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Legacy Recordings is proud to announce the release of Band of Brothers, the new Willie Nelson studio album premiering 14 performances including nine brand-new songs composed by America's quintessential pop/country songwriter. Willie Nelson's Band of Brothers will be available Tuesday, June 17.
The much-anticipated successor To All The Girls... (which became Willie's first Top 10 album in more than three decades when it was released in October 2013) Band of Brothers is the artist's first album of predominately new original material in nearly two decades, debuting the master tunesmith's first major batch of newly-penned songs since his Spirit album in 1996."I got on kind of a writing kick," Willie Nelson said recently,"it's good to be writing again."
The influential songwriterwhose early successes brought pop and country together with unforgettable standards like "Crazy" (Patsy Cline), "Hello Walls" (Faron Young), "Funny How Time Slips Away" (Billy Walker), "Night Life" (Ray Price) and many othershas added nine new essential songs to his classic catalog. One of Willie's most personal albums to-date, the songs on Band of Brothers range from the introspective ("The Wall" and "Send Me a Picture") to the rollicking ("Wives and Girlfriends" and "Used To Her").
A new video for "The Wall," one of the key tracks on Band of Brothers, debuted exclusively on RollingStone.com."The Wall" audio track will be available at all digital stores beginning Tuesday, May 6 and will be available for immediate download for fans who pre-order Band of Brothers.
Rounding out the album are five songs, penned by others, which compliment and unite the album's sonic textures and lyric themes. Included are Willie's interpretations of Vince Gill's Whenever You Come Around", Billy Joe Shaver's "The Git Go" (a duet with Jamey Johnson) and the appropriately-titled "Songwriter," written by Gordie Sampson and Bill Anderson.
All 14 tracks on Band of Brothers are new recordings and none of the songs have been previously recorded by Willie Nelson.
Working again with producer Buddy Cannon, who helmed Willie's first three Legacy releases, and a band featuring Jim "Moose" Brown (keyboards), Eddie Bayers (drums), Kevin "Swine" Grantt (bass), Bobby Terry (guitar), Tommy White (steel guitar), Mickey Raphael (harmonica) and Trigger (Willie's guitar), Willie Nelson recorded the bulk of Band of Brothers during sessions at Sound Emporium Studios in Nashville with additional recording at Pedernales Studio, Austin, Texas and The Hit Factory Criteria, Miami, Florida. Recording sessions took place between October 2013 and March 2014.
"When all the songs have been written/When all of the music has played/When the curtain comes down we'll still be around/To make sure the musicians are paid, cause," Willie sings on the album's title track, an anthemic salute to the universal camaraderie of music and the uncompromising vision of a great American songwriter:
"We're a band of brothers and sisters and whatever
On a mission to break all the rules
And I know you love me 'cause I love you too
But you can't tell me what to do"
Willie Nelson/Band of Brothers - tracklisting
1. Bring It On (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
2. Guitar in the Corner (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
3. The Wall (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
4. Whenever You Come Around (Vince Gill/Pete Wasner)
5. Wives and Girlfriends (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
6. I Thought I Left You (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
7. Send Me a Picture (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
8. Used to Her (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
9. The Git Go (Billy Joe Shaver/Gary Nicholson)
10. Band of Brothers (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
11. Hard to Be an Outlaw (Billy Joe Shaver)
12. Crazy Like Me (Dennis Morgan/Shawn Camp/Billy Burnette)
13. The Songwriters (Gordie Sampson/Bill Anderson)
14. I've Got a Lot of Traveling to Do (Willie Nelson/Buddy Cannon)
A stunning diversity of artists have covered Willie's compositions, revealing the transformative range of his songwriting genius. Ray Price and B.B. King recorded versions of "Night Life." "Funny How Time Slips Away" was a 1964 R&B and pop hit for Joe Hinton. Elvis Presley recorded it, as did Al Green, Tom Jones, Perry Como, Georgie Fame and Bryan Ferry. In 1963 Roy Orbison made Willie's Christmas ballad "Pretty Paper" his own. George Jones and Merle Haggard had a hit duet with "Yesterday's Wine."
Esther Phillips gave "Hello Walls" an R&B treatment. For years, the late sportscaster Don Meredith occasionally sang Willie's "The Party's Over" during his commentary during ABC's Monday Night Football. Diana Krall recorded a jazz treatment of "Crazy," a tune later tackled by Chaka Khan. Jazz icon, Miles Davis, an admirer, composed an instrumental titled "Willie Nelson."