Chet Atkins Tribute Album Features Clapton, Gill and Krauss

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Chet Atkins Archival Photo: Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

The late guitarist, Chet Atkins, the most recorded solo instrumentalist in music history, is the subject of tribute album from many fellow legends for the centennial of his birth. We Still Can’t Say Good Bye: A Musicians’ Tribute to Chet Atkins, featuring such performers as Eric Clapton, Vince Gill, James Taylor, and Alison Krauss, arrived on April 19, 2024, via Morningstar Music. The 15-track set is available to order on CD and vinyl here and as a CD with a “Making-of” DVD here. Listen to several tracks below.

From the announcement: Atkins, born June 20, 1924, traveled far to become “Mr. Guitar” as his journey took him from Appalachian poverty to international acclaim. He was a 14x Grammy Award winner, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement recipient, and a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Country Music Hall of Fame inductee.

Now, for the very first time on one album, many of the music world’s best join together to pay a musicians’ tribute to the innovator, songwriter, producer, record company executive and visionary. We Still Can’t Say Good Bye was produced by country and bluegrass musician and songwriter and 3x Grammy-winning producer and guitarist Carl Jackson.

Listen to “How’s the World Treating You,” featuring Taylor and Krauss

“Mentoring and encouraging people is something that Chet always did,” says Tommy Emmanuel, one of five people ever named a C.G.P. (Certified Guitar Player) by Atkins. “I try to do this thing with Gareth (Pearson) and I try to do the same with all young people. I encourage them to do things that I learned from Chet. I hope that somewhere somehow, I showed somebody something because of him that changed their life and made their life better. Cause he sure did that for me.”

Listen to “Mr. Guitar,” performed by Emmanuel, the Grammy Award-winning guitarist with the Grammy-winning bluegrass fiddler Michael Cleveland

The Making of A Musicians’ Tribute to Chet Atkins and his Legacy Remembered is airing exclusively for three months on CMT.

“So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)” is performed by Vince Gill and Bradley Walker featuring Eric Clapton.

“Freight Train” is credited to the Chester Bees. See the lineup below.

We Still Can’t Say Good Bye: A Musicians’ Tribute to Chet Atkins Track Listing

1. Mr. Guitar: Tommy Emmanuel C.G.P. & Michael Cleveland
2. Lover Come Back To Me: Brent Mason
3. Alley Cat: Ashley Campbell & Thor Jensen
4. So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad): Vince Gill & Bradley Walker featuring Eric Clapton
5. Yakety Axe: Ricky Skaggs with Charlie McCoy
6. Sleepwalk: Jerry Douglas & Bryan Sutton
7. In His Hands: Carl Jackson
8. Mr. Sandman: Gareth Pearson
9. Windy And Warm: Brad Paisley
10. How’s The World Treating You: James Taylor & Alison Krauss
11. Caravan: Guthrie Trapp
12. All I Ever Need Is You: Sierra Hull
13. The Entertainer: John Knowles C.G.P. with Catherine Marx
14. I Still Can’t Say Goodbye: Vince Gill
15. Freight Train: The Chester Bees
(Campbell, Clapton, Emmanuel, Gill, Hull, Jackson, Jensen, Knowles, Mason, Moore, Paisley, Pearson, Skaggs, Sutton and Trapp)

Atkins died at age 77 at his Nashville, Tenn. home on June 30, 2001.

Watch Atkins perform on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in 1973

Related: Our review of the 2023 edition of Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival

Best Classic Bands Staff

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