Hailed as one of the best live acts in the UK, Wille and the Bandits delivers hard-rockin,’ roots blues and soulful ballads, with a hint of psychedelic rock. They accomplish this with the rockin’-blues rarity of combining conventional and non-traditional instruments. Wille Edwards, a professed surf-lover from Cornwall, England, provides lead vocals, electric and acoustic guitar, electric lap steel, dobro, and electric weissenborn. Matt Brooks, runner up “Blues Bassist of the Year”, does the string arrangements, plays the six-string electric bass, five-string double bass, cello, and provides background vocals. Andrew Naumann, who has been awarded UK “Drummer of the Year” and dubbed the “beat master”, plays drums, djembes, congas, wood- and steel-tongue drums, udu, shakers, Jews harp, and provides background vocals.

These multi-talent musicians have toured and played alongside bands like Deep Purple, Joe Bonamassa, Status Quo, and Warren Hayne. The boundary-pushing sound and infectious songs created by this trio have inspired praise from Rock legends like Ian Paice, Francis Rossi, and Joe Bonamassa who said, “Wille is a superb slide player, I love what these guys are doing.” It also got them a spot at Glastonbury 2014, where BBC Radio 1 listed them at the top of the ten bands to see.

With the release of their sixth album, Paths, this February, the band will be touring throughout Europe before embarking on their first North America appearance in Omaha at Playing with Fire free summer concert series.

Hands down, you’ve got to see Wille and the Bandits on the PwF stage!

When they’re at PwF

Wille and the Bandits, up close

  • Wille Edwards – Lead Vocals, Electric and Acoustic Guitars, Electric Lap Steel, Dobro, Electric Weissenborn
  • Matt Brooks – Six String Electric Bass, Five String Double Bass, Cello, String Arrangements, Backing Vocals
  • Andrew Naumann – Drums, Djembes, Congas, Wood and Steel Tongue Drums, Udu Shakers, Jews Harp, Backing Vocals

Just for PwF fans

Top 5 Favorite Band Tunes

Insights from PwF Producer Jeff Davis about Wille and the Bandits

When did you first hear about the artist, or when did you first hear them perform?

I was researching slide guitarists on the internet and saw a YouTube of Wille and the Bandits.

What is it about the artist that made you select them for the 2019 PwF concert series?

Unique sound that is guitar driven. Relatively few covers. High energy. Each band member plays both conventional and unconventional instruments.

How would you describe the artist’s sound?

Hard rockin’ roots blues and soulful ballads with a tinge of psychedelic rock.

Do you think the artist’s sound is similar to any other artist (not performing this year)? If so, who?

Wille and and the Bandits have their own unique sound. It is on the fringe of the Blues. The closest similar sound would be the Australian musician, Mason Rack.   

Anything about the artist that we wouldn’t find online?

The band plays conventional as well as non-traditional instruments one would rarely find in a rocking blues band. 

Wille is a surfer from Cornwall England who started his career as a busker in local pubs where he met drummer Andrew Naumann. His song “Angel” was composed after the passing of his mother.

Where you can hear them online

Wille and the Bandits’ Playlist

Top listened to artists:

  • Great Van Fleet
  • Pearl Jam
  • Walter Trout
  • Ben Harper
  • Joe Bonamassa
  • John Butler Trio
  • Peter Green
  • Santana
  • Led Zeppelin
  • Pink Floyd
  • Allman Brothers
  • Derek Trucks
  • Warren Haynes

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