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HoustonWells
NEWS   Houston Wells
Then & Now: From Joe Meek To New Zealand (2 CD)
Release Date: 14 March 2008
Release Numbers: JASCD 475/6
Available from: Jasmine Records
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Biography by Paul Hazell (used with his permission)
The Early Years – A Country Singer in the Making


Houston Wells first saw the light of day in Northumberland, England where he was born Andrew Smith, not far from Newcastle Upon Tyne. He enjoyed a happy childhood and grew to love the outdoors through his father, who nurtured in him a love of nature and took him on fishing trips. Not surprisingly, he grew up with an ambition to work in the outdoors and tried driving earth movers and logging – as it turned out with a “return ticket” for later in life in both cases – before joining the army and eventually the merchant navy.

A stint on the SS Iberia eventually saw him living for a time in Canada, where by the late 1950s he had settled in Powell River, about one hundred miles North of Vancouver. There, he worked as a logger and developed his love of country music. His inspiration as a singer came from such names as Slim Whitman, Jim Reeves, Johnny Cash and Hank Locklin. The possessor of a rapidly maturing and tuneful voice, the young ex-seaman took to singing in bars whenever the opportunity arose.

Canada, of course enjoys a long and rich tradition of country and folk music influences that has produced such esteemed names as Hank Snow, Wilf Carter, George Hamilton IV and latterly Gordon Lightfoot and Ann Murray. The young man absorbed the local music and continued to perform whenever his spare time allowed.

The life in Canada was short-lived though, as Houston’s wife and children elected to stay in the UK when the Canadian period began. So, in 1959 Houston moved on, travelling around by Greyhound bus and initially stopping over with relatives in Detroit before sailing back to England on The Corinthia. The marriage did not last however and the young, newly single Andrew Smith settled in Wickford, Essex where his parents and brother were living. He took a job driving a truck for a boss based in nearby Rayleigh and listened to a lot of country music as he drove up and down the length of England. Houston recalls,

“Of all the songs I heard on the radio back then two particularly made an impression on me. One was Jim Reeves’ ‘He’ll Have To Go’ and the other was Hank Locklin’s ‘Please Help Me I’m Falling’. Little did I realise then that within a short time I would be working with both these country superstars! It makes me wonder if life’s already lined up for you”

The move to Essex was fortuitous, as living not too many miles away in the Southend-On-Sea area were four young lads collectively known as The Coasters, who were soon to play a major part in Andrew Smith’s life! The Coasters had been formed by guitarist Pete Willsher and featured Brian Gill on bass, Norman Hull on rhythm guitar and Peter Nye on drums. They specialised in playing instrumental pieces and were well known around the Southend and Leigh-on-Sea area, where they often invited young would-be vocalists to sing a song or two. In a way, a kind of pre-digital forerunner of karaoke!

It was one night at the Elms Hotel in Leigh-on-Sea that Andrew Smith volunteered to sing a couple of numbers with The Coasters. The boys realised immediately that here was someone who was a lot more than just another lad who could hold a tune. Here was a good looking young man who within a few bars held the audience in the palm of his hand. What is more he could hit and hold some impressively powerful notes. From that night on it was Andrew Smith & The Coasters and over the ensuing months they carved out a musical niche for themselves in a growing area spreading out from Southend and the popularity of their gigs made them wonder if there might be a chance they could record.

Brian Gill was an electrical engineer and he constructed a basic home studio so that the group could make a demo tape. Pretty soon, they had cut “China Doll” / “This Song Is Just for You”. That recording found its way to London where it landed on the desk of Terry McGrath of Southern Music. Impressed by what he heard, McGrath asked Andrew to allow him to place it and very shortly afterwards, the boys received an invitation from the much exalted producer Joe Meek to attend his famous studio at Holloway Road in North London. Houston recalls today that their first impression was that they had been unceremoniously shunted into a backroom store, ankle-deep in cables, plugs and tapes. Then it occurred to them that this was the actual studio where all the famous recordings were made!

Meek was impressed with Andrew and the boys. It later emerged that although he was renowned for his pop and rock’n’roll productions, he harboured a secret love for country music and was delighted to have a country act on his books. However, he already had other groups signed up and, in particular, had in mind that The Outlaws could provide perfectly good backings for Andrew’s voice. He broke the news to the young lead singer. He would sign up Andrew but not the group. This bombshell did not go well with Andrew who insisted that he would only record with The Coasters. The resultant compromise was that Meek would record Andrew with The Coasters but only Andrew would be under contract. Meek would pay Andrew and he would have to share his income with the band.

