Wayne Hancock Rides the Blues Away After a Setback

“I think with all of my albums, I write about pretty much how I live my life,” says Wayne “the Train” Hancock, the swinging honky-tonk veteran with a voice like a whistle in the night.

In the past, that led Hancock to feel-good tunes dedicated to drinking and living on the road like “Thunderstorms and Neon Signs” and “Juke Joint Jumpin’.” But he’s recently had a big setback, and his new album, Ride, by and large shows a man with a real case of the blues.

“Me and my wife recently got separated,” admits Hancock. “So I kind of fell into the motorcycle community and started doing a lot of hard riding. It just seemed like the thing to do. I figured it was time to take a different direction on something.”

Coming out Feb. 26, Ride is dedicated to the one thing that’s been helping him get by, and the album’s first single — the title track — gives a candid look into his mindset.

“Being on a bike, doing 80-something miles an hour down the highway, is better than Prozac ever was,” he says. “You’re pretty unprotected out there. When I ride, I’m so concentrated on the highway that I don’t think about anything else. It could be 40 degrees, and I’m not even cold. And there’s that Outlaw image with it, too. I figured, ‘Hell, I’m on Outlaw radio. Might as well go all the way with it.’”

You can download a copy of “Ride” starting Tuesday (Feb. 12). In in the meantime, enjoy our exclusive world premiere of the bittersweet track.