Never slowing down, Nelson covers Howard
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Never slowing down, Nelson covers Howard

Tuesday, January 17, 2023 – Willie Nelson is not ready to retire. He will release "I Don't Know A Thing About Love," a new studio album on March 3.

Nelson, who turns 90 on April 29, and band recorded fresh interpretations of 10 classic compositions penned by American songwriter Harlan Howard, an early musical contemporary of Willie's who famously defined a great country song as "three chords and the truth."

Over six decades, Howard wrote many popular songs and enduring standards for a variety of artists. In 1961 alone, he had 15 compositions on the country charts, which earned him 10 BMI awards. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973 and, in 1997, was inducted into both the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He died in Nashville in 2002 at age 74.

The first single, "Busted," is out digitally today. Written in 1962, "Busted" is the saga of a dirt-poor farmer bemoaning his overdue bills, crop failures and other financial woes while maintaining a sense of hope for the future. The song was a 1963 first for Johnny Cash with the Carter Family on Billboard's Hot Country Singles chart (number 13) and then a Top 10 smash for Ray Charles on the Billboard Hot 100 (number four). Charles and Nelson recorded a live version of "Busted" on Ray's 2005 duets album, "Genius & Friends. " John Conlee hit number six on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart with his cover of "Busted" in 1982.

Featuring cover art by Micah Nelson (Willie's son), "I Don't Know A Thing About Love" was produced by longtime musical collaborator Buddy Cannon. Musicians include Willie Nelson (his guitar Trigger, lead vocals), Larry Paxton (bass, tic tac bass), Lonnie Wilson (drums), Bobby Terry (acoustic guitar, electric guitar), James Mitchell (electric guitar), Mike Johnson (steel guitar), Mickey Raphael (harmonica), Jim "Moose" Brown (piano, synthesizer, B3 organ, Wurlitzer), Wyatt Beard (background vocals), and Melonie Cannon (background vocals).

The track list is:
1. Tiger By The Tail
2. The Chokin' Kind
3. Excuse Me (I Think I've Got A Heartache)
4. Life Turned Her That Way
5. I Don't Know A Thing About Love
6. Streets Of Baltimore
7. Busted
8. She Called Me Baby
9. Too Many Rivers
10. Beautiful Annabel Lee

Nelson also will be in the movies. "Wille Nelson & Family," a new five-part film documentary series directed by Thom Zimny and Oren Moverman, is premiering later this week at Sundance Film Festival 2023.

Nelson also is nominated for four Grammy Awards from three separate projects: Best Country Solo Performance ("Live Forever") (from "Live Forever: A Tribute to Billy Joe Shaver"); Best Country Song ("I'll Love You Till The Day I Die") (songwriting award, from "A Beautiful Time"); Best Country Album ("A Beautiful Time") and Best Roots Gospel Album ("The Willie Nelson Family)".

2012, Nelson entered into a new record deal with Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, marking a label homecoming for Nelson, who, from 1975-1993, had cut many top-selling singles and albums for Columbia Records, beginning with 1975's seminal smash "Red Headed Stranger."

New titles by the artist under the Legacy imprint include newly recorded songs and performances as well as archival releases, personally curated by the artist, drawn from all phases of Nelson's career including his recordings for RCA Records and others.

More news for Willie Nelson

CD reviews for Willie Nelson

CD review - Don't Know A Thing About Love Who doesn't love and respect Willie Nelson? Willie, even at age 90, could sing the phone book – perhaps he has – and it would be worth hearing. Willie's latest is a tribute to the songwriting of Harlan Howard, the dean of country music songwriters, who passed away in 2002. Howard once described country music as "three chords and the truth." Howard wrote hundreds of country hits during his career. Nelson and producer Buddy Cannon picked 10 to showcase here, ...
CD review - A Beautiful Time They say if you love what you do, you'll never have to work a day in your life. Just ask 89-year-old Willie Nelson. Within recent history, he's been releasing records at a clip far younger people can only envy, at over an album a year. A tribute album to Frank Sinatra? Absolutely. Traditional hymns? Sure. Another tribute album to Frank Sinatra? You can't make this stuff up. Beginning with the 2017 "God's Problem Child" record, Willie started musically pondering the meaning of life. ...
CD review - That's Life Willie Nelson's decades-old explorations into the Great American Songbook continue with his second Frank Sinatra tribute in less than three years - the solid and satisfying "That's Life." As with its 2018 predecessor "My Way," Nelson once again joined forces with the production team of Buddy Cannon and Matt Rollings. Like that previous outing, Rollings' "That's Life" arrangements don't go far afield from those found on the tracks popularized by Sinatra. ...

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