Asleep at the Wheel performs Sept. 16 at Jimmy Dean Music Festival

PLAINVIEW – Asleep at the Wheel headlines the third annual Jimmy Dean Music & Arts Festival on Sept. 16 at Harral Memorial Auditorium on Wayland Baptist University’s Plainview campus.

Joining the legendary ambassadors of Western swing music for more than 50 years as special guests will be Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys under the direction of Jason Roberts.

“One ticket for two legendary Western swing bands, that’s incredible. It just doesn’t get any better,” said Amber McCloud, who represents Wayland as the event co-chair. “General admission tickets are on sale now at”

Asleep at the Wheel’s Ray Benson has been an ambassador for Western swing music for half a century, introducing its irresistible sound to generation after generation. Benson remains the front man, but more than 100 musicians have passed through the band he affectionately refers to as “The Wheel.” Benson is the keeper of the vision and has been part of the process as the band has produced more than 30 albums, won 10 Grammy awards, and traveled literally millions of miles.

“The reason it’s popular is because we’ve had the greatest singers and players,” said Benson, who also notes, “I’m the reason it’s still together.”

Benson said that when someone joins the band, he always says, “Learn everything that’s ever been done, then put your own stamp on it.” He said he loves to hear how new band members interpret the music. “I’m just a singer and a songwriter, and a pretty good guitar player, but my best talent is convincing people to jump on board and play this music,” Benson said.

And playing the music is exactly what Benson and Asleep at the Wheel will be doing Sept. 16 to close out the third annual Jimmy Dean Music & Arts Festival.

Mike Melcher, who represents the community as another event co-chair, said Asleep at the Wheel represents an important cornerstone of American roots music, even though some members of the band and some members of their audiences represent a new generation. He noted that the same can be said about Jason Roberts and the Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys.

“Those attending the third annual Jimmy Dean Music & Arts Festival will know they have stepped into the world of Bob Wills as the Texas Playboys bring a nostalgic glow to longtime Wills fans and the joy of discovery to those who might not have been born when Bob Wills died,” Melcher said.

Go to to purchase tickets for Asleep at the Wheel with their special guests, Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys under the direction of Jason Roberts.