The second surprise was that the recordings would not be released as being backed by The Coasters as there was already a popular American group by that name. Also, it was decided that Andrew Smith did not sound much like the name of a country singer. So it was that Houston Wells And The Marksmen came into existence as a Joe Meek act! The day that Houston signed to Meek was preserved for posterity by the photograph shown in this booklet of Meek holding his gun on Houston, as if compelling him to sign!

Interestingly, a 45rpm copy of that original demo has recently surfaced and we are hoping that it might respond positively to some tender loving care by our mastering team with a view to one day sharing it with the public on a future release.

In The Limelight

The first single was a studio cut of the Hank Locklin hit that had formed one side of the demo disc. “This Song Is Just For You” was coupled with the Pete Willsher number “Paradise” and it was released in September 1962. The former track is included on CD1 of this set and showcases the power and range of Houston’s voice. It did well in the UK and enjoyed even more success in Ireland. It served to gain them some much-needed publicity and before long the boys were sporting glitzy country style shirts made up by Pete Willsher’s mum! A similar level of success was achieved by the second single, a cover of the Jerry Wallace hit “Shutters And Boards” which sported Meek’s own composition “North Wind” on the flip side.

Whilst Meek’s musical brilliance is unquestioned, his choice of single “A” sides frequently has been! “North Wind” was universally acclaimed as a great song with a superb production and bound to succeed. However, Meek chose to make it the “B” side, which meant that it received much less airplay. Consequently both Houston and many of his followers have always believed that they missed out on a potential hit by not having “North Wind” as an “A” side. You can make up your own mind as “North Wind” is featured in this compilation.

Meek chose “Only The Heartaches” as the “A” side of the third single, so his taste was not so bad – this was the one that made Houston Wells a really hot name. A country song with a western feel, released just as the Liverpool sound was taking off, one might not have expected the song to sell but, sell it did! It went into the pop charts in the UK and Ireland and won them many major shows, TV and radio appearances and subsequently led to concert tours. More and more the boys went out on the road and demand grew for new recorded product.

To ensure that Meek had plenty of material from which to choose future releases he had the boys record numerous tracks. That way, should the tours take the group away, Meek could still ensure a constant stream of new releases for his public. He would often move the boys on to more songs during recording sessions, promising to “finish them off later”.

Through all this, two things became apparent that surprised and frustrated Houston. Firstly, he noticed that as the records were released, his voice often sounded higher than it actually was. Also the backings did not sound as discussed with Meek. Houston told me,

“The basic tracks would sound fine in the studio but then, when we heard them on record they didn’t sound the same and my voice sounded much higher than it really was”

In fact, what Houston did not realise at the time was that many of the tapes had been speeded up after recording but before the records were mastered and pressed and frequently, the productions had not been “finished” as Meek had promised. With this release, you can hear many of the tracks at the speed they were recorded, with the backings remixed to reflect the original intentions of Houston and Meek. This will be the first time these mixes have ever been heard outside the studios.

Secondly, Houston received no money and pretty soon was borrowing a suit from his father and a car from a friend because he could not afford to get to gigs and recording sessions on his depleted savings!

The contract I had with the Meek organisation stated that I was entitled to one penny for every record sold. I still have the contract! With all the records we moved, that should have come to a quid or two, however I’ve yet to see a penny from them!”

This gave rise to numerous rumours that Houston was taking full pay and keeping the group on the bread line!

“We were on the bread line”, he says, “but it wasn’t my fault. I guess I was naïve – it would be different if we were going through that today. I was as green as grass back then, now I’ve got all my buttons on!”

A third frustration that only became apparent in later years was the number of tracks recorded by Meek that never saw the light of day. Whether Meek never got around to finishing the productions or whether he had plans for later albums we will never know. Houston takes up the story,

“There were a lot of tracks that never saw release through the Meek years – and it wasn’t because they weren’t good enough. For instance, I recall that we did “Tennessee Stud” at the request of the TV star Richard Greene, who was famous as Robin Hood. He invited us to go shooting pheasants with him at his country home and it emerged that he was a lover of horses. “Tennessee Stud” was one of his favourite songs.

