got right into it with hits like “Route 66” and the classic Waylon Jennings tune “Bob Wills Is Still The King” and “San Antonio Rose” by Bob Wills himself. The Christmas portion of the show took up most of the first hour and contained many Christmas traditional tunes along with some original Christmas tunes like “Christmas In Jail”. They also did renditions of “Silent Night”, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas”, “Feliz Navidad” and others. Pedal steel player Eddie Rivers even took the mic for a great rendition of “Blue Christmas”.

Eddie Rivers singing “Blue Christmas”

Katie Shore on vocals during “Call It A Day Tonight”

Speaking of band members taking the mic, fiddle player Katie Shore had her share of lead vocal performances throughout the night. However, a highlight for me was her duet with Ray on “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” which had a playful back and forth that just can’t be captured in the studio and must be heard live. She also had turns with lead vocals on “Call It A Day Tonight”, “Jack, I’m Mellow” and the Hawaiian Christmas tune “Mele Kalikimaka”. Katie is the perfect vocal compliment to Ray’s deeper voice and it’s easy to see why she was heavily featured on the band’s New Routes album. Speaking of that album, the band closed off the regular set about an hour and thirty minutes in with a jamming rendition of “Seven Nights To Rock”. They did come back for an encore which included the likes of “Big Balls In Cowtown”, “All My Exes Live In Texas” and “Choo Choo Ch’ Boogie”.

Tiger Rag

Overall, the band performed a great nearly two hour set that closed out before 10pm which is good for a weeknight. I highly recommend checking out Asleep At The Wheel if they come through your area. Asleep At The Wheel do come through Florida every now and then, but I have not had the chance to see them live before now and I’m very glad I did. Asleep At The Wheel tours nonstop and you can check out their dates to see if they are coming near you on the band’s website.

Encore Jam

Feb 132018

Folks we JUST GOT started here tonight and they introduced tonight’s hosts Mr. Dale Watson and Miss Danielle Colby. They played a gorgeous version of America The Beautiful. They are explaining the program and what is to transpire here.

8:15PM Mr. James Hand is performing “In The Corner By The Table”.

8:18PM Miss Danielle is introducing Miss Nikki Lane and she is performing “Viva Las Vegas’.

8:25PM Miss Rosie Flores is here, Mr. Dale is telling us about her Cowpunk and Bakersfield influences.
Mr. Levi Dexter is here presenting the Honky Tonk Female and the winner is Miss Brennen Leigh.

8:27PM Miss Danielle is with Mr. Dale introducing Asleep At The Wheel, and they are playing “Get You Kicks On Route 66′.

8:34PM Mr. Dale And Mr. Ray are performing ” Feeling Haggard” off their duet album.

8:40PM Mr. Jake Penrod and Miss Nikki Lane just announced Luke Bell as Honky Tonk Male winner!

8:42PM Mr. Dale is loving on Tillford Sellers, who couldn’t make it tonight. He is watching from heaven.

8:43PM Motel Mirrors is performing right now.

8:48 The Reeves Brothers just won Honky Tonk Band of the year.

8:53PM Mr. Unknown Hinson is playing right now.

8:55PM We are announcing the Outlaw Female Winner being presented by Miss Bonnie Montgomerey and the
winner is…….Nikki Lane.

8:58PM Mr. Jesse Dayton and are presenting the Outlaw Male Award and the winner is Cody Jinks.

9:14PM Junior Brown is presenting the Pioneer Of The Sound winner Mr Lloyd Green.

9:22PM Mr. Lloyd Green is playing Jukebox Charlie and Just between You And Me. He played on the
studio albums of both songs and MANY MORE!

9:48PM We are back from intermission, with beer jokes.

9:50PM W.S. Fluke Holland and others are remembering Mr. Sam Phillips and Sun Records.

10:00 The Humna Jukebox Mr. Sleepy Labeef is playing songs now.

10:03 Mr. Jesse Dayton is up right now talking about a story on Crooke And Chase, and how he
got to record with Waylon and Cash. He is playing Big River.

10:16PM Mr. Jason D Williams is tearing the place apart with two drummers!
Mr. Joshua said as Mr. Dallas Moore would say this was a righteous rendering
He broke it. Absolutely AMAZING drum and full band number.

10:21PM The band is STILL JAMMING and tearing the roof off this place!

10:28PM Mr. James Intveld is here. Wonderful man with AWESOME Music.
We are learning about the Elvis Sun Records material.

10:36PM Mr. Dickey Lee is here, who is the last original Sun Records artist alive.
He wrote “She Thinks I Still Care” and others. He is playing right now, some of the
greatest music I have heard in a LONG TIME is here tonight.

10:44PM Mr. Big Sandy is here! I LOVE him in fact he was the first person I ran into when I
arrived in Memphis. Same hotel. He is playing a Carl Perkins song.

10:51PM Mr. Dale declared Memphis as “Ground Zero” for independent music, and before the Outlaw movement
Mr. Sam Phillips created true independence for local music.

10:55PM Mr. Ricky And Mr. Gunner Nelson are playing “milk Cow Blues”. Their father Ricky Nelson wrote the song
and Elvis had a hit with it.

11:00PM Mr. Robert Gordon has called up Sam Phillips family, to tell more stories and accept the 2018
Legend award winner Sam Phillips. His son accepted the award tonight. He is telling stories
about his father, who said the secret to Rock And Roll, is reaching deep down inside of you
and pull it out of your asshole.

11:07PM Mr. Chris Casello and Miss Brennan Leigh are now presenting The Ralph Mooney Award winner
and the winner is…..Chris Scruggs.

11:12PM Mr. Chris is THANKING so many REAL heroes of music. HE IS the real deal.

11:15PM As Mr. Dale is introducing all of the house band they are moving on to
award the venue of the year. There are SO MANY GREAT venues nationwide.
And the winner is….Sportmen’s Tavern.

11:20PM Mr. Jason Galaz is presenting Festival Of the Year Award with Miss Cheryl Desiree
and others. And the winner is……The New England Shake Up.

11:24PM Mr. James Riley is presenting Ameripolitan DJ of the year….and the winner is…
WB Walker!
11:28PM Mr Jim Heath AKA Reverend Horton Heat is now performing.

11:41PM Mr. James Intveld and Mr. Big Sandy are presenting the award for Western Swing Female.
And The Winner is…..Miss Sophia Johnson.

11:44PM Mr. Gunnar Nelson and Miss Katie from Asleep At The Wheel are now presenting the award for
Western Swing Male….And the winner is Mr. Billy Mata.

11:47PM Mr. Big Sandy and Miss Sandy Walker are presenting the Western Swing Group of the year
And the winner is…..The Carolyn Sills Combo.

11:57PM Miss Lara Hope and Mr. Sam Phillips Jr. are announcing the award Rockabilly Female
And the winner is…Miss Bailey Dee.

12:00PM miss Celine Lee and are presenting the Rockabilly Male award…and the winner is Mr. Al Dual.

12:00AM The Rockabilly Group of the year are The Go Getters.

12:10AM It is time for Mr. Dale to present the Master Award to Mr. Brian Setzer.