Archive for the ‘Willie Nelson covers’ Category

Linda Bull To Perform The Songs of Willie Nelson

Thursday, July 12th, 2018

“The reason I love Willie Nelson is simple: when he sings, I believe him. I share his love of a good melody and relate to his tales of loneliness and heartbreak but also to his optimism, longevity and no nonsense approach”.

Linda Bull

Linda Bull, one half of the luminous Bull Sisters, stars in a new, collaborative show featuring the songs of the Red Headed Stranger.

Willie Nelson’s classic 1978 album, Stardust, is an unforgettable collection of pop standards reworked in Willie’s inimitable way and produced by Memphis legend, Booker T Jones. The album charted for ten years, achieved quadruple platinum certification, and won Willie a Grammy Award for his soul filled rendition of Georgia on my Mind.

Linda Bull is one of Australia’s most soulful vocalists and interpreter of songs in her own right as well as being a big Willie Nelson fan. Her special guest vocalist, Sime Nugent, has toured nationally and internationally throughout Australia, Europe and America and released more than a dozen albums with a range of bands in his 20 year career including indie folk duo Sweet Jean and three time ARIA nominated band, The Wilson Pickers.

Channeling Willie and capturing the essence of the songs from Stardust, Linda and Sime will take audiences on a journey through this timeless album including ‘Georgia On My Mind’, ‘All Of Me’ and ‘Unchained Melody’, together with a selection of hand-picked Shotgun Willie signature songs including ‘Always On My Mind’, ‘Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain’, ‘Crazy’, ‘On the Road Again’, ‘Help Me Make It Through the Night’ and many more.

Backed by The Red Headed Strangers, a superb band lead by Cameron Bruce (MD/keys) and featuring some of Australia’s most in demand musicians including Shane Reilly (guitar/pedal steel), Bill McDonald (bass) and Pete Luscombe (drums), as well as special guest Sime Nugent (guitar) who’ll share vocal duties on the night, this will be a must-see show for every music fan.

For 30 years, the glorious voice of Linda Bull has comprised one of the most distinctive, versatile and emotionally charged sounds on the Australian music landscape. Since a multi- platinum conquest of pop radio with The Black Sorrows in the late 1980s, Linda has forged a diverse pathway into soul, gospel, blues, country and the island music of her Tongan ancestry.

Her rich solo vocals and instinctive harmonies have spawned eight albums with her sister Vika, as well as studio and concert performances with Paul Kelly, Kasey Chambers, RocKwiz and C.W. Stoneking. Linda is currently working with Vika on their first album of original material in 18 years.

Tickets for this limited run of Stardust: The Songs of Willie Nelson go on sale at 12 noon tomorrow, Friday, 13 July

Stardust: The Songs of Willie Nelson
Performed by Linda Bull
With special guest, Sime Nugent

Arts Centre Melbourne Playhouse
Thursday, 30 August 2018
Friday, 31 August 2018
Saturday, 1 September 2018

Tickets on sale from 12 noon, Friday, 13 July from the venue | 1300 182 183

Another Willie Nelson cover, Clint Black sings, “Time of the Preacher”

Monday, July 9th, 2018

Thank you Steve Eschenberg for sharing this video of Clint Black channeling Willie Nelson.

Another Willie Nelson Cover: Dallas Wayne, “Blame It On The Times”

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018
by:  Stirling Whitaker

Dallas Wayne is releasing a follow-up to his collection of classic country covers, and he’s sharing his thoughts on one of the tracks exclusively with Taste of Country readers.

Wayne is a singer-songwriter and the host of SiriusXM Willie’s Roadhouse and Outlaw Country. In the clip above, hear Wayne’s interpretation of “Blame It on the Times,” a song Willie Nelson wrote in 1961 and released in 1978 on his Face of a Fighter album. Wayne puts an even more traditional country slant on his interpretation of Nelson’s song, which appears on Songs the Jukebox Taught Me, Volume 2.

Wayne released the first volume of his covers collection in 2016. “I couldn’t do Volume 2 without putting another Willie Nelson song on the album,” he says in the clip above. “We tried to find something that hadn’t been done to death before, [and] we came across ‘Blame It on the Times.’ I remembered the song when it was originally recorded as kind of a calypso-type beat. We straightened it back out into a country shuffle, and I think it works pretty well.”

Nelson himself has praised Wayne’s new cover of his old song, saying, “Thanks for bringing this one back! Also, I love the Vern Gosdin cover, ‘Is It Raining at Your House.’ Remember our motto: If It Ain’t Broke, Break It.”

Wayne undertook the covers projects as a labor of love. He says the second volume “represents a continuing journey back to the songs that made me fall in love with classic country music. Together with the previous Songs the Jukebox Taught Me project, this collection of 25 songs is a tribute to the songwriters who crafted them, and the artists who sang them — the heroes and teachers who taught me this music.”