Then later I recorded the delightful “Just For Old Time’s Sake” with The Masters. It always frustrated me that so many tracks never came out on record. In fact, I have re-recorded “Just For Old Time’s Sake” for this album. “We’ll Remember You” was another favourite of mind – a tribute to Jim Reeves – that didn’t get released on record, although it did see the light of day briefly later on an early CD compilation. But there were many more and now no-one seems to know where those master tapes are. Technically, they now belong to me so if anyone knows of their whereabouts I’d be grateful to them for letting me know”

At The Top

Sales of the records blossomed, against all the trends of pop music of those times and Houston Wells & The Marksmen appeared on all the major pop TV shows and headlined their own major concerts. They also embarked on some impressive concert tours, supporting such names as The Beatles, Billy J Kramer & The Dakotas, Jim Reeves, Johnny Cash and Hank Locklin and later more tours with Locklin as well as working with Roy Orbison, the Carter Family, Lonnie Donegan, Carl Belew and again with the Carter Family.

In due course, more singles, two EPs and an album, “Western Style” followed. Today copies of that original LP album and the EPs are collectors’ pieces and exchange hands at high prices. Houston is amazed at the prices they sell for,

“I never realised how collectable my recordings were until a friend showed me on the Internet.”

The constant pressure for concerts, tours and recordings coupled with the equally constant lack of funds placed pressures on the group and in 1964 they split. Meek immediately replaced The Marksmen with The Outlaws – as he had originally wanted – and Houston Wells & The Outlaws toured Ireland as well as returning to the studios to make more recordings, including “Galway Bay” and “Wild Side Of Life”, which both appear on CD1 of this set and include Deep Purple’s Ritchie Blackmore and Chas Hodges of Chas & Dave fame amongst the backing musicians. Other well-known musicians playing on Houston’s sessions at different times included Canadian steel guitarist Ken Lundgren, guitarist Big Jim Sullivan – renowned as an artiste in his own right as well as for his work with Tom Jones - and drummer Mick Underwood.

There followed a number of years during which Houston largely based himself in Ireland but toured not only the emerald isle but much further afield, working exhausting schedules across the UK, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Spain and many other European countries as well as a tour in the USA.

During these years Houston worked with different bands. Initially there was The Masters, then in 1966 when The Masters split, Houston joined forces with The Premier Aces. With both bands, Houston enjoyed the trappings of success for the first time. They earned good money for their personal appearances and enjoyed charting records in the Irish Charts.

In 1968 Houston formed The Trident Showband, working 7 nights per week, travelling hundreds of miles on a regular basis, including once again touring with Hank Locklin.

Numerous fine recordings were made through the Irish years, sometimes returning to the UK to record for Meek but later also recording in the Emerald Isle. One track recorded during a brief visit to the Meek studios was the aforementioned “We’ll Remember You” – the Reeves tribute. The song was given to Houston in the studio and he had to take it home, arrange it over night and record it the next day at 9am!. Contrary to some reports, the track was recorded with The Masters, not The Outlaws as many people assumed. Houston is particularly glad to see it included in this compilation,

“During the tour with Jim we got to know him very well and he did a lot to help us. He even invited us to tour with him in the USA, although tragically, that was never to be as he was killed in the plane crash. Although I didn’t write this song, I meant every word that I sang”

The boys loved the life on the road, exhausting though it was. There were lots of crazy antics but few regrets. Perhaps one regret for Houston was missing the opportunity to shoot as a marksman in the Olympic team because the band was engaged to perform elsewhere. He did however win the West of Ireland down the line double rise Championship.

But back to the music. More fine recordings were made with both The Premier Aces and The Trident Showband. “When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold Again” “Hello Mary Lou” and “Above And beyond” were good examples, the latter reaching No 4 in the Irish charts. During that period of time he also returned to England to record “Does My Ring Hurt Your Finger” and “Teach Me Little Children” Notwithstanding the success the boys achieved, with changing musical trends, it was becoming more and more tough to schedule appropriate work, the hours were crazy and members of the band began to yearn to spend more time with their families and loved ones. Thus in 1971, Houston resolved to bring the band to a close and they split amicably.

Houston decided it was time to leave the music industry and return to the outdoors. He embraced his long-held love of shooting and to replace the income from concerts, moved to County Wicklow where the family bought a logging business. They were successful at first but then fuel shortages and rising petrol prices made life really difficult and in late 1973 they closed the business.

To New Zealand

Houston decided that he would make a fresh start. He would emigrate to New Zealand. He contacted his ex-wife and obtained her blessing to take the children with him. Some rumours years later suggested that as the fans didn’t know what had happened to him, Houston must have “stolen” his children and would therefore be wanted by Interpol!! This was not the case and Houston and the children sailed uneventfully for Auckland in December 1973, arriving down-under on 8th February 1974.

