Editors’ Notes Five years (and thousands of miles) since his last studio record, Wayne “The Train” Hancock returns with his signature brand of “juke joint swing,” combining classic honky-tonk and Western swing with elements of blues, big band, rockabilly, and jazz. Hancock may not be the second coming of Hank, as reviews of his first few albums would have you believe, but he blows the dust off a great and ailing American art form. Actually, his genre-bending sound owes as much to Bob Wills and Ernest Tubb (heck, to Cab Calloway and Gershwin, even) as to Hank Williams, no matter how that nasal voice wraps itself around a yodel. The trombone and clarinet that kick off the album lend a trad-jazz kick to the lively title track, and when Hancock “calls out” each of his crack guitarists in turn, you can just feel the dance floor filling up. The rest is vintage Hancock at the top of his form, songs of booze, heartbreak, and the open road delivered with passion and not a shred of retro posturing. Recorded in just two and a half days and produced by the legendary Lloyd Maines, Tulsa feels as crackling and spontaneous as one of Hancock’s legendary shows. Which is not to say the vibe is relaxed: after more than ten years of 200+ days on the road, these boys could start a hillbilly dance riot in their sleep. Welcome back, Wayne.

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