TVD Recommends:
Joe Ely at Chickie Wah Wah, 1/8

Due to overwhelming fan demand, the American singer, songwriter and guitarist whose music touches on honky-tonk, Texas Country, Tex-Mex, and rock ‘n’ roll returns to the Canal Street fine listening establishment.

Ely was born in 1947 and spent his formative years in Lubbock, Texas. In 1970, he formed the Flatlanders with fellow Lubbock musicians Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock. According to Ely, “Jimmie was like a well of country music. He knew everything about it. And Butch was from the folk world. I was kinda the rock ‘n’ roll guy, and we almost had a triad. We hit it off and started playing a lot together. That opened up a whole new world I had never known existed.”

In 1972, the band released their first and only album until 2002’s Now Again, but they have appeared together on each other’s albums. Since the band’s initial breakup just after their first album was cut, the three musicians have followed individual paths. Their most recent release is 2012’s The Odessa Tapes, which features unreleased tracks from the formative 1972 session.


Ely released his first, self-titled album in 1977. The following year, his band played in London, where he met the punk rock group, the Clash as they were becoming sensations. Impressed with each other’s performances, the two bands toured together. Ely sang backing vocals on the Clash single, “Should I Stay or Should I Go?”

His most recent recording is the critically acclaimed Satisfied At Last, which was released in 2011. “It reflects where I am and where I’ve been,” he explained. “The whole record takes a kind of journey. As you reflect on it, you’re just glad you made it. Everything adds up differently than you thought it would.”

Joe Ely V2 copy

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