Houston promptly re-entered the logging business and for a time even returned to his other work-passion of driving earth-moving equipment! (He still gets excited at the thought of driving big machines!). He was offered operating work in various parts of the world but declined the potentially high earnings in favour of remaining with his family. They settled and built a life there and, although Houston never lost his love of country music, he no longer saw himself as a performer.

He did however continue to write songs and these were filed at first but later became part of his drive to see a new commercial CD release.

The Call Of The Boards

Although Houston keeps busy with his gym workouts, his shooting, his songwriting and his family, the call of the boards was too strong to be ignored forever. It was a series of unconnected events though that led to him reawakening the passion for singing!

On settling in New Zealand, Houston had continued with his shooting in his spare time and in 1986 was part of the New Zealand team that competed in the World Sporting Championships in Australia. Whilst there, Houston sang a few songs one evening at an informal get-together and found that, not only did he still get that same old “buzz” from performing, but his audience loved it too! The voice was still good and that evening awoke the seed of the performer within him.

Houston began to take an interest in the lively New Zealand country music scene and performed informally from time to time in the local country music clubs. He continued writing songs and started to build a reputation for having a good voice and singing good material! He began to attract the attention of local country music names such as singer John Hore Grenell and producer Dave Maybee. Maybee invited Houston to record some of the songs he had been writing. Before long, Houston Wells was once again laying down tracks. Now though the pop-country sounds of the 60s had been replaced by a more mature-sounding Houston recording some impressive contemporary country music.

By the late 1990s, Houston had built an ambition to once again seek a commercial release for some of this new repertoire of material. A couple of CD compilations from his early recordings had generated a lot of interest and shown there was a market for Houston Wells product. A friend produced a website for him and that also generated immediate interest. Eventually Houston was contacted by a couple of UK-based labels that were interested in releasing an album in due course. Those discussions continue but in the meantime, Jasmine Records have been in discussion with Houston about this project, which aims to bring up to date the story of the Houston Wells recording career.

Houston Wells Today

Houston today lives on the shores of Lake Taupo, New Zealand where he enjoys a busy life combining his family and music with his interests of shooting, mending antique clocks and keeping fit. Musically, he has ongoing inspiration from his son, Rob Smith who is an established and respected guitarist and vocalist in his own right. They often spend time together in Rob’s studio, experimenting with new songs and laying down demo takes.

Houston has also recently written his first novel and is now looking for a publisher. Although a fictional story, it draws from many of Houston’s experiences through the years and there is much of Houston in the main character! Even today, his love of the outdoors remains and when he is not trekking up a mountain, or haring through the bush on his mountain bike, he can often be found sitting by the lake writing songs.




Coming soon via Jasmine Records a brand new double CD set of Houston Wells recordings:

Houston Wells
Then & Now: From Joe Meek To New Zealand (2 CD)
Release Date: 14 March 2008
Release Numbers: JASCD 475/6
Available from: Jasmine Records


CD 1: The Early Years

1. This Song Is Just for You (2.35) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Hank Williams, Harris)
(C Connelly & Co Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek & Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums

2. North Wind (2.35)
(Joe Meek)
(Ivy Music Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums

3. Only The Heartaches (2.52)
(W P Walker, C J Edwins, T Kennedy)
(Southern Music)
Produced by Joe Meek

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums

4. Can't Stop Pretending (2.55) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Houston Wells, Allan Stephens)
(Ivy Music Ltd)
Arranged by Pete Willsher
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

5. Blowing Wild (2.26) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Dimitri Tiomkin, Paul Francis Webster)
(Harms. Witmark)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Jimmy Page - Lead Guitar
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

6. Crazy Dreams (2.23) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Houston Wells)
(Ivy Music Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Jimmy Page - Lead Guitar
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

7. Girl Down the Street (1.51) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Houston Wells)
(Ivy Music Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums

8. Ramona (2.33) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Mabel Wayne, L Wolfe Gilbert)
(F Day, NCB)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Ritchie Blackmore - Lead Guitar
Ken Lundgren - Steel Guitar
Chas Hodges - Bass Guitar
Mick Underwood - Drums

9. Anna Marie (2.55) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Cindy Walker)
(Aberbach London Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

10. Strangers (2.56) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Pettican, Mahoney)
(Ivy Music Ltd)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums

11. Hula Love (2.47) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Buddy Knox)
(Macmelodies)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Guitars

12. Call Me Another Time (2.11) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Jean Jolly, Houston Wells, Allan Stephens)
(Francis Day & Hunter)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

