Liz Thomas gives her thoughts on “Co-Starring Too”, the second album from Ray Wylie Hubbard for Big Machine Records featuring a whole host of big name partners
Following the huge success of ‘Co-Starring’ released in 2020, Ray Wylie Hubbard’s ‘Co- Starring Too’ seems a bit daunting. But with friends like Steve Earle, Willie Nelson, Ringo Starr and Ann Wilson lined up ready to go it would have been rude not to, right?
‘Co-Starring Too’ is laden with incredible artists and shines through as one of the most anticipated albums of the year so far. Lyrics that drag you in to the soul of one of the finest country musicians of the decades.
For someone who never wanted to be “mainstream” Nashville, Ray Wylie Hubbard scored a huge record deal at 73 years old, with Big Machine Records backed by Scott Borchetta and is now releasing his second album in two years.
Starting off with Willie Nelson in ‘Stone Blind Horses‘, Hubbard lures you into false sense of security, thinking its going to be smooth soulful songs all the way through. But for anyone who knows Ray will know that’s never going to happen, and he certainly kicks it up a few notches as you make your way from song to song.
‘Stone Blind Horses‘ is a mournful duet, almost a redemption song, with a great, traditional country vibe running through it. Lyrics about Heaven and what’s ‘above the yonder’ makes it seem like a song for the fallen, looking for forgiveness and with excellent guitar work and a chorus you can’t help but sing along to as the song goes on.
‘Hellbent for Leather‘ features Steve Earle and goes back to the gritty sound that you’ll find on all of Ray’s albums. Singing about leaving the ‘City of Angels’ and making his way back to his roots and an easier way of life. With Steve Earle lending his voice to the gruffness of the song, it certainly gets your feet tapping after a subtle build up.
‘Till My Wheels Fall Off‘ features Wade Bowen, Randy Rogers and Cody Canada, it tells the tale of how determined a man can be to heed a woman’s call. With great vocals and guitar work carrying some brilliant bluesy undertones, ‘Till My Wheels Fall Off‘ will have anyone nodding their head along to this track.
With decades of experience Ray Wylie Hubbard has still got a huge love for life and has crossed paths with some very unusual, interesting characters. With a funky beat and a gritty soul he has once again made for some incredible songs and an album well worth listening to.
Ray Wylie Hubbard – Co-Starring Too – Track Listing
1. Stone Blind Horses (ft. Willie Nelson)
2. Groove (ft. Kevin Russell and the Shiny Soul Sisters)
3. Only a Fool (ft. The Bluebonnets)
4. Hellbent for Leather (ft. Steve Earle)
5. Naturally Wild (ft. Lzzy Hale and John 5)
6. Fancy Boys (ft. Hayes Carll, James McMurtry, Dalton Domino)
7. Texas Wild Side (ft. The Last Bandoleros)
8. Till My Wheels Fall Off (ft. Wade Bowen, Randy Rogers, Cody Canada)
9. Pretty Reckless (ft. Wynonna Judd, Jaimee Harris, Charlie Sexton, and Gurf Morlix)
10. Ride or Die (ft. Ringo Starr, Lucas Hubbard, Steve Lukather, Eliza Gilkyson, Ann Wilson)
11. Desperate Man (ft. Band of Heathens)
Photos – David McClister