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Q&A: Ray Wylie Hubbard talks 'dead thumb' guitar playing, working with Willie Nelson, and more

Q&A: Ray Wylie Hubbard talks 'dead thumb' guitar playing, working with Willie Nelson, and more

Long before the release of his newest album, "The Ruffian's Misfortune," Texas-based songwriter and guitar-slayer Ray Wylie Hubbard joined the pantheon of country-blues rock gods he so often enshrines in his songs. "Misfortune" is a hearty stew of gritty, greasy blues licks grounded in Hubbard's gothic-inflected folk songwriting. The idea of bad luck—or bad choices, depending on how you look at it—and redemption runs through the whole album, or, as Hubbard put it in an interview, "If there's a theme to the album it's that I hope God grades on a curve." He conjures a world inhabited by down-on-their-luck cowboys, drunks, bar...

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