13. All For The Love Of A Girl (2.47) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Johnny Horton)
(BMI)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Pete Willsher - Lead Guitar, Steel Lap Guitar
Norman Hull - Guitar
Brian Gill - Bass Guitar
Peter Nye - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals, Guitar, Piano

14. The Wild Side Of Life (2.34) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(W Warren, A A Carter)
(Unart Music Corp, BMI)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Ritchie Blackmore - Lead Guitar
Ken Lundgren - Steel Guitar
Chas Hodges - Bass Guitar
Mick Underwood - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Guitars

15. Galway Bay (2.39)
(Arthur Colahan)
(Universal)
Produced by Joe Meek

Houston Wells - Vocals
Ritchie Blackmore - Lead Guitar
Ken Lundgren - Steel Guitar
Chas Hodges - Bass Guitar
Mick Underwood - Drums

16. We'll Remember You (2.53) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Geoff Goddard)
(Control)
Produced by Joe Meek
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Jimmy Halferty - Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
Richard Duffy - Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals
John Patterson - Rhythm Guitar
Hugh Magidegan - Drums
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals, Guitars, Strings

17. Blue Of The Night (2.07)
(Turk, Crosby, Ahlert)
(Victoria Music)
Produced by Shel Talmy

Houston Wells - Vocals
Big Jim Sullivan - Lead Guitar
Jimmy Halferty - Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
Richard Duffy - Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals
John Patterson - Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vocals
Hugh Magidegan - Drums, Backing Vocals

18. Does My Ring Hurt Your Finger? (2.26)
(D.Robertson, D.Clement, J.Crutchfield)
(Cop Con)
Arranged by Alan Moorhouse
Produced by Tony Reeves

Houston Wells - Vocals
The Ladybirds (aka The Benny Hill Singers) - Backing Vocals
Pete Willsher - Steel Guitar

19. Teach Me Little Children (2.20) (Previously Unreleased Remix)
(Dorsey Burnette, J Osborn)
(Lightup Music)
Arranged by Alan Moorhouse
Produced by Tony Reeves
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Additional Backing Vocals

20. Above And Beyond (2.34)
(Howard)
(Campbell Connelly)
Produced by Tommy Ellis

Houston Wells - Vocals
Jimmy O'Neill - Guitar
Billy Ryan - Guitar
Johnny Carroll - Trumpet
Sonny Ward - Tenor Saxophone, Clarinet
Larry Carolan - Bass
Paddy Malone - Alto Saxophone, Clarinet
Andy Malone - Drums

21. When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold (2.32)
(Wiley Walker, Gene Sullivan)
(Southern)
Produced by Tommy Ellis

Houston Wells - Vocals
Jimmy O'Neill - Guitar
Billy Ryan - Guitar
Johnny Carroll - Trumpet
Sonny Ward - Tenor Saxophone, Clarinet
Larry Carolan - Bass
Paddy Malone - Alto Saxophone, Clarinet
Andy Malone - Drums

22. Hello Mary Lou (2.25)
(Gene Pitney)
(January)
Produced by Houston Wells

Houston Wells - Vocals
Harry Hockedy - Drums
Louis McMahon - Saxophone & Keyboards
Michael Hughes - Bass Guitar
Frank Minihan - Lead Guitar
Jack O'Loughlan - Trumpet
Frank Coughlan - Vocals
John Parrott - Bass Guitar
P J Naughton - Saxophone
Jerry Connors - Trombone

23. I Won't Go Hunting With You Jake (3.49) (Re-recorded)
(Stuart Hamblen)
(Leeds)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

24. Just For Old Time's Sake (4.53) (Re-recorded)
(McGuires)
(Control)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

25. Little Black Book (2.50) (Re-recorded)
(Jimmy Dean)
(MAM)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Guitars, Bass Guitar
Matt Sturgess - Dobro
Alex Wiltshire - Piano

26. Little Daughter (3.38)
(Houston Wells)
(Polar Music New Zealand)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, Guitar
Dave Maybee - Acoustic Guitar

27. Ireland (3.46)
(Robert Smith)
(Polar Music New Zealand)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Dave Maybee - Lead Guitar
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals
Joy Adams - Backing Vocals

CD 2: The All-New Contemporary Houston Wells

1. The End Is Not In Sight (3.52) (Previously Unreleased)
(Russell Smith)
(Valley Entertainment)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

2. Send A Message To My Heart (5.01) (Previously Unreleased)
(Kostas & Kathy Louvin)
(Control)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

