Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys: Twin Guitar Special
Twin Guitar Special
Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys
The Essential Bob Wills: 1935-1947 (Columbia Legacy 48958)
Son Lansford (bass), Al Stricklin (piano), Louis Tierney (fiddle), Gene Tomlins (drums).
Composed by Eldon Shamblin and Leon McAuliffe.
Recorded: Dallas, February 24, 1941
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
This performance, coming at almost the same moment that Charlie Christian was recording "Air Mail Special," shows that Benny Goodman wasn't the only major bandleader of the day who understood the potential of electric guitar. Bob Wills is often remembered for his endearing "Western Swing" classics, but he also played an important role in establishing the guitar as a key component of jazz and country bands. Of course, Eldon Shamblin and Leon McAuliffe are doing the heavy lifting here, and clearly deserve a tip of the cowboy hatónot to mention more recognition in the music history books. The mixture of electric guitar and steel guitar with Louis Tierney's fiddle works like a charm. This is one of the great combo sounds in mid-century American music.
Reviewer: Ted Gioia