Archive for the ‘Duets and collaborations’ Category

Willie Nelson celebrates Ray Benson’s Birthday in Austin (Mar. 14, 2017)

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

Fans got a big surprise when Willie Nelson showed up unannounced at Asleep at the Wheel frontman Ray Bensen’s early birthday bash on March 14.

The celebration, which took place in Austin, Texas behind advertising firm GSD&M, is part of a South By Southwest tradition held to raise money for Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM).

In this clip, Willie, 83, is shown jamming out to “Whiskey River” alongside Ray and the Avett Brothers. According to Austin 360, the harmonica-infused track, which appears on the country legend’s 1973 “Shotgun Willie” album, was the first of many in the set list he played that night.

Willie also teamed up with the birthday boy on a cover of Townes Van Zandt’s “Pancho & Lefty.”

Willie continued to delight folks with songs including one off his upcoming LP, “God’s Problem Child,” called “Still Not Dead.” After running through a dozen or so songs, he concluded his performance with the iconic “On The Road Again.”

Aside from Willie and the Avett Brothers, other artists in attendance included Sunny Sweeney, Wade Bowen, Randy Rogers, Shelly King, Marcia Ball, Carolyn Wonderland and Charlie Sexton. Ray turned 66 on March 16.

The two have been friends a long time.


Willie Nelson and Billy Joe Shaver, “Willie, the Wandering Gypsy and Me” (Luck Reunion)

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

The crowd went crazy when Billy Joe Shaver joined Willie Nelson on stage last night at the Luck Reunion, at Willie’s western ranch outside Austin. The two friends conferred for a minute, and then broke in to “Willie, the Wandering Gypsy, and me. Willie played the song on Trigger like he did it every night. He is an amazing guitar player. Billy Joe is such a story teller, incredible songwriter and so much fun to watch.

Willie Nelson and Bonnie Raitt

Monday, March 13th, 2017

Willie Nelson has collaborated with Bonnie Raitt three times: In 1993, on “Getting Over You ” on Across the Borderline,  in 1979 playing guitar on “Trouble In Mind”, and in 2001 harmonizing on “You Remain.”

“You Remain” with Willie Nelson (2001)

“I really only sang the background,” remembers Raitt, “But the song still stays in my heart.”

Willie Nelson and Julio Iglesias, “Spanish Eyes”

Friday, March 10th, 2017

Willie Nelson and Frank Sinatra, “A Foggy Day in London Town”

Saturday, March 4th, 2017

“Outlaw: Celebrating the Music of Waylon Jennings”, with Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson and more (airs on CMT April 7th)

Saturday, March 4th, 2017

Blackbird Presents Home

On Monday, July 6, 2015, a collection of music’s legendary outlaws and rising superstars came together for a once-in-a-lifetime concert event at ACL Live At The The Moody Theater in Austin, TX, to honor Waylon Jennings, one of the most influential musicians of the Outlaw Country movement. The concert event was filmed and recorded for multi-platform distribution throughout traditional and digital media.

OUTLAW: CELEBRATING THE MUSIC OF WAYLON JENNINGS featured performances by: Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Toby Keith, Eric Church, Kacey Musgraves, Ryan Bingham, Sturgill Simpson, Jamey Johnson, Lee Ann Womack, Chris Stapleton, Shooter Jennings, and Jessi Colter.

Grammy Award-winner Don Was served as co-music director and led an all-star band backing the performers at this concert event. Legendary music producer Buddy Cannon also served as co-music director. “Waylon Jennings was my friend, brother, and musical soul mate”, said Willie Nelson. “Playing his songs with these incredible artists, is going to be one hell of a concert event.”

On Friday, April 7, 2017, the two-hour broadcast premiere will air on CMT at 10 pm ET/PT, and Sony Legacy will release the concert film as a CD/DVD combo / digital download which is available for immediate preorder.

The full length concert film features performances by Willie Nelson, Eric Church, Chris Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson, Kris Kristofferson, Toby Keith, Alison Krauss, Kacey Musgraves, Ryan Bingham, Jamey Johnson, Lee Ann Womack, Shooter Jennings, Buddy Miller, Jessi Colter, Robert Earl Keen, & Bobby Bare. See the official trailer.

The CMT premiere and DVD both include a range of Jennings classics, such as “Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys” (performed by Willie Nelson and Toby Keith), “Lonesome, On’ry And Mean” (performed by Eric Church), “I Ain’t Living Long Like This” (performed by Chris Stapleton), a very special performance of “Highwayman,” (performed by Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Shooter Jennings and Jamey Johnson) and an all-star grand finale performance of “Luckenbach, Texas.”

In a heartfelt reflection on the project, Jessi Colter recalled a beautiful lyric she wrote – “You did hang the moon, didn’t you Waylon?”

