Well that’s it. We knew when we first heard that Ray Wylie Hubbard had signed to the big evil Big Machine Records—the same Nashville-based label of Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, and Brantley Gilbert—that his days of being one of those cool, underground influence peddlers of Texoma music were finite. Since he was now shaking hands with Scott Borchetta, it would be drum loops, snap tracks, tractor rapping, and pop collaborations from here on out. It looks like all of that praise from Eric Church had really gone to Ray’s head.
Yeah, not so fast.
Instead, Ray Wylie has parleyed his many years of peddling mad influence in country and roots music into a collaborative album hosting a heavy dose of cool names. Called Co-Starring, it will be released on July 10th via Big Machine, and is preceded by the new song “Bad Trick” that itself sees Ringo Starr, Don Was, Joe Walsh, and Chris Robinson of The Black Crowes all show up to support Hubbard (listen below).
Other names that lend their services to the all-powerful and-knowing Wylie Llama include Ashley McBryde, Pam Tillis, Ronnie Dunn, Aaron Lee Tasjan, The Cadillac Three, Paula Nelson, Elizabeth Cook, Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown, Larkin Poe, and Peter Rowan.
The record comes after Ray Wylie Hubbard concluded a trilogy of records with his last three albums, and has seen his name recognition dramatically rise after co-writing the title track to Eric Church’s last record Desperate Man. A long-time songwriter who was more a regional hero and was known as the “Forgotten Outlaw” is now finally beginning to receive his due, and having so many others hop on board with him for his latest effort can only help.
Ray Wylie’s signing to Big Machine shouldn’t be entirely shocking if you’ve been paying attention to the doings of the label over the years. Ray Wylie Hubbard is one of many left field signings Scott Borchetta has done. Remember, it was Big Machine’s Valory Music Group imprint that released the big comeback record for The Mavericks from 2013 called In Time that went on to win Saving Country Music’s Album of the Year. The label also released the Latin country group’s followup, Mono in 2015. Big Machine also released the album Better Than Myself from Alex Williams in 2017.
And now they will be the label behind Ray Wylie Hubbard’s big, Music Row label debut … at the age 73.
Co-Starring is now available for pre-order.
1. “Bad Trick (feat. Ringo Starr, Don Was, Joe Walsh, Chris Robinson)
2. “Rock Gods” (feat. Aaron Lee Tasjan)
3. “Fast Left Hand” (feat. The Cadillac Three)
4. “Mississippi John Hurt” (feat. Pam Tillis)
5. “Drink Till I See Double (feat. Paula Nelson, Elizabeth Cook)
6. “R.O.C.K.” (feat. Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown)
7. “Outlaw Blood” (feat. Ashley McBryde)
8. “Rattlesnake Shakin’ Woman” (feat. Larkin Poe)
9. “Hummingbird” (feat. Peter Rowan)
10. “The Messenger” (feat. Ronnie Dunn and Pam Tillis)