Austin, TX (January 22, 2021) — Austin City Limits (ACL) is proud to present the long-awaited debut of cult hero Ray Wylie Hubbard in a thrilling new hour. The ‘70s cosmic-country legend is currently enjoying one of the great second acts in music and he entertains with songs and banter, sharing tunes and tales from his legendary career. The installment premieres Saturday, January 23 at 8pm CT/9pm ET, as part of the iconic series Season 46. The episode will be available to music fans everywhere to stream online beginning Sunday, January 24 at 10am ET atpbs.org/austincitylimits. The broadcast, recorded in October 2020, reflects a rare no-audience taping due to the Covid-19 pandemic. With live music on hold, ACL continues to provide viewers a front-row seat to the best in performance. The program airs weekly on PBS stations nationwide (check local listings for times) and full episodes are made available online for a limited time at pbs.org/austincitylimits immediately following the initial broadcast. Viewers can visit acltv.com for news regarding future tapings, episode schedules and select live stream updates. The show’s official hashtag is #acltv.
When F. Scott Fitzgerald issued his classic conclusion ‘There are no second acts in American lives,’ he failed to envision the career of Ray Wylie Hubbard, a willing conspirator in the late seventies Cosmic Cowboy revolt that ushered in the mythical Outlaw era. Hubbard, alongside colleagues such as Willie Nelson and Jerry Jeff Walker, was a catalyst in the cultural upheaval that led to the peaceful coexistence of Lone Star music fans at opposite ends of the social and political spectrum of the time. Hell-bent for truth and texture in capturing the way outlaws live, the Texas treasure relaunched his career in the 1990s and has been recording critically-lauded work ever since. Legions of fans in his home state and beyond have requested an ACL appearance by Hubbard for years and he now kicks up some cosmic dust in this long-awaited set, amplified by first-class musicians including his son, guitarist Lucas Hubbard and longtime drummer Kyle Schneider, joined by ace Austin musicians Bukka Allen on keyboards and bassist Gurf Morlix.
“There’s no good excuse for why it took Ray Wylie to finally make his debut on Austin City Limits after 46 years,” offered ACL executive producer Terry Lickona, “but like a fine whiskey, some things just keep getting better with age. Ray Wylie is in his prime right now, and also like a fine whiskey, there’s no better antidote to a year-long pandemic!”
“I hope you’re ready for this,” teases Hubbard after opening with a pair of numbers from his 2006 release Snake Farm, including the title track, a dirty-blues anthem celebrating a Texas roadside attraction. “If this is the first time you’ve seen me perform, you’re probably a little bit nervous after those first two songs,” jokes Hubbard. Passion for the man whose outlier bona fides have made him a roadhouse saint hasn’t waned as he is revered by a new generation of performers; he explores recent songs written with Eric Church and Hayes Carll. Hubbard presents highlights from his recent, acclaimed major label debut on Big Machine Records, Co-Starring, which features an impressive array of guests, including Ringo Starr, Joe Walsh, Chris Robinson and Don Was, and showcases the new gem ”Rock Gods,” a salute to one of his own heroes, Tom Petty. Listen here.
Addressing ACL viewers, Hubbard remarks with a sly smile, “You might get the idea that I’m an acquired taste — so this song should weed you out.” The renegade poet closes the set with the swamp rocker “Mother Blues” from 2012’s The Grifter’s Hymnal – the story of a stolen Les Paul Gold Top, romances rooted in an afterhours gig, and the wisdom of keeping your gratitude higher than your expectations.
Ray Wylie Hubbard setlist:
Drunken Poet’s Dream
Fast Left Hand
Wanna Rock and Roll
Season 46 Broadcast Schedule:
January 9 Foo Fighters Rock Austin City Limits
January 16 The War And Treaty | Ruthie Foster
January 23 Ray Wylie Hubbard
January 30 The Best of Spoon
February 6 Texas Icons: Jerry Jeff Walker & Billy Joe Shaver
February 13 Allen Toussaint: New Orleans Legend
ACL’s Season 46 premiered in October with standout performances from 2021 Grammy nominee Rufus Wainwright, UK country-soul sensation Yola, rock and country trailblazers The Mavericks, acclaimed Austin standout Jackie Venson, salutes to late ACL legends John Prine and Stevie Ray Vaughan, a celebration of 50 years of Asleep at the Wheel and more.
Tune-in, log on, and let ACL be a trusted sidekick for entertainment during these challenging days. Viewers can visitacltv.com for news regarding live streams, future tapings and episode schedules or by following ACL on Facebook, Twitter, IG and TikTok. Fans can also browse the ACL YouTube channel for exclusive songs, behind-the-scenes videos and full-length artist interviews.
For images and episode information, visit Austin City Limits press room at http://acltv.com/press-room/.