Songs the Jukebox Taught Me, Volume 2 is set for release on June 22. It is currently available for pre-order.

For more information about Dallas Wayne’s projects and up upcoming tour dates, please visit his official website.

Another Willie Nelson cover

Saturday, February 10th, 2018


Judy Johnson Dixon

“Gabriel wanted to match his dad so Jerry changed his shirt to match. Then of course they sang On the Road Again. They’re awesome!”

Patsy Cline sing’s Willie Nelson’s “Crazy” on Grand Ole Opry debut (Feb 7, 1962)

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

Another Willie Nelson cover and tribute: Raul Malo, ‘Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain’

Saturday, December 16th, 2017

Another Willie Nelson Cover: Pretty Paper, by Roy Orbison

Friday, December 15th, 2017

“Pretty Paper” is a song written by country music singer-songwriter Willie Nelson in 1963. After being signed to Monument Records, Nelson played the song for producer Fred Foster. Foster pitched the song to Roy Orbison, who turned it into a hit. Nelson recorded his own version of the song in November 1964.

Written by Willie Nelson, the song tells the story of a street vendor who, during the holiday season, sells pencils and paper on the streets.   In October 1963, while walking in his farm in Ridgetop, Tennessee, Nelson was inspired to write the song after he remembered a man he often saw while he lived in Fort Worth, Texas. The man had his legs amputated and moved with rollers, selling paper and pencils in front of Leonard’s Department Store. To attract the attention of the people, the man announced, “Pretty paper! Pretty paper!”

In 2013, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram identified the man as Frankie Brierton, of Santo, Texas. Brierton refused to use a wheelchair, choosing instead to crawl, as he learned to move while growing up after his legs were affected by a spinal disorder. Brierton sold pencils in Fort Worth, Dallas and Houston.

Willie Nelson, along with David Ruiz, incorporated the song’s story into a book.

Santa Willie Delivers a "Pretty" Holiday Tale

Blue Rider Press

Pretty Paper: A Christmas Tale

By Willie Nelson with David Ritz
Blue Rider Press, 304 pp., $23

Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue
Wrap your presents to your darling from you
Pretty pencils to write “I love you”
Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue


Another Willie Nelson cover, “I Never Cared for You”, by Alison Krauss

Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

Another Willie Nelson cover — Brandi Carlisle and Amos Lee, “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain”

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Another Willie Nelson cover: Alison Krauss, “I Never Cared For You”

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Another Willie Nelson cover, “Ain’t it Funny, how time slips away”, by Jim James

Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James is releasing a sequel to his 2009 EP, Tribute To, which featured six George Harrison covers. Tribute To 2 is another covers album, but this time to a variety of artists, including The Beach Boys, Sonny & Cher, WIllie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Emerson Lake & Palmer, and more. His cover of The Beach Boys’ “I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times” is out now, and it stays pretty true to the original but throws in some new tricks. It’s got orchestral backing, triumphant horns, and Jim James doing a nice impression of Brian Wilson’s vocal style.

The album will be out December 8 via ATO, and that same day he’ll also reissue Tribute To, which features another Bob Dylan cover as a bonus track. You can see the tracklists for both releases below.

Meanwhile, My Morning Jacket have upcoming shows, including a New Year’s Eve run in Colorado and One Big Holiday in the Dominican Republic.

Tribute To 2 – Track Listing
1. I Just Wasn’t Made for These Times —- by The Beach Boys
2. Baby Don’t Go —- by Sonny & Cher
3. Wild Honey —- by Diane Izzo
4. Midnight, the Stars and You —- by Ray Noble & Al Bowlly
5. Crying in the Chapel —- by The Orioles
6. Funny How Time Slips Away —- by Willie Nelson
7. Love is the Sweetest Thing —- by Ray Noble & Al Bowlly
8. I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight —- by Bob Dylan
9. Lucky Man —- by Emerson, Lake & Palmer
10. The World is Falling Down —- by Abbey Lincoln
11. Blue Skies —- by Irving Berlin
Tribute To – Reissue Track Listing
1. Long, Long, Long —- by George Harrison
2. Behind That Locked Door —- by George Harrison
3. Love You To —- by George Harrison
4. My Sweet Lord —- by George Harrison
5. Ballad of Sir Frankie Crisp (Let It Roll) —- by George Harrison
6. All Things Must Pass —- by George Harrison
7. If Not For You [Bonus Track] —- by Bob Dylan

Another Willie Nelson cover: Kenny Neal, “Ain’t it Funny, How Time Slips Away”

Tuesday, October 10th, 2017

Jazzy Willie Nelson covers, by Gabrielle Stravelli

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017
by: Shari Lifland

Why would an Italian jazz singer from Staten Island and New Jersey create a show that celebrates the music of a country legend from Texas? Gabrielle Stravelli shared the story behind her love for Willie Nelson’s music during her recent show at New York City’s Birdland Jazz Club: It all started yers ago when her sister took her to hear Nelson at the Garden State Arts center in Holmdel, New Jersey. They were sitting in the cheap seats, way up on the hill. Willie sang “Always on My Mind,” she began crying, and a lifelong fan girl was born.

