Willie Nelson plans to record for his own label, signs sons
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
– Willie Nelson, who will formally announce the formation of his own record label Friday during South by Southwest, will record for Perdanales Recors once his obligations to Lost Highway Records are completed.
Nelson also signed his sons,guitarist and singer Lukas Nelson and drummer Micah Nelson, to the label as 40 Points.
Partnering with Nelson in the Austin-based venture are his longtime manager Mark Rothbaum and noted producer James Stroud, whose credits include work with such star acts as Toby Keith, Tim McGraw, Neil Diamond, The Neville Brothers, Hank Williams Jr. and Nelson. He also was instrumental in getting the late DreamWorks Nashville off the ground.
"The label is an extension of Willie's philosophy on music, which is that
there are no boundaries," says Stroud. "One of the things that makes him
such an icon is that he has always been open to any genre of music that's
done well and with passion. So the label will be an extension of that
vision and those feelings, which he will now bring to Pedernales Records."
The label will also reflect Nelson's career long commitment to nurturing and
supporting new talent, which goes as far back as his financing the first
Nashville recordings by his friend and now country legend Johnny Bush in
the 1960s up to, most recently, his strong early support for Los Lonely Boys.
40 Points will also perform at the press conference Friday announcing the label. The Nelson boys played with Willie on the summer 2005 Nelson/Bob Dylan tour. The group, whose sound is a unique blend of rock, reggae,
blues and funk, has also opened shows for Willie Nelson and Family as well
as Dylan, Los Lonely Boys, UB40, The Doobie Brothers and Jack Johnson and
appeared at such festivals as Willie's annual Fourth of July Picnic. The
debut album by 40 Points includes a guest appearance by the elder Nelson
with his sons and is produced by Stroud. The disc is slated to be out this summer.
Nelson will record for the label following his stint with Lost Highway Records. His latest release, out March 20, is "Last of the Breed," a two-disc album with Merle Haggard and Ray Price, with whom he will be touring from March 9 to March 25, backed by Asleep at the Wheel.
Pedernales Records takes its name from the river that flows by Nelson's home
and headquarters outside of Austin, where he also owns Pedernales Country
Club and founded Pedernales Studios (now owned by his nephew Freddy
Fletcher). He and Fletcher are also partners in another new
entertainment venture, the Austin City Limits Theater in downtown Austin
that will be the TV studio of the long-running PBS concert show as well as
a world-class live music venue.
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