A Classic & Unreleased Collection

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Originally released via the Home Shopping Network and later issued through Rhino, A Classic & Unreleased Collection is a three-disc box set that, given its origins, could seem like a quick cash-in but is really an unexpected delight, necessary for any serious fan of Willie Nelson at his prime. It would have been easy for this to be a collection of released album tracks or half-baked outtakes, but this is a veritable treasure trove, containing no "classic" recordings in the classic sense in other words, there are no hits, but instead a wealth of valuable rarities spanning from 1957 to the mid-'80s. Some of this borders on the legendary, as in the case of the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Originally released via the Home Shopping Network and later issued through Rhino, A Classic & Unreleased Collection is a three-disc box set that, given its origins, could seem like a quick cash-in but is really an unexpected delight, necessary for any serious fan of Willie Nelson at his prime. It would have been easy for this to be a collection of released album tracks or half-baked outtakes, but this is a veritable treasure trove, containing no "classic" recordings in the classic sense in other words, there are no hits, but instead a wealth of valuable rarities spanning from 1957 to the mid-'80s. Some of this borders on the legendary, as in the case of the Pamper Music demo recordings, while others are albums so lost they've not even been rumored, but the overall quality of the music is remarkably high. The first disc contains the most historic material, containing his first single for D Records "No Place for Me"/"Lumberjack" and 11 songwriting demos he cut for Pamper, only a handful of which appeared on Sugar Hill's 2003 collection Crazy: The Demo Sessions. While the D single is a little slight, it is appealing and Nelson's style is apparent even at this formative stage, and the Pamper recordings are rich and textured, highlighted by early versions of "Healing Hands of Time," "A Moment Isn't Very Long," and "Slow Down Old World." Then, the collection moves into 11 unreleased cuts from his short stint at Atlantic in the early '70s. He released two of his best albums, Shotgun Willie and Phases and Stages, at Atlantic, and while these songs don't have the cohesive themes of those records, the music is at a similar high quality, highlighted by an alternate take of "Bloody Mary Morning" and a great duet with Tracy Nelson on "After the Fire Is Gone." The middle of the second disc is devoted to the complete unreleased album Live at the Texas Opry House, which captured a 1974 gig. Up to that point, Willie hadn't had a live album, and while this is hardly as epic as the subsequent Willie and Family Live, it offers a different take, capturing Willie and his band as a Texas roadhouse band, kicking out storming versions of "Stay All Night Stay a Little Longer," "Whiskey River," and "Truck Drivin' Man," while slowing down for some slow-dance numbers; it's a hell of a performance and reason enough to get the collection. From there, the box moves into the '80s, starting with the unreleased Sugar Moon album, yet another collection of standards, like so many of his post-Stardust albums, but this has the benefit of a really swinging, relaxed vibe with interesting songs and arrangements that actually let Nelson and his band breathe and play; it's better than most of the post-Stardust sound-alike records. Then, there are four songs from the scrapped guitar-and-voice album Willie Alone, before ending up with Willie Sings Hank Williams, a fine record that doesn't deliver any surprises, either in song selection or delivery, but still is a nice listen, one that' s more modest and enjoyable than many of his released '80s efforts on Columbia. Simply put, everything here is very good indeed -- maybe not seminal, but always enjoyable and often fascinating. Any serious Willie Nelson collection needs to have this.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/11/1995
  • Label: Rhino
  • UPC: 081227146221
  • Catalog Number: 71462