Stravelli’s Birdland performance on September 24 marked the debut of her salute to Nelson, aptly titled “City Girl, Country Boy.” Each of the 14 songs in the set was written, co-written and/or recorded by the legendary artist. From the moment she first burst on to the stage with an up tempo medley of “Lady Luck” and “If You’ve Got the Money, I’ve Got the Time,” Stravelli, a petite dynamo in a chic black pantsuit accented by a large silver and turquoise statement necklace, engaged and enthralled the audience with her clear, self-assured voice and warm, infectious smile. Above all, Stravelli is a singer who honors the lyrics. Willie Nelson once described country music as “Three chords and the truth.” Stravelli gets that and she brilliantly conveys the emotional truth—whether joy, or in the case of so many country tunes, heartbreak—behind each song.

Stravelli’s second number was “Butterfly,” a ballad from Nelson’s 72nd studio album, the 2017 God’s Problem Child, and it was a show highlight. Her rendition was slow, twangy, and poignant, conveying the wistfulness of the lyrics: “Butterfly, do you ever get to stay? Or do you always fly away? Pretty butterfly. I have held you with tender, gentle hands. But you’re complicated, and I don’t understand.” Accompanied by Scott Robinson’s lilting flute, the song created a sweet, moving moment.

The song choices in “City Girl, Country Girl” spanned over five decades of Nelson’s work, with the above-mentioned “Butterfly” as the most recent, back to one of his earliest, lesser-known tunes, “Three Days” (released in 1962). Stravelli’s version, underscored by terrific solos on the drums (Eric Halvorson) and sax (Scott Robinson), was as bluesy as it gets, the perfect choice for the tune’s “I got it bad”-type lyrics: “Three days that I hate to see arrive; Three days that I dread to be alive; Three days filled with tears and sorrow; Yesterday today and tomorrow.”

Two additional highlights of the Birdland show were a pair of Nelson’s best known, most popular songs, the beloved Hoagy Carmichael standard “Stardust” and the honky tonky favorite “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow up to be Cowboys.” Stravelli’’s “Stardust” was a pivotal moment in “City Girl, Country Boy.” It began with her singing in a slow, bluesy, a cappella, accompanied only by her luminous smile and almost rhapsodic facial expression. Then Robinson joined in with a gorgeous, audience-pleasing sax solo. “Stardust,” one of Willie Nelson’s most celebrated performances, provided the title song for the quintuple platinum 1978 crossover album of jazz standards that launched him to genre-defying superstardom. Later in the show, Stravelli put a very personal spin on “Mamas…”—a very fast, upbeat, jazzy version that included extensive, joyful scatting and a inging sax solo that got the audience on its feet. The band seemed to enjoy playing the number as much as the audience enjoyed bopping along.

Stravelli closed the show with the tune that brought her to tears years before as a young girl in New Jersey—Nelson’s most recorded song, “Always on My Mind” (written by Johnny Christopher, Mark James and Wayne Carson). Accompanied only by Joshua Richman on piano, Stravelli once again showcased her ability to honor the lyrics, artfully conveying the sentiment behind the words, as many audience members quietly sang along:

“Maybe I didn’t hold you All those lonely, lonely times I guess I never told you I’m so happy that you’re mine

Little things I should have said and done I just never took the time But you were always on my mind You were always on my mind”

R&B legend Otis Redding once gave the following advice to his fellow singers: “Always think different from the next person. Don’t ever do a song as you heard somebody else do it.” Performing works closely identified with as legendary an artist as Willie Nelson comes with a great risk of trying (and perhaps failing) to recreate the popular originals. However, for a true artist, the challenge is to use the original work as a starting point, as a canvas on which to paint one’s own creative vision. In “City Girl, Country Boy,” Gabrielle Stravelli, a brilliantly talented artist in her own right, succeeds in creating completely new works of art while honoring Nelson’s achievements.

Musicians accompanying Stravelli in “City Girl, Country Boy” were: Joshua Richman (piano), Pat O’Leary (bass/musical director/arranger), Eric Halvorson (drums), and Scott Robinson (Woodwinds).

Gabrielle Stravelli’s most recent album is Dream Ago, featuring her original songs, available on the Big Modern Music label. For more information:

Birdland Jazz Club is located at 315 West 44th Street in New York.

Another Willie Nelson cover, The Spinners, “Ain’t it Funny How Time Slips Away”

Wednesday, July 19th, 2017