Bob Wills

Radio Days

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Few performers in the 1930s understood the possibilities offered by radio better than Bob Wills. Along with his Texas Playboys, Wills was a constant presence on radio for nearly three decades, including doing a daily show for some 20 years for the General Mills subsidiary Red Star Milling on Tulsa's KVOO. This interesting set features one of those broadcasts from the mid-'30s, including the between-song narration (but without the commercials for Play Boy flour) and some blistering instrumentals from the band as well as vocal turns from Tommy Duncan, Bill Choate, and even Bob Wills himself. Wills & His Texas Playboys played the hyper-charged string band music that came to be known as Western swing, but with a decided improvisational edge, led by a triple-fiddle attack and, in later incarnations, driven by drums and electrified instruments. Listen to the near bagpipe impersonation the three fiddles create on "I'm Talkin' About You," the sheer propulsion of "Lone Star Rag," or the lovely grace of "Wednesday Night Waltz" to catch a glimpse of how exciting and versatile this band could be. The recording quality for this set is fair, with occasional minor dropouts, but the overall feel of this impressive band playing live is more than worth the price of admission.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1
0:37 Spotify
2
0:09 Spotify
3
2:58 Spotify
4
0:13 Spotify
5
3:39 Spotify
6
1:07 Spotify
7 0:08 Spotify
8 2:20 Spotify
9
2:33 Spotify
10 0:09 Spotify
11 2:59 Spotify
12
1:10 Spotify
13 3:21 Spotify
14
0:06 Spotify
15
2:19 Spotify
16 0:07 Spotify
17
2:57 Spotify
18 0:55 Spotify
19 2:10 Spotify
20 0:58 Spotify
21
3:23 Spotify
22 0:24 Spotify
23
3:09 Spotify
24 0:42 Spotify
25 2:17 Spotify
26 1:02 Spotify
27
2:46 Spotify
28
2:35 Spotify
29
0:17 Spotify
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