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Introduction By Willie (0:36)
  2. 2 No Place For Me (1:20)
  3. 3 Lumberjack (2:14)
  4. 4 Why Are You Picking on Me? (1:55)
  5. 5 The Shelter Of Your Arms (2:44)
  6. 6 A Moment Isn't Very Long (3:02)
  7. 7 Any Old Arms Won't Do (2:46)
  8. 8 December Day (2:32)
  9. 9 Healing Hands Of Time (2:12)
  10. 10 Things To Remember (1:45)
  11. 11 The Face Of A Fighter (3:19)
  12. 12 Suffering In Silence (2:27)
  13. 13 Who Do I Know In Dallas (2:22)
  14. 14 Slow Down Old World (1:50)
  15. 15 I Hope So (2:36)
  16. 16 I Gotta Have Something I Ain't Got (3:59)
  17. 17 I'm So Ashamed (1:56)
  18. 18 My Cricket And Me (2:59)
  19. 19 Both Ends Of The Candle (3:01)
  20. 20 Slow Down Old World (2:53)
  21. 21 Under The Double Eagle (5:03)
Disc 2
  1. 1 So Much To Do (3:10)
  2. 2 (How Will I Know) I'm Falling In Love Again (3:26)
  3. 3 Bloody Mary Morning (3:28)
  4. 4 No Love Around (1:54)
  5. 5 After The Fire Is Gone - Tracy Nelson (3:05)
  6. 6 Whiskey River (3:48)
  7. 7 Me And Paul (3:23)
  8. 8 Medley: Funny How Time Slips Away/Crazy/Night Life (7:20)
  9. 9 Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer) (3:23)
  10. 10 Walkin' (3:09)
  11. 11 Bloody Mary Morning/Take Me Back To Tulsa (4:44)
  12. 12 The Party's Over (2:16)
  13. 13 Truck Drivin' Man (2:23)
  14. 14 She Thinks I Still Care (4:05)
  15. 15 Good Hearted Woman (3:16)
  16. 16 Sister's Coming Home (2:44)
  17. 17 Sugar Moon (2:22)
  18. 18 I'm A Fool To Care (3:28)
  19. 19 Rosetta (2:17)
  20. 20 I'll Sail My Ship Alone (2:21)
Disc 3
  1. 1 I'll Take What I Can Get (2:07)
  2. 2 It It's Wrong To Love You (2:36)
  3. 3 Struttin' With Some Barbecue (2:38)
  4. 4 I'm Gonna Sit Right Down (And Write Myself a Letter) (2:56)
  5. 5 Till The End Of The World (2:50)
  6. 6 I'll Keep On Loving You (2:20)
  7. 7 It Should Be Easier Now (2:17)
  8. 8 Will You Remember Mine (2:31)
  9. 9 Who'll Buy My Memories? (3:15)
  10. 10 Jimmy's Road (2:39)
  11. 11 I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry (2:37)
  12. 12 A House Is Not A Home (2:15)
  13. 13 My Bucket's Got A Hole In It (2:00)
  14. 14 Why Don't You Love Me (Like You Used to Do)? (2:17)
  15. 15 Mind Your Own Business (2:20)
  16. 16 They'll Never Take Her Love From Me (2:45)
  17. 17 Move It On Over (4:12)
  18. 18 Why Should We Try Anymore (2:34)
  19. 19 My Son Calls Another Man Daddy (2:14)
  20. 20 I Saw The Light (2:28)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Willie Nelson Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals
Johnny Gimble Fiddle, Mandolin
Tiny Moore Mandolin
David Bromberg Guitar
Pete Carr Acoustic Guitar, Dobro, Electric Guitar
Tracy Nelson Vocals, Track Performer
Mac Gayden Guitar
Fred Carter Acoustic Guitar
Jimmy Day Electric Guitar, Steel Guitar
Mickey Raphael Harmonica
Ron Cornelius Guitar
Biff Adam Drums
Barry Beckett Keyboards
Jimmy Belkin Fiddle
Steve Burgh Acoustic Guitar, Guitar
Gary Church Trombone
Tommy Cogbill Bass
Ray Edenton Rhythm Guitar
Bobby Emmons Piano
Paul English Drums
Jeff Gutcheon Organ
Jack Hale Trombone
Norm Hamlet Steel Guitar
Roger Hawkins Drums
David Hood Bass
John Hughey Steel Guitar
Wayne Jackson Trumpet
Andrew Love Tenor Saxophone
Kenny Malone Drums
Don Markham Trumpet, Saxophone
Bucky Meadows Piano
James Mitchell Baritone Saxophone
Bob "Chicago" Nelson Piano
Hargus "Pig" Robbins Piano
Bee Spears Bass
Clint Strong Guitar
Pete Wade Guitar
Mark Yeary Piano
Reggie Young Guitar
Dave Zettner Bass
Dennis Hromek Bass
Bobbie Nelson Piano
Bob Moore Bass
Jim Belken Fiddle
Fred Carter Jr. Acoustic Guitar
William Paul Ackerman Drums
Technical Credits
Willie Nelson Composer, Producer
Leon Payne Composer
James Austin Producer
Walt Breeland Composer
Paul Buskirk Composer
Richard H. Coburn Composer
Hank Cochran Composer
Bob Emmer Executive Producer
Lil Hardin Composer
Bob Johnston Producer
Arif Mardin Producer
Don Raye Composer
Vincent Rose Composer
Jerry Wexler Producer
Rich Kienzle Liner Notes
Shirley Collie Composer
Coco Shinomiya Artwork
Neil Kellerhouse Artwork
Buddy Lee Executive Producer
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