Stars & Guitars

Stars & Guitars

by Willie NelsonWillie Nelson


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Recorded live at the Ryman Auditorium for a USA Network broadcast, Stars & Guitars shows off the eclectic nature of Willie Nelson's musical approach, bringing him together with songs and artists from both within and outside the country realm. Although the emphasis here is on entertainment value, most of the performances -- especially Willie's -- nonetheless mine some rich emotional territory. Ray Price joins his longtime compadre for a mesmerizing duet on Willie's classic blues "Night Life," which kicks off a sequence of powerful numbers. First, a stomping, countrified take on the Stones' "Dead Flowers," with Keith Richards (you shall know him by the sound of his guitar), Ryan Adams, and Hank Williams III (you shall know him by his surly attitude) sending up celebratory verses and soaring, harmonized choruses. That's followed by the wistful ballad "Lonestar," which Norah Jones belts out of the park with an aching blue-eyed soul vocal that's the perfect foil for Willie's lonesome, weathered tenor, and a reading of Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" notable both for the lullaby-like delicacy of Aaron Neville and Willie's tender vocals and the jazzy, small-combo support behind them. Nelson's expressiveness rescues the Latin-flavored up-tempo number "Maria (Shut Up and Kiss Me)" and the evergreen heartbreaker "Always on My Mind" from the less accomplished singing of, respectively, Rob Thomas and Jon Bon Jovi, but no such heroics are required when Willie teams up with the likes of Lee Ann Womack on the booming pop production of "Mendocino Country Line" or with Patty Griffin on a haunting reading of "Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground." Vince Gill, Emmylou Harris, Toby Keith, and Sheryl Crow all have moments to be proud of, too, and Willie is right there with them, in voice, in spirit, and with some pretty tough guitar picking to boot.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/05/2002
Label: Lost Highway
UPC: 0008817034027
catalogNumber: 170340

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Willie Nelson   Primary Artist
Billy Gene English   Percussion
Mickey Raphael   Harmonica
Bill Evans   Saxophone
Richard Bennett   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Jim Cox   Keyboards
Chad Cromwell   Drums
Dan Dugmore   Acoustic Guitar,Steel Guitar
Paul English   Snare Drums
Kim Fleming   Background Vocals
Vicki Hampton   Background Vocals
Jackie King   Guitar
Jody Payne   Guitar,Background Vocals
Bee Spears   Bass
Glenn Worf   Bass
Bobbie Nelson   Piano
Robert Bailey   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Ed Bruce   Composer
Willie Nelson   Composer
Steve Stills   Composer
Johnny Bush   Composer
Thom Cadley   Engineer
Frank Callari   Producer
James Stroud   Producer
Hank Williams   Composer
Glenn Worf   Musical Director
Rob Thomas   Composer
Jim Kemp   Art Direction
Bobby Lemmons   Engineer
Jeb Brien   Producer
Paul Stroud   Composer
Patsy Bruce   Composer
Allen Kelman   Producer
Gloria Medel   Producer
Mark Rothbaum   Executive Producer
Tony Faske   Producer
Greg Lankford   Engineer
Poodie Locke   Stage Manager
Lee Alexander   Composer

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