Grammy Award-Winner Jason Roberts Launches New Band
After 19 years with Asleep at the Wheel, two Grammys, and three Hall of Fame inductions as an individual, fiddler Jason Roberts has stepped out to front the Jason Roberts Band. Roberts released his latest CD, That's My Home, today.
With Roberts on lead vocals, fiddle and mandolin, the Jason Roberts Band reflects several genres and features well-known country, Western Swing and jazz musicians like Rick McRae, longtime guitarist for newly-retired George Strait. Other players include steel guitarist Johnny Cox, who's played with Vince Gill and Connie Smith; country music veteran Albert Quaid on bass; and drummer and vocalist Michael Morris.
"I think only Bob Wills himself could make me more thrilled with this line-up," said Roberts, referring to King of Western Swing. "It's an honor to have had such great experiences with Asleep at the Wheel and now to share the stage with world-class players like these guys."
No stranger to high-profile gigs and accolades himself, Roberts is an inductee of the Texas Western Swing Hall of Fame (Austin), Western Swing Society Hall of Fame (Sacramento), and Western Swing Music Society of the Southwest Hall of Fame (Oklahoma City).
Fans and venue owners have enthusiastically embraced the new band. "The Jason Roberts Band has a uniquely Texan sound that you didn't know you were missing and now have to hear again and again," said Sara Tays, a fan in Austin. Craig Copeland, owner of Lil' Red's Longhorn Saloon in Fort Worth said, "Jason and the boys absolutely mesmerized the crowd. These guys are simply fantastic!"
On his latest CD, That's My Home, Roberts was committed to minimal engineering and the "live, in the room" sound of recordings from the 1930s. "That's My Home spans straight-ahead country and Western Swing to jazz and big band. Armed only with instruments and microphones, I wanted to give a nod to the sound and spirit of my heroes," said Roberts. "On some of these tracks, like Avalon, we just clustered around a mic and went after it."