Ely Band: Joe Ely (vocals, acoustic guitar); Teye (acoustic guitar, background vocals); Jesse Taylor (guitar); Lloyd Maines (steel guitar, background vocals); Joel Guzman (accordion); Gary Herman (bass, background vocals); Rafael O'Malley Gayol (drums, percussion).
Recorded live at Antone's Roadhouse, Austin, Texas.
Ever since he made his debut with the legendary Flatlanders in the early '70s, Joe Ely has been a charter member of the Lubbock Mafia--a band of renegade singer-songwriters whose ranks include Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, and Jimmie Dale Gilmore. For all his talents as a gifted composer, Ely's talents truly shine through in a live setting (just ask the Clash and Bruce Springsteen, who've toured or shared a stage with the Texan).
Throughout his career, Ely has always incorporated Tex-Mex flavor into his music, as is apparent throughout LIVE @ ANTONE'S. Aided by flamenco guitarist Teye and accordion player Joel Guzman, Ely infuses sweeping Latino nuances all over numbers like Tom Russell's "Gallo del Cielo" and his own "Nacho Mama."
Elsewhere, this Texan and his crack back-up band fill the rest of their set with tales begging to me made into films, such as Ely's fictional escapades with an outlaw (a sweeping "Me And Billy The Kid") and a Lone Star version of Romeo and Juliet (the two-steppin' "Ranches And Rivers"). Also noteworthy are electrifying covers of Robert Earl Keen ("The Road Goes On Forever"), Gilmore ("Dallas"), Butch Hancock ("Road Hawg") and Buddy Holly ("Oh Boy!").
CMJ (6/12/00, p.33) - "...A tough-rocking mix of country, folk and Tex-mex....featuring Ely classics such as 'Road Hawg', and covers of songs by the likes of Robert Earl Keen and Tom Russell."
No Depression (5-6/00, pp.124-5) - "...[A] charismatic live performer....[the album] offers a generous helping of songs...including [some] never released before....also including the hometown Austin crowd...which inspires him to new heights..."
Mojo (Publisher) (11/00, p.102) - "...Confirms that he is one of the great perfromers of our time....serving up old faves...and a bevy of new Ely songs..."