ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
60°
Light Rain
H 66° L 63°
  • cloudy-day
    60°
    Current Conditions
    Light Rain. H 66° L 63°
  • rain-day
    65°
    Afternoon
    Light Rain. H 66° L 63°
  • rain-day
    63°
    Evening
    Rain. H 66° L 63°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest top stories

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

Asleep At the Wheel

Tuesday

Dec 18, 2018 – 8:00 PM

1050 A1A North
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082 Map

  • Asleep At The Wheel

More Info

Asleep At The Wheel: Can a wheel reinvent itself while it’s still rolling? Sounds like an impossible task -- but you never want to say “impossible” to Asleep at the Wheel, the famed western-swing, boogie, and roots-music outfit that’s, amazingly, still on the upswing. That’s saying something, too, considering the group’s been around for more than 37 years, turning out an incredible 25+ albums while playing an unrelenting schedule of one-nighters that would make a vaudevillian dizzy. “In terms of how many people we played for, what we accomplished, and how much money we made – well, we didn’t make any money, but we grossed a lot – ‘06 was absolutely our best year ever,” says Wheel founder and front man Ray Benson with a chuckle. And even as the Wheel rolled on, the reinvention had begun. You could see and hear it in their live shows, where new vocalist Elizabeth McQueen invited comparison with the classic female vocalists of the band’s earlier era, and fiddler-singer Jason Roberts gave the band a second male lead voice to complement Benson’s immediately identifiable baritone. These days, the reinvented Wheel is also rolling down a couple of new avenues. One involves to the critically acclaimed musical play, A Ride With Bob, which stars Benson as himself -- encountering the ghost of Bob Wills on a tour bus – Roberts as the young Wills, and McQueen as Minnie Pearl and other famed entertainment figures, with the rest of the band members featured as well. Originally designed as a one-off celebration of Wills’ 100th birthday in ’05, A Ride With Bob quickly took on a life of its own and, notes Benson, “it’s absolutely a part of what we do now.” Another success has been the adaptation of the Wheel’s repertoire for pops symphony. Performances with Dallas, Austin, Fort Worth & Amarillo symphonies have drawn record crowds. The Wheel’s new look is also spotlighted in a new disc – called, appropriately enough, Reinventing the Wheel. The 12-cut celebration of American – particularly Southwestern – music features guest appearances by gospel’s Blind Boys of Alabama (with a splendid reworking of the old Wills tune “The Devil Ain’t Lazy”) and banjoist Rolf Sieker, along with lead vocals by McQueen and Roberts as well as Benson, whose voice has been synonymous with Asleep at the Wheel for decades. “I carried the load for many, many years, but I just wanted to have a band, as opposed to Ray Benson and Asleep at the Wheel,” Benson explains. “That’s what we had in the ‘70s – a band, a revue kind of deal, which was the whole concept. But trying to replace a Chris O’Connell was very difficult. And then Elizabeth walks up, and boom – here’s my girl singer. And then I kept pushing Jason, both through the play and through the band, saying, `Man, you’ve got talent. You can sing. You’ve got the golden ear – just apply it to your singing and songwriting.’” Roberts, who’s been the Wheel’s full-time fiddler since early ’96, welcomed the opportunity to be a part of the revamped, revue-style Wheel. He even landed one of his own compositions on the new disc. Called “Am I Right (or Amarillo),” it is, he says, “kind of a little tip of the hat to Loretta Lynn.” “I think everybody got a chance to put their two cents in, and bring to the table what they had, ” he adds, referring to the process that led to Reinventing the Wheel. “God bless Ray Benson for allowing us to do that. We all know that it’s his band, and he doesn’t have to do anything he doesn’t want to do.” Adds McQueen, “One of the things about Asleep at the Wheel is that they always have great musicians. That’s what they’re known for. So for them to ask me to join and then to keep me in the band, and to let me step out a little more and stand in the shoes of Chris O’Connell and Maryann Price, who were amazing singers – that’s an incredible honor. It’s above and beyond my greatest expectations.” So, whether your next encounter with Asleep at the Wheel is at a dance or concert, via the new disc, or at a live production of A Ride with Bob, you’ll be witnessing something very special -- a band that’s not only been entertaining audiences with its own genre-busting music for nearly four decades, but also a group that’s never been afraid to try something new -- including a reinvention, inspired by the past, that rolls joyously toward a long and shining future. –John Wooley

