WILLIE NELSON – The Complete Atlantic Sessions

Release Date – 06/20/2006

THE COMPLETE ATLANTIC SESSIONS contains remastered versions of Nelson’s two groundbreaking Atlantic releases — Shotgun Willie, his 1973 debut and “possibly his finest album ever” (All Music Guide), and Phases And Stages, his 1974 follow-up and “one of the great concept albums overall” (All Music Guide) — expanded with studio outtakes, alternate versions, and unreleased music. The third disc, Live at The Texas Opry House, features rare and unreleased performances recorded in Austin in 1974.

Recorded in New York, Shotgun Willie marked Nelson’s break with Nashville and the city’s monolithic sound. Touching on everything from redneck rock and Texas swing to “Sad Songs And Waltzes,” the album’s freewheeling spirit helped spark the outlaw country movement with songs like the horn-punctuated title track, a cover Bob Wills’ “Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer)” as well as “Whiskey River,” Nelson’s customary show opener for more than 30 years. The expanded version of Shotgun Willie features 12 bonus tracks, half of which are previously unreleased including alternate takes of “Whiskey River” and “A Song For You” along with outtakes of “Save Your Tears” and “I Drank All Of Our Precious Love Away.”

Nelson’s follow-up, Phases And Stages, was one of country’s earliest concept records and remains one of its best. Telling the story of a failing marriage, the first side of the album is dedicated to songs from his perspective while the other is devoted to songs from her point of view. Recorded in Muscle Shoals by legendary producer, Jerry Wexler the album featured some of Nelson’s most poignant writing including “Pretend I Never Happened,” “I Still Can’t Believe You’re Gone,” and “It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way.” The expanded version of Phases And Stages features ten bonus tracks including eight previously unreleased songs such as an alternate versions of “Bloody Mary Morning,” “No Love Around,” and “Heaven And Hell.”

The final disc, Live at The Texas Opry House, contains 16 live performances by Nelson and his band — steel guitarist Jimmy Day; fiddler Johnny Gimble; pianist Bobbie Nelson; bassist, Bea Spears; drummer Paul English; and Mickey Raphael on harmonica. Recorded by Wexler June 29 and 30, 1974 at The Texas Opry House in Austin, the album captures the band blazing through “Whiskey River,” “Me And Paul,” and “Good Hearted Woman.” While many of the performances featured here debuted on Rhino’s out-of-print 1993 album, The Classic, Unreleased Collection, five performances are previously unreleased including “Shotgun Willie,” “You Look Like The Devil,” an electric version of “Bloody Mary Morning” as well as a medley of Nelson’s early hits, “Funny How Time Slips Away,” “Crazy,” and “Night Life.”

Track Listing

Disc 1

  1. “Shotgun Willie”
  2. “Whiskey River”
  3. “Sad Songs And Waltzes”
  4. “Local Memory”
  5. “Slow Down Old World”
  6. “Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer)”
  7. “Devil In A Sleeping Bag”
  8. “She’s Not For You”
  9. “Bubbles In My Beer”
  10. “You Look Like The Devil”
  11. “So Much To Do”
  12. “A Song For You”

Bonus Tracks

  1. “I Gotta Have Something I Ain’t Got” — Outtake
  2. “I’m So Ashamed” — Outtake
  3. “My Cricket & Me” — Solo Outtake
  4. “Both Ends Of the Candle” — Outtake
  5. “Slowdown Old World” — Alternate Version
  6. “Under The Double Eagle” — Outtake
  7. “So Much To Do” — Alternate Version
  8. “My Cricket & Me — Band Outtake*
  9. “Save Your Tears — Outtake*
  10. “A Song For You” — Alternate Version*
  11. “Whiskey River” — Alternate Version*
  12. “I Drank All Of Our Precious Love Away” — Outtake*

Disc 2

  1. Phases And Stages (Theme)
    “Washing The Dishes”
  2. Phases And Stages (Theme)
  3. “Pretend I Never Happened”
  4. “Sister’s Coming Home”
    “Down At The Corner Beer Joint”
  5. “(How Will I Know) I’m Falling In Love Again”
  6. “Bloody Mary Morning”
  7. Phases And Stages (Theme)
    “No Love Around”
  8. “I Still Can’t Believe You’re Gone”
  9. “It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way”
  10. “Heaven And Hell”
  11. Phases And Stages (Theme)
    “Pick Up The Tempo”
    Phases And Stages (Theme)

Bonus Tracks

  1. Phases And Stages (Theme) — Alternate Version*
    “Washing The Dishes” — Alternate Version*
  2. “Sister’s Coming Home” — Alternate Version*
    “Down At The Corner Beer Joint” — Alternate Version*
  3. Phases And Stages (Theme) — Alternate Version*
    “(How Will I Know) I’m Falling In Love Again” — Alternate Version*
  4. “Bloody Mary Morning” — Alternate Version*
  5. “No Love Around” — Alternate Version*
  6. “I Still Can’t Believe You’re Gone” — Alternate Version*
  7. “It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way” — Alternate Version*
  8. “Heaven And Hell” — Alternate Version/Duet Vocal*
  9. Phases And Stages (Theme)
    “Pick Up The Tempo”
  10. Phases And Stages (Theme) — Alternate Version*

Disc 3

  1. “Whiskey River”
  2. “Me And Paul”
  3. Medley:
    “Funny How Time Slips Away”
    “Night Life”
  4. “Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer)”
  5. “Walkin'”
  6. “Bloody Mary Morning/Take Me Back To Tulsa”
  7. “The Party’s Over”
  8. “Truck Drivin’ Man”
  9. “She Thinks I Still Care”
  10. “Good Hearted Woman”
  11. “Sister’s Comin’ Home”

Bonus Tracks

  1. “Shotgun Willie”*
  2. “You Look Like The Devil”*
  3. “Bloody Mary Morning” — Electric Guitar Version*
  4. Medley:*
    “Funny How Time Slips Away”
    “Night Life”
  5. “Willie’s After Hours” — Studio Track*

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