[Dixielandjazz] : Willie Nelson-Stardust; now "American Classic"

JBruno868 at aol.com JBruno868 at aol.com
Mon Aug 24 09:32:48 PDT 2009

It's one of my all time Fav's as they say. I think I've  had the album, 
cassette and 2 CD's over the years as I do listen to it often and  a copy is in 
my car stereo. I remember well when it came out in the late 70's  was a 
great time in my life so it also brings back good memories.
Jazz Hugs
Judie & Fred, she likes it
In a message dated 8/24/2009 7:11:18 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time,  
nvickers1 at cox.net writes:

To:   Musicians and jazzfans 
From:  Bob Laird and Norman 
Jazzfan  Bob Laird of  Macomb, IL writes re Willie Nelson 

From: Bob Laird  [mailto:boblaird1 at comcast.net] 
Sent: Sunday, August 23, 2009 10:00  PM
To: Norm Vickers
Subject: Willie  Nelson-Stardust

I bought Willie Nelson's "Stardust" disc when it first became available in  
this area. "Georgia on My Mind" and "September Song" are just two songs on 
the  disc that are excellent.
I also  have "Georgia on My Mind" by Ray Charles and "September Song" by 
Frank Sinatra  and Jazz at Lincoln Center with Willie and Wynton  Marsalis.  
All good.

Bob  Laird 
Norman  writes: Thanks.  I remember that one too.  I think the story went  
with that one, someone came to Willie with the idea and Willie said go with  
Looked  like the arranger likely was only time that he worked with Willie.  
There  was a review of Willie’s new Jazz standard in today’s NYTimes.  
Here is  the review. 
August 24,  2009 
Critics’  Choice 
New CDs: Willie Nelson  
“American Classic”
(Blue Note) 
A  little more than 30 years ago Willie Nelson released “Stardust,” an 
album of  standards largely culled from what’s now identified as the Great 
American  Songbook. Produced by Booker T. Jones, it was a spare and mellow 
meditation  and a casual stroke of genius. Mr. Nelson, backed by regular 
partners, yielded  no part of himself to the material, showing a plain and honest 
respect. He  made the songs sound prized but approachable, broken-in.   
“American  Classic,” Mr. Nelson’s new album, follows the lineage of “
Stardust” in one  sense, with a menu of songbook fare. But in another sense it 
feels like a  capitulation. Its sound is lustrous, its personnel impeccable. 
What’s missing  is the sense of conviction that Mr. Nelson brings to his 
strongest work.  Having long ago proved that the songbook was open to all 
manner of  interpretation, he appears here in formal attire as the latest agent 
of a  long-term trend: the standardization of the American  standard. 
Of  course a strict sequel to “Stardust” — his most successful album, with 
more  than five million copies sold — would have been pure folly. But it’s 
 alarmingly easy to picture many of the songs on “American Classic” 
without Mr.  Nelson, and with someone else in his place. The album’s producer, 
Tommy  LiPuma, has worked closely with _Diana  Krall_ 
throughout her major-label career, and if you have some idea of the  sound 
of her recordings, you know the velvet cushion supporting Mr. Nelson  here. 
Rod Stewart should have been so lucky. 
What  redeems much of “American Classic” is the singularity of Mr. Nelson’
s voice,  along with the deceptive shrewdness of his singing. His tone on “
The Nearness  of You,” which opens the album with a gloss of strings, adds a 
dash of bitters  to an otherwise cloying cocktail. On “Come Rain or Come 
Shine” and “I Miss You  So,” both set at a lope, his phrasing feels 
conversational but also subtly  dramatic. On “Always on My Mind,” which closes the 
album pointedly — one of  Mr. Nelson’s best-loved songs, it’s now a standard 
too — he leans ahead of the  beat and lags behind it, giving the lyrics a 
spontaneous air.   
And  it’s instructive to hear Mr. Nelson alongside a pair of younger duet 
partners,  even if their presence is a mild distraction. Ms. Krall, joining 
him on “If I  Had You,” fails to find the tricky current that he’s riding, 
and the result  feels forced. _Norah  Jones_ 
(http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/j/norah_jones/index.html?inline=nyt-per) , on 
the other hand, meets him all the way on “Baby, It’s Cold  Outside.” The 
crackle of their chemistry overrides the triteness of the song  choice — 
underscoring just how much vitality Mr. Nelson still brings to the  table, if only 
given the chance.  

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