Looking to hire Asleep at the Wheel for a private party, fundraiser, gala, public concert, wedding, college, fair or festival worldwide?
BookingEntertainment.com makes it easy to get available dates, pricing and fees for booking Asleep at the Wheel.
Fill out an entertainment request form and a Asleep at the Wheel booking agent who can assist you in booking Asleep at the Wheel will get back to you to discuss booking Asleep at the Wheel for your event.
Want to talk about your event now? Give us a call at (212) 645-0555 and one of our booking agents will be happy help you immediately.
Our office is staffed from 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM EST, Monday - Friday.
Since the early '70s, Asleep at the Wheel has been the most important force in keeping the sound of Western swing alive. In reviving the freewheeling, eclectic sensibility of Western swing godfather Bob Wills, the Wheel earned enthusiastic critical praise throughout their lengthy career; they not only preserved classic sounds that had all but disappeared from country music, but were also able to update the music, keeping it a living, breathing art form. Typically featuring 8-11 musicians, the group has gone through myriad personnel changes (at last count, over 80 members had passed through their ranks), but 6'7" frontman Ray Benson has held it together for over three decades, keeping Asleep at the Wheel a viable recording and touring concern and maintaining their devotion to classic-style Western swing.
Singer/guitarist Benson was born Ray Benson Seifert and grew up listening to a variety of music in Philadelphia, especially jazz. He formed Asleep at the Wheel in Paw Paw, WV, in 1970, along with longtime friend Lucky Oceans (born Reuben Gosfield; steel guitar) and Leroy Preston (rhythm guitar). They soon added a female singer in Chris O'Connell, who was fresh out of high school. Initially, the group played straight-ahead country in local venues, but quickly switched to Western swing when they discovered the music through Merle Haggard (specifically his Bob Wills tribute album) and eclectic country-rockers Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen. In fact, Commander Cody helped the group sign with his own manager, Joe Kerr, who convinced them to move to San Francisco in late 1971. They subsequently added keyboardist Floyd Domino, and secured a residency at Berkeley's Longbranch Saloon. Praise from Van Morrison in a Rolling Stone article helped them land a record deal with United Artists, which released their debut album, Comin' Right at Ya, in 1973.
In 1974, Asleep at the Wheel relocated to the roots music haven of Austin, TX, and also switched labels to Epic. Their self-titled label debut appeared that same year, and their cover of Louis Jordan's "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie" became their first single to hit the country charts. Afterwards, they added fiddler Lisa Silver and trumpeter Bobby Womack, and hopped labels again to Capitol. 1975's Texas Gold was their breakthrough album, climbing into the country Top Ten and producing their only Top Ten hit on the country singles charts, "The Letter That Johnny Walker Read." That year they performed on the first non-pilot episode of Austin City Limits, and although they continued to experience personnel shifts, they turned out a string of excellent albums over the rest of the decade: Wheelin' and Dealin' (1976), The Wheel (1977), and Collision Course (1978), the latter of which featured their first Grammy winner in the instrumental cover of Count Basie's "One O'Clock Jump."
Asleep at the Wheel moved to MCA for 1980's Framed, but all was not well: founding member Lucky Oceans left the group that year, and Chris O'Connell took a leave of absence to start a family not long after. Plus, the group was heavily in debt, forcing them to work on commercials and movie soundtracks. The financial problems conspired to keep them off record for the next few years, and when they returned on Dot/MCA with a self-titled album in 1985, they were virtually ignored. Following the small-label release Pasture Prime later that year, Benson did some moonlighting as a producer, and soon managed to get a second shot with Epic. By now, O'Connell had returned, and the new lineup featured fiddler Larry Franklin, steel guitarist John Ely, pianist/accordionist Tim Alexander, saxophonist Mike Francis, bassist Jon Mitchell, and drummer David Sanger. This unit recorded the major comeback effort, Asleep at the Wheel 10, in 1987, which brought them back to the Top 20 of the country album and singles charts (the latter via "House of Blue Lights") for the first time in over a decade. Additionally, the album's "String of Pars" won them their second Grammy for Best Country Instrumental, and featured contributions from fiddle legend and onetime Texas Playboy Johnny Gimble. The 1988 follow-up, Western Standard Time, continued their momentum, winning another Best Country Instrumental Grammy for "Sugarfoot Rag."
