Moment Of Forever

Willie Nelson

Lost Highway, 2008

REVIEW BY: David Bowling


Willie Nelson turns 75 in a few months and, like Old Man River, just keeps rolling along.

Nelson began his career in 1956. Since that time, he has written hundreds of songs, released over fifty albums and sold tens of millions of records and CDs. He has even starred in a number of Hollywood films. Along the way he developed a unique and recognizable vocal style and became an American musical icon.

Released in 2008, Moment Of Forever was produced by Kenny Chesney, who also duets on one of the songs. But this release is a mellow album that breaks no new ground. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

As with most of Nelson’s latest releases, there are some high points and a number of average songs. Kris Kristofferson’s title song, “Moment Of Forever,” is made for his voice. Kristofferson has always been able to paint a picture with words and Nelson brings these words to life with his voice and acoustic guitar with minimal backing. Everyone has moments that remain forever.

There are several other notable songs contained on Moment Of Forever. Willie Nelson takes Randy Newman’s “Louisitania 1927” and reworks it into a biting commentary on the government’s reaction to the New Orleans’s flooding problems after hurricane Katrina. This song shows that Willie Nelson has retained his social consciousness even at age 75. Likewise, Dave Matthews “Gravedigger” is stripped down to the basics and presented as an anti-war song. Nelson goes in a different direction with “When I Was Young and Grandma Wasn’t Old;” this mid-tempo number is a positive and nostalgic look back at life’s passing and its memories.

Nelson contributes only three original compositions on Moment of Forever: “Over You Again” and “You Don’t Think I’m Funny Anymore” are average at best and are typical Nelson fare, while “Always Now” is an excellent song that reflects upon aging and the past. “Always Now” is presented in the laid back Nelson style and is a very personal song.

The real miss on the album is a seven-plus minute version of Bob Dylan’s “Gotta Serve Somebody.” It is presented in a rock & roll style with backing brass and is a place Nelson just should not go musically.

Many of Willie Nelson’s country music contemporaries are gone, yet he has remained and continues to perform between one hundred and two hundred concerts a year. Moment Of Forever may not be Willie Nelson’s best work, but it is still presentable and in many ways relevant, and at 75 that’s more than enough.

Rating: B

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© 2008 David Bowling and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Lost Highway, and is used for informational purposes only.