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Arts & Culture

'Comin' Right At Ya'

Ray Benson is the leader of the country band 'Asleep at the Wheel' and has been touring for more than 40 years.
Bismeaux Productions
Ray Benson is the leader of the country band 'Asleep at the Wheel' and has been touring for more than 40 years.

Asleep at the Wheel has toured as country swing band for more than 40 years. Along the way, they picked up nine Grammys and played alongside musicians like Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson.

Ray Benson, a self-described "six-foot-seven hippie from Philadelphia," is an unlikely leader of a country group. The memoir "Comin' Right At Ya: How a Jewish Yankee Hippie Went Country, or, the Often Outrageous History of Asleep at the Wheel" (University of Texas Press/2015) tells the story of how Benson formed the band and the group's life on the road.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Benson and the memoir's co-writer David Menconi about Asleep as the Wheel's legacy in country music.

Asleep at the Wheel performs a holiday-themed concert, "Merry Texas Christmas Y'all," at the Carrboro Arts Center Thursday, December 17 at 8:00 p.m. and plays at the Greensboro Coliseum on Thursday, December 31 at 8:30 p.m.

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