In 1990, Asleep at the Wheel moved to Arista and recorded Keepin' Me Up Nights, which flopped in comparison to its two predecessors. Major personnel turnover ensued, with O'Connell leaving a second time, and Benson regrouped with Francis, Sanger, fiddler Ricky Turpin, bassist David Miller, and steel guitarist/dobroist Cyndi Cashdollar. They issued two albums on Liberty/Capitol, the acclaimed, guest-laden A Tribute to the Music of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys (1993; featuring the Grammy-winning instrumental "Red Wing") and The Wheel Keeps on Rollin' (1995). Their next major studio project, Ride With Bob, was released by DreamWorks in 1999 and featured fiddler Jason Roberts (a young relative of Johnny Gimble) and pianist/second fiddler Chris Booher. It was the group's second explicit tribute to Bob Wills, and it attracted even more positive attention than the first, winning multiple Grammys and drawing non-country collaborators like the Manhattan Transfer and Squirrel Nut Zippers. ~ Steve Huey, All Music Guide
As an experienced entertainment booking agency, Booking Entertainment agents represent buyers of big name entertainment, providing pricing fees and full turn key concert events for our clients. We are a full-service booking entertainment agency for clients hosting corporate events, galas, private events, fundraisers, corporate functions, college concerts, private parties and speaking engagements worldwide.
Booking Entertainment works to get the best possible booking fee and price for our clients while also providing the celebrity or big name entertainer with the level of professionalism and industry norms that they expect from an event run by a professional booking agency and production management company.
Booking Entertainment uses our agency / management relationships and over 20 years of production experience to help buyers of headline / top name entertainers and does not claim or represent itself as the exclusive agent, manager or management company for any of the artists on our site.
Fill out the form below and your assigned agent will contact you quickly to see how BookingEntertainment can best serve you and your clients.
This non-obligatory and confidential form was created for our booking agents to get a clear understanding of who you would like to book as well as your proposed date, budget and venue.
Our 20 years of agency / management relationships help you get the best possible price and ensures that your talent buying experience is handled with honesty and integrity. You can also talk to us about producing the entire musical portion of the event for one flat fee with no surprises...
Want to talk about your event now? Give us a call at (212) 645-0555 and one of our booking agents will be happy to help you immediately.
Our office is staffed from 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM EST, Monday - Friday.
Fields marked by asterisks (*) are required
NEED HELP? Please feel free to email us with questions at any time
"When you are looking to book big name entertainment for an event, there are a number of pop up booking agencies on the web that if they are reputable, simply book the acts and leave you to handle all of the responsibilities of producing the entertainment portion of your event. Our entertainment booking agents have been personally trained by me to ensure that the entire booking process and event production is handled flawlessly and with the personal touch that I make sure goes into every corporate event, private party or public concert that we handle. My reputation is on the line for every show we do, and I ensure that both our clients and the acts / celebrities that we book are treated to our unprecedented level of service.
Let our entertainment agent specialists show you how we can save you up to 30% on your production costs and why so many of our clients come back to our booking agency year after year to enjoy our hassle free service when they want to book big name entertainment for corporate events, private parties and public concerts worldwide."
CEO & President - Steve Einzig
"The first thing I do when I am planning my event for next year is call Steve at BookingEntertainment. Our event is at the Waldorf Astoria every year, and the team at BookingEntertainment delivers a perfect experience year after year. No matter what time we get in the room, BookingEntertainment makes it work."
- Hospital Fundraiser - New York - (Don Henley, Chicago, Hall & Oates, Melissa Etheridge, Sheryl Crow, Stevie Nicks, Natasha Bedingfield)
"They make corporate event planning a snap!! When we were looking for an entertainment agency while in the party planning stage of our event, BookingEntertainment.com was the only talent agency that we felt comfortable with. They delivered in a huge way. We loved dealing with them and the event was perfect."
- Private Client - Barbados - (Bon Jovi, Meat Loaf, Bryan Adams, Kenny Rogers)
"Our events with BookingEntertainment have been perfect. They saved us over $200,000 in costs that were needlessly spent in previous years."
- Fundraiser - Las Vegas - (Billy Joel, Stevie Nicks, Hall & Oates)
"BookingEntertainment is one of my favorite vendors. As the corporate meeting planner for a Fortune 500 company, my logistics sometimes incorporate more than 1000 people over several days of meetings and events. Year after year, the final evening concert is a SMASH!! With BookingEntertainment ensuring every last detail is attended to, I am free to relax and enjoy the show with my clients and colleagues."
- Fortune 500 Company - Dallas - (Don Henley, Bonnie Raitt, Penn & Teller)
"Booking Entertainment is a first-rate company that provides more than just booking services. From solid recommendations that fit the target audience to top-notch event production, Booking Entertainment truly delivers. I've been working with Steve Einzig and his staff for over two years on all of our events and highly value their professionalism. Once I have made the call, I know that I don't have to worry about the entertainment for the event. That kind of comfort and assurance is priceless."
- Corporate Event - Atlantic City and Baltimore (Lionel Richie, Donna Summer)