Willie Nelson: 70th Studio Album, All-Star Concert Special

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Willie Nelson’s 70th solo studio album, First Rose of Spring, has been moved to July 3. The LP, his 14th for Sony Music’s Legacy Recordings, was originally scheduled to be released on April 24, just before his 87th birthday on April 29. Listen to several tracks below.

In addition, A&E will air Willie Nelson: American Outlaw on April 12 at 10 p.m. ET, a concert special filmed in January 2019. The star-studded lineup includes performances by Nelson, Alison Krauss, Emmylou Harris, Chris Stapleton, Sheryl Crow, Dave Matthews, Steve Earle, Kris Kristofferson, George Strait, Norah Jones, Lukas Nelson, John Mellencamp, Susan Tedeschi & Derek Trucks, Vince Gill, and more.

Watch the concert special’s teaser clip

On March 19, with his tour temporarily suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Nelson, along with sons Lukas and Micah, live streamed a performance of several songs.

Watch Lukas Nelson and brother Micah, while proud papa watches

First Rose of Spring follows Nelson’s recent Grammy Award for 2020 Best Country Solo Performance–his 10th overall, not including his Grammy Legend and Lifetime Achievement Awards–for “Ride Me Back Home,” the title track from his 2019 album. The previous year, My Way, Nelson’s musical homage to Frank Sinatra took home the Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.

Nelson collaborated again with longtime friend and producer Buddy Cannon. The original artwork was created by Willie’s son Micah.

From the album’s original Feb. 21 announcement: In addition to his own new compositions on the album which he wrote with Cannon, Nelson covers a variety of pop and country songwriters and performers, interpreting songs penned by Toby Keith (“Don’t Let the Old Man In”), Billy Joe Shaver (“We Are the Cowboys”) and Pete Graves (“Just Bummin’ Around” – a song recorded by Jimmy Dean, Dean Martin and others).

The album also features “Our Song,” a new composition by contemporary country music hitmaker Chris Stapleton.

Willie Nelson – First Rose Of Spring Track Listing
First Rose of Spring (Randy Houser, Allen Shamblin & Mark Beeson)
Blue Star (Willie Nelson & Buddy Cannon)
I’ll Break Out Again Tonight (Sanger “Whitey” Shafer & Doodle Owens)
Don’t Let the Old Man In (Toby Keith)
Just Bummin’ Around (Pete Graves)
Our Song (Chris Stapleton)
We Are the Cowboys (Billy Joe Shaver)
Stealing Home (Marla Cannon-Goodman, Casey Beathard & Don Sampson)
I’m the Only Hell My Mama Ever Raised (Wayne Kemp, Bobby Borchers & Mack Vickery)
Love Just Laughed (Willie Nelson & Buddy Cannon)
Yesterday When I Was Young (Hier Encore) (Charles Aznavour & Herbert Kretzmer)

Nelson has a typically busy concert calendar in 2020, though many spring dates have been postponed due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Tickets are available here.

Listen to the title track from First Rose of Spring

Related: Listings for 100s of classic rock tours

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