See more photos here.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard in concert at Anaheim Stadium (Oct 28, 1980)

Friday, March 3rd, 2017
by:  Scott Harrison

Country music greats Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard headlined the six-hour Country Fall Festival event at Anaheim Stadium. Los Angeles Times staff photographer George Rose and columnist Robert Hilburn covered the concert.

Hilburn wrote in his Oct. 28, 1980, Los Angeles Times review:

…“Welcome to Anaheim Stadium,” said the recorded voice over a loudspeaker at the entrance to the facility Sunday afternoon. “No bottles, cans, alcohol, lawn chairs or weapons allowed…”

Lawn chairs or weapons didn’t seem much of an issue among the country fans, but limitations on the alcohol caused some alarm.

“You mean we can’t drink beer!” shouted one fan with an ample belly pressing over his faded jeans. “I’ll be damned if I’m going to a Willie Nelson show and not drink beer.” The group with him hooted in agreement.

“No,” a female usher explained quickly. “You can drink beer inside. You just can’t bring cans and bottles into the stadium.”

Relieved, the group moved into the stadium and took their place at the end of the long beer line.

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” a stadium concession worker said later about the beer-drinking. “These people are drinking more beer than the Rams crowd. We’ve gone through 52 cases already.”

Fifty-two cases? That didn’t seem like a lot for a crowd of 30,000.

“I’m not talking about the crowd,” the employee responded. “That was just for backstage.”  …

To avoid damage to the football field Sunday, the crowd had to remain in the stands. Besides limiting mobility, the move reduced contact with the performers. The stage was at second base, roughly 150 feet away from the closest fans. As a result you could barely see performers without binoculars. …

By the time Haggard went on stage, the audience seemed ready to party, regardless of setting.

Though the quality of his recordings sagged in the late ’70s, Haggard rates with Nelson and Waylon Jennings as one of the three most important male artists to enter country music since the ’50s bonanza that produced such giants as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and George Jones.

The good news is that his work has rebounded this year, first with the wry “Misery & Gin” hit from “Bronco Billy” and now his new “Back to the Barrooms” album. Opening with “Misery & Gin” and two songs from the LP, Haggard was far more dynamic than in his journeyman-like Country Club appearance last March. …

He’s such a gifted and convincing singer that he still makes it work, but Nelson should consider revising things. He and the audience would benefit from a few surprises in what has become a familiar ritual.

Predictably, the evening’s strongest response came during Nelson’s outlaw-oriented tunes. As soon as the band went into “Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys,” most of those in the audience leaped to their feet, waving hats and celebrating. …

Haggard’s performance was recorded and released in the 1981 album “Rainbow Stew Live at Anaheim Stadium.”

Other performers at the Country Fall Festival included Alabama and Emmylou Harris.


Willie and the Wheel Austin City Limits (Full Concert)

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

Willie Nelson, Neil Young, Crazy Horse, “All Along the Watchtower” (Farm Aid 1994)

Monday, February 27th, 2017

Willie Nelson, Norah Jones, Wynton Marsalas, “Crying Time”

Sunday, February 26th, 2017

Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings, “Good Hearted Woman”

Saturday, February 25th, 2017

Willie Nelson sings, “American the Beautiful” (“America: A Tribute to Heroes” 2001)

Thursday, February 23rd, 2017


1. My City of Ruins – Bruce Springsteen
2. Love’s in Need of Love Today – Stevie Wonder/Take 6
3. Walk On – U2
4. There Will Come a Day – Faith Hill
5. I Won’t Back Down – Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
6. Hero – Enrique Iglesias
7. Imagine – Neil Young
8. Someday We’ll All Be Free – Alicia Keys
9. Wish You Were Here – Limp Bizkit/Johnny Rzeznik
10. New York State of Mind – Billy Joel

1. I Believe in Love – Dixie Chicks
2. Everyday – Dave Matthews
3. Redemption Song – Wyclef Jean
4. Hero – Mariah Carey
5. Livin’ on a Prayer – Bon Jovi
6. Safe and Sound – Sheryl Crow
7. Fragile – Sting
8. Long Road – Eddie Vedder
9. Bridge over Troubled Water – Paul Simon
10. God Bless America – C?line Dion
11. America the Beautiful – Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson and BB King on Saturday Night Live 1984

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams & Hank Williams III – Dead Flowers (Nashville, April 14, 2002)

Thursday, February 16th, 2017

Willie Nelson, Leon Russell, Bonnie Raitt, Maria Muldaur Bonnie Raitt, “Trouble in Mind”

Sunday, February 12th, 2017

Leon Russell Willie Nelson Maria Muldaur Bonnie Raitt