Last of the Breed

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This coming March 15, three legendary country & western performers -- Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, and Ray Price -- will perform at the Mabee Center in Tulsa, backed by the western swing band Asleep at the Wheel. The concert is part of a month-long, coast-to-coast "Last of the Breed" tour. (Sorry, See Dubya, Vegas is as close as they'll come to your neck of the woods.)

In the midst of the tour a CD called Last of the Breed will be released:

Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and Ray Price will release a double-disc album together on March 20 on Lost Highway Records. Titled Last of the Breed, the 22-song set was produced by Fred Foster. The recording sessions included contributions from the Jordanaires, steel guitarist Buddy Emmons and fiddler Johnny Gimble. Haggard, Nelson and Price have also scheduled tour dates, backed by Asleep at the Wheel, in New York, Nashville, Las Vegas, Detroit and Colorado Springs in March. The album includes two new songs and newly recorded versions of songs made famous by the three artists, including Price's 1959 hit, "Heartaches by the Number" (with Vince Gill on backing vocals). Kris Kristofferson provides backing vocals on "Why Me."

People my age will probably best remember Ray Price for his mellow 1970 crossover hit "For the Good Times," written by Kris Kristofferson. But he made his name with honky tonk hits in the '50s and '60s, and his band, the Cherokee Cowboys, launched the careers of Willie Nelson and Roger Miller, among others.

Here are a couple of YouTube videos from back in the day. First, his 1950s hit, "Crazy Arms,"

And here's a great uptempo western swing instrumental, "Silver Lake Blues." Dig those cowboy outfits and synchronized moves.

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5 Comments

DavidS said:

I truely think this is one that we'll certainly attend.
I got to see Willie back in the 80's, when we could fill the Convention Center

W. Author Profile Page said:

It's a bit disconcerting to me that so many people nowadays are unfamiliar with Ray Price's astounding body of work. "Heartaches by the Number," "Release Me," "Night Life," "Invitation to the Blues" and "Crazy Arms" are nearly American standards.

And I've heard from friends who've seen his shows that even at 80 years old, he's still in very good voice. Go get his recent "Time" album, which contains re-recordings of honky-tonk classics with original members of Nashville's "A Team" session players.

See-Dubya said:

I may just have to go to Oklahoma then!

I would hire a babysitter and drag the wife off to see any one of these singers and/or Asleep at the Wheel if they came out my way. All of them together sounds unmissable.

DGG said:

My wife and I saw Ray at the Ryman Oct '06 for our 30th - he was great though suffering with allergies. He sang 21 songs and an old guy there told me this was the 14th time he'd heard Ray and he thought it was the best performance yet. I'm on for Las Vegas!

Brody said:

Hello,

I just wanted to let your readers know about a contest we're holding on The 9513 to give away two free tickets to The Last Of The Breed concert taking place in Austin on March 17th. It coincides with the last weekend of SXSW, so a lot of people should be in town.

You can check out the details at The 9513.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on January 22, 2007 9:50 PM.

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