West Texas. Rural and rugged, the area has inspired some of the most striking American roots music of the past 70 years. Its native sons include Buddy Holly, Terry Allen, Waylon Jennings, Bob Wills, and the Flatlanders — a roster of country singers, western swing pioneers, and rock & roll originators whose songs affected an entire nation, even as they nodded to the artists’ windswept stomping grounds. Decades after those songwriters sang the praises of West Texas, a new group of musicians have begun proudly carrying the torch, creating music that’s both regionally-inspired and universal.


The Panhandlers aren’t your typical hometown heroes. Separately, the band’s four members — Josh Abbott, John Baumann, William Clark Green, and Flatland Cavalry’s Cleto Cordero — are acclaimed songwriters and road-tested frontmen in their own right. Together, they’re a true powerhouse representing some of Texas’ most beloved musical exports, rolling their talents into a band whose homegrown country music revisits and revises the classic influence of West Texas. Tracked live to analog tape by producer Bruce Robison, the group’s self-titled debut is a modern record for old souls — a record written by contemporary Texas-based musicians and recorded in the old-school, straight-to-tape spirit of their 1960s and ’70s influences.


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