Music » Livewire

Wayne Hancock

With the Stardevils. Friday, January 30, at the Beachland Ballroom.

by

comment
If the fate of cowboy swing rested on singer-guitarist Wayne Hancock's shoulders alone, there'd still be nothing to worry about for a good long while. Many artists embrace a musical style, but Wayne "The Train" seems to have internalized his. A nasal vocal twang, just this side of Hank Sr.'s, and a song-crafting style cast in the mold of vintage Western swing -- with the periodic nod to rockabilly -- are Hancock's calling cards. Add a smokin' backup band that plays by the same rules, and you get a sound that "retro" doesn't quite do justice to.

Hancock, a thirtyish ex-Marine, made his musical bones as a teenager in rural Texas bars and, once out of the service, established himself in the early '90s Austin scene. He garnered good press for his singing in Chippy, a 1994 stage play set in West Texas, and debuted on CD to critical acclaim with 1995's Thunderstorms and Neon Signs. Hancock's command of the western lexicon made for material strong enough to stand alongside classics of the genre, rather than just echo them. His latest, Swing Time, is a "live" set recorded in Austin. Judging by the onstage company he keeps there, the excitement won't stop with the vocals when he hits town.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at [email protected].

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club


Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.


Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.


Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.