BIG JIM WHEELER & WHEELS OF FIRE
Big Jim Wheeler has been called 'a throwback to the future' and is arguably the best-kept secret in American music. He hails from both the Adirondacks of upstate New York and the Blue Ridge Mountains of South Carolina. Through his many travels he has pleased audiences with his deep voice and dramatic singing style from Illinois to Istanbul and from Maine to Madagascar while serving his country in the U.S. Navy.
His many friends, fans and admirers include top performers such as the late Roscoe Gordon, Vassar Clements, Peter Rowan, academy award winning director Jonathan Demme, who recently hired Jim to appear as a featured extra in his new remake of The Manchurian Candidate with Denzel Washington, blues man James Cotton, and many others, several of whom he has shared the stage with. He has since starred in Ric Pantale's independent short film, "The Monkey's Paw" and sings the theme song which was penned by band mates and long time friends, Billy and Muddy Roues.
In 1994 he combined forces with the Roues Brothers to develop an original sound and style of music based on their mutual love of Western music, movies, T.V. and vintage Americana. To that end, they assembled a repertoire that included Robert Mitchum's BALLAD OF THUNDER ROAD, Johnny Western's PALADIN, Jimmy Dean's BIG BAD JOHN, and Roy Roger's GHOST RIDERS IN THE SKY. They didn't stop there. They started covering their favorite classic country from Hank Williams to Hank Snow, Johnny Horton to Johnny Cash and crossing the spectrum from Earnest Tubb to Tennessee Ernie Ford. With the addition of original songs penned by the Roues Brothers and Big Jim himself they captured the spirit of their heroes and predecessors and the picture was almost complete. All that was missing was the rest of the band.
To compliment Big Jim's deep baritone, Billy's twangy electric guitar and mandolin and Muddy's stand up bass and rack-held harmonica they decided to add long time collaborator and friend, Gary Solomon on acoustic guitar and Bill Rankin on drums. WHEELS OF FIRE was born!
With the enthusiastic support of legendary fiddler, Vassar Clements, the band entered the studio and emerged with a recording of a number of original songs along with a selection of some of the above mentioned cover tunes. Besides Vassar's fiddle, long time pedal steel journeyman, Bucky Baxter, lent his skills to several tracks as well. The result is the band's debut CD, "Goin' Back".
BIG JIM WHEELER & WHEELS OF FIRE put on an exciting 'must see' live show. They have been playing to enthusiastic audiences for several years now, always leaving their fans shouting for more. The band is hot and Big Jim has been described as, "Bigger than life." Come on in stranger, and see for yourself.
What the critics say about Goin' Back;
"This is honest, full-bodied country music, well written, sung and played by guys who aren't famous (yet), but who have the heart, soul, chops and guts to shake you out of the stupor induced by too much commercial country radio." Nick Plakias online review of "Goin' Back"
"This is real country music played the way real country music should be played." Paul Baines 'Let There Be Country' WFDU-FM
For further information and bookings contact;
Upsouth Recordings PO Box 34 West Nyack NY 10994
Phone (845) 358-8672 Mobile (845) 596-1512 E-mail rouesong@AOL.com