Feel free to use this space to discuss the new album by Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis:
Two Men With The Blues
As much as I love Wynton I am going to take a pass on this one.
Man, check it out…if you like Wynton’s stuff, this is still in the game…don’t be closed minded of something that might be interesting, I hated country music for a loooooong time…until I got past my “middle class” prejudices…(actually it was just that fake “twang”...hate the twang!) and actually heard the blues harmony , musicianship and real stories of the best of the music….that and listening to an hour of Wynton at a Cracker Barrel singing along with old Hank Williams songs….
Which ones was he singing?
I have no idea, as I have never checked that music out…however, he knew the words to every song that came over the PA system…he said that one of the great myths of race is that black folks didn’t listen to country music…as a boy he spent summers at his Aunt’s house (maybe his great uncle as well…) and the music of choice for them, on the radio, was country and western..it was crazy, he knew the words to everything….!!
Hmmm, singing over biscuits and grits.
Yass yass and some fried okra…
These sides are killin!!!! I actually had one of the pre release copies next month. I ordered the LP as well..I LOVE VINYL!!!! Anyway, everyone should check this out. I HATE Country music, but this is NOT COUNTRY MUSIC….IT’s Roots Baby Roots…and swing!!!!
Don’t forget to watch Leno tonight!!
Willie, Wynton, Blanding, Carlos, Dan, and Ali. (Oh, and the harmonica guy.)
WWB and the unstoppable three.
“Sad”. A big disappointment. I haven’t seen the Tonight Show for a long, long time. I now remember why I stopped watching it…the writer’s are not funny. The band is way below par and the guests are not interesting. To wait for over an hour to hear Wynton & Willie wasn’t that bad. But to hear their introduction and then watch the credits roll across their faces was an insult. Willie’s and Wynton’s collaboration of musical styles and cultures are way more interesting than anything Kathy Griffin could have spewed out. (Although I sensed that Jay Leno was more than annoyed with Ms. Griffin and the interview.) NBC should be ashamed and embarrassed.
As for the band, I’m sure that the gig was a “hit and run”. But I really expected more of a statement from Willie’s performance AND from Wynton’s solo. I felt like Willie was uncertain about the order of things. And I felt that Wynton was trying to deliver a 64 bar speech in 16 measures. It just didn’t communicate to me like the album does. It’s a great album…a MUST for the music enthusiast and student. But the Tonight Show was not a good launching vehicle.
But it’s Wynton and Willie; Two “bigger-than-life-giants”. A forward thinking, entertaining and futuristic combination…...Kind of the “sweet and sour” of “Country BlueJazz”. (Not Blue Grass…..BlueJASS!)
The project will be a success as it is.
Check Willie and Wynton rendition of Georgia on My Mind, live at Jazz at Lincoln Center on January 2007.
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This video is part of the upcoming DVD to be out on Fall 2008.
We’ll soon publish a trailer through our iTunes podcast.
Stay tuned please.
Great footage! I’m looking forward to the DVD.
Check out what the critics have been saying about Two Men with the Blues:
“...a smart and heartfelt record…”
-The New York Times
“Marsalis and Nelson establish common musical ground that encompasses country, Dixieland, Tin Pan Alley and jump blues. Nelson’s idiosyncratic phrasing as a singer and a guitarist sets the tone, then the Marsalis quintet finds the groove and elevates it.”
“There’s a newcomer to the jazz scene by the name of Willie Nelson. Prediction: He’s going to be big. His distinctive phrasing and easy delivery make him a natural jazz vocalist… Marsalis and company mesh with their vocalist beautifully. Marsalis is in top form as a soloist…”
“[Two Men with the Blues] has an indolent charm…”
“Willie and Wynton may seem like an odd couple, but this live disc makes the country legend and jazz master sound like natural partners…with Marsalis’ usual horn-fronted band doing the driving and Nelson settling in perfectly with his off-beat vocal phrasing.”
“Willie Nelson’s relaxed talk-singing is so distinctive, and so naturally lovely…that falling back on its pleasures might be inevitable. But this collaboration on 10 bluesy standards…lures him out of his comfort zone. A trumpet-anchored jazz combo swings Nelson’s smoothness into new directions.”
“Two Men with the Blues is an inspired if unlikely pairing that brings together Southern gentlemen of two different stripes… Nelson’s singing is, as always, half-spoken, occasionally meandering and spot-on. And Marsalis’ trumpet is startlingly warm and rugged.”
“The pairing of the grizzled country star and the suave jazz master is an unmitigated, ear-tickling success… Ten exuberant, tender, casually elegant tracks… The ensemble sparkles with virtuosity, ingenuity, and gleeful repartee.”
“...a frolicsome step outside the norm for both of its stars. Willie sounds so comfortable singing-and soloing on guitar-with the Dixieland-meets-Ellington jazz combo, he could be in a Texas roadhouse instead of Lincoln Center. And Wynton has a blast going back to jazz-and blues-basics.”
“Nothing could be more appropriate for America’s Independence Day than this flawless pairing of American musical icons Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis doing the most American of music forms, jazz. This album can stand up to anything in their vast catalogs. Nelson’s behind-the-beat singing style has always owed an allegiance to the jazz idiom… Marsalis has seldom sounded this relaxed, lively and fun.”
Whitney wants to say something:
I was on the Tonight Show years back and I must say in many ways it has changed. However, regarding Willie and Wynton’s performance….I’ll say Willie first, to give age and experience respect: Trust me, knowing music like I do, and these musicians, Willie knew exactly what was going on and he was giving eye signals to musicians. It’s not always about how hard, loud or how many trills one does to make a statement. In blues and jazz, it’s the WAY you give improvisation that makes the statement. Listen for the way they play the FEELING of soul, country, blues, and jazz. This is one of the first times this kind of project has ever been done, so when listening with fresh ears, you are not the one to criticize, Gordie.
That’s all now from Whitney.
A behind the scenes for the new album: