“Few groups have come as far in such a short period of time as The Steel Wheels.”
7:00 PM—The Oxford American is excited to welcome The Steel Wheels back to Little Rock as a special addition to our 2018-19 Concert Series! Doors open at 5:00 PM, with dinner and drinks available for purchase at that time.
Tickets are $20 (General Admission), $24 (Reserved), and $26 (Premium Reserved). Please take a look at this very important ticketing and seating information before purchasing your tickets (view reserved seating chart).
Hailing from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, The Steel Wheels are familiar with the traditions of folk music and how a string band is supposed to sound. In fact, they’ve been drawing on those steadfast traditions for more than a decade. Yet their name also evokes a sense of forward motion, which is clearly reflected in their latest album, Wild As We Came Here.
“I think we’ve always been able to write new songs with different landscapes. However it was really enjoyable for us, creatively and artistically, to depart from the straight-up acoustic sound that we’ve been known for,” says Trent Wagler, who plays guitar and banjo in the band and writes most of the material. “I’m excited to see what happens. There are fans out there who are ready for this and who have been waiting for us to do this.”
While on tour supporting Josh Ritter, the band forged a friendship with Sam Kassirer, who plays keyboards for Ritter on tour and has produced a number of his albums. While The Steel Wheels had been considering other producers and maybe recording in Nashville, they chose to follow their instincts all the way to rural Maine, where Kassirer owns a recording studio inside a renovated farmhouse from the 18th century. All four of the band members—Wagler, Eric Brubaker (fiddle), Brian Dickel (upright bass), and Jay Lapp (mandolin)—hunkered down for a week and a half to create Wild As We Came Here.
Then as now, The Steel Wheels’ style weaves through Americana and bluegrass music, folk and old-time music, and the acoustic poetry of the finest singer-songwriters. By incorporating percussion and keyboards into the sessions for the first time, Wild As We Came Here adds new textures to their catalog, as themes of discovery and perseverance run throughout the collection.