Wet Willie

Playing 2020

About Wet Willie

Wet Willie formed in Mobile, Alabama in 1969 when brothers Jack and Jimmy Hall teamed with drummer Lewis Ross, keyboardist John Anthony, and guitarist Ricky Hirsch to form a group originally called Fox. They relocated to Macon, Georgia in 1970 and joined forces with songwriter Frank Friedman, before signing a contract with Capricorn Records. Soon after, Fox was reborn as Wet Willie.

“What the band was all about was energetic, funky, greasy, bluesy, R&B-based rock,” bassist Jack Hall explained. In its review of their self-titled debut album, Rolling Stone magazine declared that Jimmy had “a voice strut and an air of raucous elegance not unlike Jagger.” Guitarist Wick Larsen replaced Friedman before the first album was released and, after a second studio LP, performed with the group on 1973’s live album, Drippin’ Wet. It was the first of their releases to appear on national sales charts.

Wet Willie’s major breakthrough came with 1974’s “Keep On Smilin’,” which reached the Top 10 on the Billboard singles chart. The accompanying album officially introduced the Williettes, the two-woman backup vocal team that included Jack and Jimmy’s sister, Donna Hall. Donna was joined, in succession, by Ella Avery, Elkie Brooks, and Leslie Hawkins, who would later work with Lynyrd Skynyrd.

After five albums with Capricorn, Wet Willie relocated to Atlanta. By the time they signed with Epic Records in 1977, Jack and Jimmy Hall were the sole original members. Along with keyboardist Mike Duke, who had joined the previous year, the Halls rebuilt the band with Marshall Smith, T.K. Lively, and Larry Berwald. They carried the singles “Street Corner Serenade” and “Weekend” to the Top 40, but after two albums with Epic, the band members went their separate ways.

After a hiatus in the 1980s, Wet Willie regrouped, released “Miles of Smiles,” a live album on Hittin’ the Note Records, and continues to perform.

What Passengers Think

2018 was our first Rock Legends Cruise and as soon as we got off the boat we booked RLC7 for 2019. The entire experience was such a good vibe. Everybody on board from passengers to artists are just having a great time. It’s not hard to do when everyone around you is happy.

Kris Bennett, RLC6 Kris Bennett, RLC6

This was my 5th RLC out of 6 and will be on the next one in 2019. It is the only way to do a cruise and one of the best ways to have an over the top rock ‘n roll experience. There are three venues with shows going on from 10 am to past 12 midnight – every day! Once you’re done for the night, the convenience of your cabin is just steps away. The RLC lineup speaks for itself. There is so much talent, legends and upcoming rockers, on the ship! The people, your fellow rockers, are all there for the same reason – rock ‘n roll! Don’t be surprised if you run into a few rock stars on the elevator or just hanging out watching a show.

L. Kelly, Best Rock'n Roll Experience L. Kelly, Best Rock'n Roll Experience