Those buzzing about in the year 1933, Eighty-four years ago, witnessed Billy Holiday’s first hit, “Riffin The Scotch,” heard Duke Ellington and his band be welcomed by the masses in London, and behold the baby birth of the gritty, humorous and sometimes forlorn American icon and country storyteller, Willie Nelson.
Nelson, last seen on January 19th 2017 in London England with good ole’ buddy, Hollywood film star and weed aficionado Woody Harrelson, recently posted on his Facebook page, a cancellation of shows on January 28-29 due to reported ‘cold symptoms.’ The news of Nelson’s ill health is ironic considering the announcement of the singer’s new album release, “God’s Problem Child,” on April 28th.
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The cover of “God’s Problem Child” shows a self-portrait of a somber-faced Nelson, eyes cast downward in a hazy shade of amber as to suggest both guilt and forgiveness for 84 years of expressing his soul to his fans and himself.
The new album features 13 tracks with seven of the tracks written with longtime producer, Buddy Cannon (there is even a track written by Cannon’s Mother, Lyndel Rhodes, “Little House On The Hill”). Nelson has been quoted in the media as stating he wrote the tune “Still Not Dead,” due to issue he had with hearing every three months or so whether or not the country legend was still alive, or dead. Dead or alive, Nelson accomplishes both, following the track “Still Not Dead,” with the title track, “God’s Problem Child.” The track is co-written with Jamey Johnson, Tony Joe White (including vocal contribution) features a guest vocal appearance from the grave courtesy of the late great rock singer Leon Russell, recorded last November before the singer’s passing.
In “God’s Problem Child,” it appears Nelson examines his life with satire, love, and reflection with tracks on the album such as “Old Timer”, “True Love”, “A Woman’s Love”, “Your Memory Has A Mind Of It’s Own,” “It Gets Easier,” and “I made A mistake.” Nelson even voices his deadpan political opinion with the track, “Delete And Fast Forward,” proposing “The elections are over and nobody wins…don’t worry too much, you’ll go crazy again.” Nelson completes his “God’s Problem Child” confession with a tribute to his late friend and country music myth, Merle Haggard on, “He Won’t Ever Be Gone.” Hopefully, Nelson’s health will improve and he will continue to be country music’s solution and will wait for countless years to reunite with Haggard, to be God’s problem.
“God’s Problem Child” is out on the 28th of April 2017 via Sony Music.
The full track-listing is as follows…
1. Little House On The Hill
2. Old Timer
3. True Love
4. Delete And Fast Forward
5. A Woman’s Love
6. Your Memory Has A Mind Of Its Own
8. Still Not Dead
9. God’s Problem Child
10. It Gets Easier
11. Lady Luck
12. I Made A Mistake
13. He Won’t Ever Be Gone