A Willie Nelson show is always great fun. This was the second time I had the privilege of seeing him. As I arrived in the parking lot a couple lit up a joint and hotboxed beside me. Another fan in the venue had shirt that read “I’m not high enough for this shit.” – Willie Nelson fans are some cool people.
Lukas Nelson – Calls his new band the imperfectly perfect circle. Soulful and emotional voice with just a tinge of rasp and the family twang. A perfect classic country blend. The band is dynamically perfect feeling out every song. Tasteful guitar licks/solos, steady solid drumming and groove penetrating bass. “Forgetting About Georgia” was my favorite tune and gave me the feels. Absolutely beautiful song. His newer song “Turn Off the News (Build A Garden)” was also beautiful.
Alison Krauss – Seeing the dual lineup of Alison Krauss/Willie Nelson is what made me want to attend this show. Krauss’ stunning and flawless voice was incredible to hear in person and her fiddle playing along with her backing band made for an amazing set of bluegrass, country, gospel and more through a well curated list of covers (The Foundations’ “Baby, Now That I’ve Found You”, “Gentle On My Mind” and a few Willie Nelson tunes!) and a few of Krauss’ originals. My favorite: “Let Me Touch You for A While”
I checked out Merriweather’s new “Sky Lawn” during Krauss’ set and I must say it’s a cool addition. The lawn had very limited space with great views (aside from the rail in front with a balcony vibe) but is a cool space to wander to, especially with how much rain there was at this show. The only downfall seems to be the volume of some of Krauss’ set from the sky lawn as it was difficult to hear. I imagine Merriweather will have this issue resolved within a few shows.
Willie Nelson – He rolled into each song with such amazing energy, especially from someone who is 86 years old! His voice is as moving as ever and his signature guitar trigger sounds like no other instrument. Nelson tossed his hats and bandanas into the crowd, giving them some amazing souvenirs. The middle of the set was executed with the utmost brilliance as Willie launched into three of his biggest hits backtobacktoback (“Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys” “On The Road Again” and “Always On My Mind”). If you ever get a chance to catch him, it’s an absolute must – one of country’s biggest legends and coolest personalities.