- Released: October 27, 1998
- Label: RCA
- 1.Down That Dusty Trail
- 2.Travelin' Light
- 3.Feelin' Good Again
- 4.That Buckin' Song
- 5.I'll Be Here
- 6.Billy Gray
- 7.Theme: Road To No Return / Carolina
- 8.New Life In Old Mexico
- 9.Still Without You / Conclusion: Road To No Return
- 10.Silent Track
- 11.Happy Holidays Y'all - (bonus track)
Personnel: Robert Earl Keen, Lyle Lovett, Reaiah Morgan (vocals); Rich Brotherton (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, classical guitar, National Resophonic guitar, tenor banjo); Gurf Morlix (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, lap steel guitar, mandocello, 6-string bass, Regal octaphone); Bithyah Israel (vocals, cello); Bill Whitbeck (vocals, trombone, acoustic fretless & electric basses); Lloyd Maines (pedal steel guitar); Bryan Duckworth (acoustic & electric mandolins, violin, fiddle, background vocals); Gene Elders (violin); Ponty Bone (accordion); Ian McLagen (piano, Hammond B-3 organ); Tom Van Schaik (drums, bodhan, congas, bells, background vocals); Zachary Koock (background vocals).
Engineers: Stuart Sullivan, Larry Greenhill.
Recorded at Arlyn Studios, Austin, Texas.
Keen is often compared to (and found in the company of) Lyle Lovett, another country-rooted iconoclast with a good sense of humor. That's pretty much were the similarities end though. On WALKING DISTANCE, Keen advances the style he spent years pursuing; a blend of country, rock and folk marked by a knack for sharp, detail-oriented lyricism and an appealing light-heartedness. On tunes like "Down That Dusty Trail" and "Billy Gray," Keen's homey voice is instantly communicative and personal; all the better to deliver his heartfelt, worldly observations. Fans of Joe Ely (whose rough timbre Keen sometimes suggests) in particular will find much to enjoy here.