Willie Nelson - First Rose Of Spring (LP)

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First Rose Of Spring is a studio album from the time-defying legend who has won Grammys for the two albums before this (2019’s Ride Me Back Home won Best Solo Country Performance and 2018’s My Way won Best Traditional Pop Album).

While his last few albums have focused on facing the reality of mortality and crying or laughing in its face, this one is focused much more on celebrating the now and embracing life, love and friends & family.

The album includes songs written by Willie and long time producer Buddy Cannon (“Blue Star,” “Love Just Laughed”) combined with songs written by Chris Stapleton and Toby Keith plus a handful of classic songs that Willie interprets his way (from the Billy Joe Shaver track “We Are The Cowboys” to the sublime closer, the Charles Azanavour classic “Hier Encore”), all performed with an amazing band of Nashville gunslingers.

The first track is the title song and album opener “First Rose Of Spring,” penned by the songwriting team of Randy Houser, Allen Shamblin & Mark Beeson.