Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys

Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys

As Willie Nelson and Asleep at the Wheel embark on their Willie and the Wheel tour and their tribute to Western Swing Music, I thought you might enjoy this interesting article on Bob Wills, written by Ted Gioia, posted at:  He writes about Wills being a pioneer in merging jazz and country music styles:

While you’re waiting for the next milestone in cowboy jazz, you are advised to spend some time with the master of the genre: Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys. Wills, who was born at one minute before midnight on March 6, 1905 near Kosse, Texas, stands out as the leading star of the Western Swing movement that flourished in the post-WWII years.

Wills was one of the hottest acts in American music in the 1940s. At the close of World War II, his band was out-drawing Benny Goodman, Tommy Dorsey and other leading Swing Era stars. In 1946, Time magazine reported that Wills annual earnings were $340,000—a fabulous sum considering the minimum wage was forty cents during these post-war years.

You can read Mr. Gioia’s complete article here:

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