The Latest News Headlines

  • A loaded gun was brought inside a Pittsburgh elementary school Monday, officials said. >> Watch the news report here WPXI-TV reports that the weapon wasn't found until after school, when another student told a bus driver that someone had a gun. Children are not required to go through the metal detectors at Pittsburgh Faison Elementary School in Homewood, but a district spokesperson told WPXI that there are going to be changes in security measures starting Tuesday morning. >> Read more trending news  The kindergarten student had the loaded gun, with the safety on, in his backpack, inside his locker. Officials told WPXI that parents got a notice from the district's phone system. WPXI is working to find out if the child's parents will be charged.
  • Razor blades have been found under the handles of shopping carts at a Walmart store in North Carolina, police said. >> Watch the news report here The blades were found at the store in Siler City, about 35 miles south of Greensboro, WSOC-TV reported. Two people reportedly have been hurt. Siler City police are seeking two people of interest, both described as white men in their 30s. Police said the men were seen in a tan Chevrolet Suburban or GMC SUV. >> Read the full descriptions here >> See the surveillance photos here – The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.
  • A skyride malfunctioned Monday night at SeaWorld San Diego, initially stranding nine adults and seven children – including an infant. Here are the latest updates: Update 11:26 p.m. PST: Rescue workers have saved all 16 people who were trapped on the Bayside Skyride at SeaWorld San Diego, the San Diego Fire Department tweeted late Monday. >> See the tweet here Original story: A rescue is underway at SeaWorld San Diego after a skyride malfunctioned Monday night, initially stranding nine adults and seven children – including an infant. >> See a photo from the scene here >> Read more trending news  As of 10:30 p.m. PST, crews had rescued 14 people from the Bayside Skyride, which stalled when heavy winds 'tripped a circuit breaker' more than three hours earlier, KSWB reported. Two people were still trapped on the ride's gondolas, the San Diego Fire Department said. >> See the tweet here KSWB said some of the gondolas were over Mission Bay when the ride stopped working. Those trapped were 'lowered by harnesses & rescued by [San Diego Lifeguards] boats,' the Fire Department tweeted. Read more here.
  • Four days after the announcement of a series of executive actions to fund his signature border wall, President Donald Trump’s administration still needs to fill in the details on his plans to shift over $6.6 billion from the Pentagon and Treasury Department into funding border security, as members of Congress continue to wonder if the move will dig into their local military base construction projects. On Capitol Hill, lawmakers and their staffs were awaiting guidance on where the Pentagon would look for money in the $3.6 billion sought by the President in his emergency declaration from military construction projects, which was already the subject of new lawsuits. “Congress has not enacted any emergency legislation even remotely related to border wall construction, and thus the President’s reallocation of funds is unlawful,” read a suit filed against the President and Pentagon by several environmental groups. In a letter to the Acting Secretary of Defense, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) asked for a breakdown of which projects would be put on hold – as under the ‘national emergency’ law used by the President, the Pentagon would make those decisions – not the Congress. Congress approved $10.3 billion for military construction in Fiscal Year 2019 – the $3.6 billion sought by the President would be more than one-third of that amount – which has drawn expressions of concern from lawmakers. As Kaine noted in his letter, the move to shift money from military construction comes at a time when the Pentagon already was having to deal with hurricane damage at two major domestic bases – Camp Lejeune for the Marines in North Carolina, and Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida. Tyndall was seriously damaged by Hurricane Michael in 2018 – and despite support for rebuilding the base, Congress has not yet acted on extra money for the Pentagon – or on broader hurricane relief for those hit in Florida and Georgia. During the partial government shutdown, Democrats in the House approved a bill which had $12.1 billion in disaster aid, both for hurricanes and wildfires – but that bill does not seem to be on the agenda in the U.S. Senate at this point. @DrNealDunnFL2 Dr Dunn, we are hearing here in the Panhandle that Trump is going after Tyndall rebuilding money for his wall. Please don’t let this happen! No Tyndall would be catastrophic to our area. Please help! — Billy Shears (@BillyShears9) February 14, 2019 The Commandant of the Marine Corps said over the weekend that he needs $3.5 billion just for repairs at Camp LeJeune from damage caused by Hurricane Florence in September of 2018 – which is equal to the figure of how much in military construction the President wants to shift into a border wall. Earlier this month, Air Force officials said they planned to spend $3 billion to rebuild Tyndall, which was flattened by Hurricane Michael in October of last year. House Democrats say they plan to hold a hearing as soon as next week to get a better idea on what military construction projects the Pentagon wants to scrap – in order to move money to the wall. Also still unclear is the legal underpinnings for two other moves announced last week by the White House, where the President would move money from a Treasury Department drug forfeiture fund, as well as money from a Pentagon anti-drug account – into a border wall.
  • JEA employees should expect to see some soggy carpets and heavy-duty drying equipment when they get to work Tuesday. An internal communication sent to employees says nine floors in the 19-story tower have experienced areas of flooding, in connection to several different issues. JEA says an under-counter water heater on the 8th floor failed on Sunday, flooding that break room and causing problems all the way down to the second floor. The water has soaked ceiling tiles, cabinets, and boxes in copy rooms and surrounding spaces. On Monday, JEA says a water supply line to the ice machine on the 14th floor failed, flooding that break room and surrounding areas. JEA says that leak caused damage to the 12th floor as well, although it appears the 13th floor was spared. A third issue happened at the Customer Center lobby, where there was a water leak from the HVAC system that damaged a ceiling tile. It was removed and will be replace when they are done handling the Tower, according to JEA. JEA Managing Director and CEO Aaron Zahn tweeted that JEA service will continue. JEA says no employees are displaced by this flooding, because it is largely around break rooms. Employees are cautioned to expect soggy carpets, fans drying some areas, and equipment to extract water in others. They will try to minimize the impact of the equipment, but say there will be extra noise. This comes as JEA considers bids for a new headquarters building. When this process started, the driving factors for seeking a new location were that the current building was too large and was in need of substantial repairs. The Board of Directors has three bids under consideration, Lot J by TIAA Bank Field, Kings Avenue Station on the Southbank, and West Adams Street by the County Courthouse. The Board will make a selection in April, but constructing and handing over the facility is expected to take more than two years to do. WOKV has asked JEA for more information about the state of the Tower and extent of repairs needed. We will update you as that information comes in.

The Latest News Videos