Willie Nelson: Lost Highway

nelsonwillie_w288Willie Nelson
Lost Highway
(Lost Highway)

It’s easy to forget how relevant Willie Nelson still remains, nearly 50 years after releasing his first record. On Lost Highway, his greatest hits collection from the label of the same name, Nelson turns in 17 already classic country songs. Tunes like “Maria (Shut Up and Kiss Me),” “Back to Earth” and his cover of the reggae classic “The Harder They Come” just go to illustrate how important he still is. With the label for almost 10 years, Nelson churned out 12 albums on Lost Highway Records alone. There are plenty of duets in this collection – everyone from Matchbox 20’s Rob Thomas and Ray Price to Lucinda Williams and Elvis Costello – but the songs are always best when Nelson goes it alone. Following someone as prolific as Nelson, you’d be forgiven for not picking up every single record he put out over the past decade – which includes a collection of reggae covers. But Lost Highway is essential, even for the casual fan. The album also includes a couple of unreleased tracks like the stellar cover of Ned Sublette’s “Cowboys Are Frequently Secretly Fond of Each Other.”