3. As I Leave Behind Neidin (2.52) (Previously Unreleased)
(Jimmy McCarthy)
(Control)
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Dave Maybee - Lead Guitar
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals

4. Devil Woman (4.35) (Previously Unreleased)
(Marty Robbins)
(Noma Music, Unichappell Music, BMI)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

5. Lonely Street (4.54) (Previously Unreleased)
(Carl Belew, Kenny Sowder, W S Stevenson)
(Acuff–Rose Music)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation
Catherine Smith - Backing Vocals
Laura Smith - Backing Vocals

6. The Girl From Yesterday (3.08) (Previously Unreleased)
(Glen Frey, Jack Tempchin)
(Control)
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Dave Maybee - Lead Guitar
Neil Reynolds - Drums
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals
Joy Adams - Backing Vocals

7. Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (4.31) (Previously Unreleased)
(James Royce Shannon)
(Shannon/B Feldman & Co)
Arranged by Houston Wells & Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

8. Sleepy Eyed John (2.49) (Previously Unreleased)
(Tex Atchinson)
(Vanguard Songs)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

9. I Really Don't Want To Know (5.10) (Previously Unreleased)
(Don Robertson, Howard Barnes)
(Don Robertson Music Corporation)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

10. Forty Shades Of Green (3.02) (Previously Unreleased)
(Johnny Cash)
(Anne Rachel Music, ASCAP/Song Of Cash Music, ASCAP)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vocals
Dave Maybee - Dobro
Neil Reynolds - Drums

11. King Of Fools (3.41) (Previously Unreleased)
(Dwight Yoakam, Kostas)
(Coal Dust West Music, BMI/Seven Angels Music, BMI/Songs Of Polygram, BMI)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, Guitars, Piano
Otto Beesling - Bass Guitar

12. I Wouldn't Cheat On You (3.01) (Previously Unreleased)
(Robert Smith)
(Polar Music New Zealand)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Dave Maybee

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
Dave Maybee - Dobro
Neil Reynolds - Drums

13. One More Last Chance (3.15) (Previously Unreleased)
(Vince Gill, Gary Nicholson)
(Cross Keys Music Publishing, ASCAP/Benefit Music, BMI)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

14. Sweet And Gentle Love (3.36) (Previously Unreleased)
(Jimmy McCarthy)
(O’Meara/O’Meara)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

15. My Happiness (3.41) (Previously Unreleased)
(Betty Peterson Blasco, Borney Begantine)
(Santiarm Music)
Arranged by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation
Produced by Rob Smith

16. If I Didn't Have You In My World (3.30) (Previously Unreleased)
(Vince Gill. Jim Weatherly)
(Milene Music, ASCAP/Benefit Music, BMI)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

17. I Will Love You Every Time (3.53) (Previously Unreleased)
(Phil Coulter, Tom Paxton)
(Essex Music)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

18. If The Whole World Stopped Loving (3.39) (Previously Unreleased)
(Ben Peters, Robert Smith)
(Mecolico, Fingerlake Music Inc/Polar Music New Zealand, Robert Smith)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Dave Maybee
Additional Production by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Dave Maybee - Lead Guitar
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals
Phil Smith - Backing Vocals

19. Honky Tonk Man (2.48) (Previously Unreleased)
(Tillman Franks, Howard Hausey, Johnny Horton)
(Cedarwood Publishing, BMI)
Arranged by Rob Smith
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

20. Bluest Heartache Of The Year (4.37) (Previously Unreleased)
(W Wimberly, Rocky Wimberly)
(Jonathan)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation

21. You're My Best Friend (3.53) (Previously Unreleased)
(Wayland Holyfield)
(The Welk Music Group)
Produced by Rob Smith

Houston Wells - Vocals
Rob Smith - Backing Vocals, All Instrumentation


For more information on Houston Wells, please feel free to check out his The Official Houston Wells Website


Visit Houston Wells on MySpaceThe Official Houston Wells MySpace Page


For more information on Rob Smith, please feel free to check out his The Official Rob Smith Website

Why this name?
Tis a long story. But is sure beats Chuck Texas now doesn't it ? No offense if this happens to be your name.
Do you play live?
Houston had played live on many occasions.
Would you sign a record contract with a major label?
Houston is already a signed artist.
Your influences?
Jim Reeves, Hank Locklin, Hank Williams, Marty Robbins, Vince Gill..and many others.
Anything else...?
Special thanks to all the people who have come out of hiding to make themselves known after all of these years, it has been a pleasure making contact after all this time.
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