FOTO: Mike Shore

Asleep At The Wheel (USA)

A slice of American music history awaits when the band Asleep At The Wheel take the stage at Tønder Festival. Led by guitarist, songwriter and singer Ray Benson, Asleep At The Wheel play western swing, a style of country music that arose in the 1920s in south western USA. This music is country flavoured with jazz swing and rhythmic drive. Western swing began as dance music with its many up-tempo numbers, the bands often big, comprising country and bluegrass musics’ instruments such as guitar, steel guitar, violin and mandolin plus drums, bass, saxophone and piano. This is the tradition Asleep At The Wheel has kept alive for over 50 years. The band started in1970 and has since travelled the world, released over 30 albums, won 10 Grammy Awards and been nominated for countless prizes. They have performed with Willie Nelson, Brad Paisley, Merle Haggard, The Avett Brothers and Lyle Lovett and others. On their Grammy-winning album Still The King (2015), Asleep At The Wheel pay homage to the legendary Bob Wills and his band The Texas Playboys, the original and greatest western swing band of the 1930s. Asleep At The Wheel’s most recent release is the album Half a Hundred Years from 2021. Their only Danish festival in 2024.