Willie Nelson And Sons Perform Frank Sinatra’s “A Cottage For Sale”

by; Michael Broerman

Last month, Willie Nelson released his 71st album, That’s Life, a covers compilation comprised entirely of songs made famous by Frank Sinatra. On Friday, the 87-year-old country star shared a live performance video of the Sinatra hidden gem “A Cottage For Sale”, performed alongside his sons Lukas and Micah.

While it might be easy to react to a Willie Nelson cover of a Frank Sinatra song with skepticism, their distinct styles blend together surprisingly well. As Nelson noted with the announcement of That’s Life, “I learned a lot about phrasing listening to Frank. He didn’t worry about behind the beat or in front of the beat, or whatever — he could sing it either way, and that’s the feel you have to have.”

Fittingly, this performance of “A Cottage For Sale”—first written in 1929 and released 30 years later on Ol’ Blues Eyes’ No One Cares album—finds that very same “behind the beat” styling at work. In addition to the depressing reality of the song’s lyrics describing a once love-filled cottage now derived of any emotional warmth, the swing-and-waltzes backing of Lukas’ Promise of the Real bandmates make the Sinatra rarity sound like it could be a Nelson original. The Red Headed Stranger himself appeared to be happy with the take as well, as he can be heard saying “that was a good one” at the end of the video.

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