Two Men with the Blues

Two Men with the Blues

by Willie Nelson, Wynton Marsalis


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The event was simply billed as “Willie Nelson Sings the Blues,” but the historic two-night stand on January 12 and 13, 2007 at Jazz at Lincoln Center was far more than that. Call it a summit meeting between two American icons, Willie Nelson & Wynton Marsalis, two of the most significant figures in modern-day country and jazz, who discovered common ground in their love for jazz standards and the blues. Their performance stirred the sounds of New Orleans, Nashville, Austin and New York City into a brilliantly programmed mix that was equal parts down-home and cosmopolitan, with plenty of swing and just a touch of melancholy. To say that these shows were a hot ticket would be an understatement. Luckily, the tapes were rolling and the results of this unique collaboration now constitute the Blue Note album Two Men With The Blues for everyone who couldn’t cram into The Allen Room.

Says Nelson, “These songs, heard this way with this group—that’s never been done before. Whatever I’m doing, if you put Wynton and these guys around it, that brings it up to a different level.” Among the other tracks featured in the set are Nelson’s own “Rainy Day Blues” and renditions of Spencer Williams’s “Basin Street Blues” and Clarence Williams’s “My Bucket’s Got a Hole In It.” That one features an exuberant arrangement redolent of New Orleans brass bands, with an extended percussion break and great vocal repartee between Nelson and Marsalis. The group climaxes the set with the high-spirited gospel groove of “That’s All.” Judging by all the exuberant hoots and hollers from the crowd, the band was truly testifying; listeners at home should feel free to join in, as long as the neighbors won’t mind.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/08/2008
Label: Blue Note Records
UPC: 5099950445424
catalogNumber: 04454

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Willie Nelson   Primary Artist,Guitar,Vocals
Wynton Marsalis   Primary Artist,Trumpet,Vocals
Mickey Raphael   Harmonica
Walter Blanding   Saxophone
Carlos Henríquez   Bass,Upright Bass
Ali Muhammed Jackson   Drums
Dan Nimmer   Piano

Technical Credits

Willie Nelson   Composer
Merle Travis   Composer
Walt Breeland   Composer
Clarence Williams   Composer
Spencer Williams   Composer
Carla Leighton   Art Direction
Fleecie Moore   Composer
Rob Macomber   Engineer
Mark Rothbaum   Executive Producer
John Mark Harris   Engineer
Jeff Jones   Remixing

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Two Men with the Blues 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
glauver More than 1 year ago
I must disagree somewhat with the AMG reviewer. While it is hard to fault individual songs, the project could have used a few more than the two up-tempo numbers it contains. Willie has one of the jazzier guitar styles in popular music. However, he seems to keep it under wraps here and that also nudges the proceedings toward the bland. I am happy to own it but I can't give it 4 or 5 stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a Willie Nelson fan so this of course is just my opinion. I love this cd. I like Winton and figured with Willie it should be good. I was not disappointed.
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