I think I’ve mentioned on here how far behind I am when it comes to listening to the cds that show up in my mailbox. It had gotten so bad that there was a box of unlistened cds that I packed when we moved (7 months ago) and still had not touched since. So, I did the only thing I could think of. I hired my friends as ninebullets interns and started handing out stacks of cds. The instructions were simple. Listen and if you think I’d like it then give it back. Otherwise, it’s yours. One of the cds that came back was Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis’ album, Two Men With The Blues, with a simple sentence written across the cover in Sharpie…

“What’s not to like?”

What’s not to like, indeed. I’ll be honest, on my best days I’m only lukewarm towards Willie Nelson. I’ll listen if it’s on, but I don’t ever reach for any Willie if left to my own devices. That said, this album will have a permanent place in my cd collection.

Two Men With The Blues pairs Willie Nelson with legendary jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. It was recorded during a two night stint at New York’s Allen Room billed as “Willie Nelson Sings the Blues”, part of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s “Singers Over Manhattan” series. The band features Wille and his long-time harmonica player Mickey Raphael joining ranks with Wynton and his backing quartet for a raucous selection of tracks ranging from country stalwarts to jazz standards and all with an effortless perfection.

If there was any complaint about the cd to be cast it would be that the bass is too high in the mix which makes it difficult to really crank up the volume while listening. If that’s the worst thing you can say about an album, then you know that thing is Essential Listening. It kind of makes me excited to see what else is gonna come out of that box.

Willie Nelson & Wynton Marsalis – Bright Lights, Big City
Willie Nelson & Wynton Marsalis – Georgia On My Mind
Willie Nelson & Wynton Marsalis – My Bucket’s Got A Hole In It

Willie Nelson’s Official Site, Wynton Marsalis’ Official Site, Buy Two Men With The Blues


  1. I’ve seen Willie once opening for Dave Matthews and it was horrible, not because of Willie, but because of the sound and he didn’t have his full band with him. I will NEVER go to another concert at Autozone Park.

  2. I love smaller venues, I don’t see myself EVER going to the FedEx forum for a concert unless it’s the Stones, McCartney, Tom Petty, or Aerosmith. Big venues just aren’t for music fans like us, we need to get personal with our music.

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