Willie Nelson‘s career has spanned more than half a century. And while the ten-time GRAMMY winner can’t narrow down one GRAMMY moment that has stuck with him, there is one memory he’ll never forget: the first time he heard his own voice on a recording.
“The first time I heard my voice played back after I recorded it on a tape recorder I was horrified,” he told Radio.com during an interview last month at Farm Aid. “I said, ‘No!’ but then after a few years of listening to it I got used to who I was and the songs I was writing were a little better than my singing.”
A long time has passed since Nelson had that experience–and he’s made quite a few recordings since then, too. In 2013 alone he has already released two albums and he’s already working on a third.
Nelson’s most recent release is To All the Girls…, which hit stores today (Oct. 15). An album of 18 duets, Nelson told Radio.com that it was a challenge to figure out which artist should be featured on each track.
“It had a lot to do with who was available, who was in town. Buddy Cannon is probably the best guy to do these things because he’s a great producer. He got us all together,” Nelson said.
To All the Girls… includes 18 collaborations with legends such as Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn as well as contemporary hitmakers, including Carrie Underwood and Miranda Lambert. A particular favorite of Nelson’s is “Will You Remember Mine,” a track recorded with his “young friend from Maui,” Lily Meola. But that’s not to say it’s the only song he has gravitated to.
“Dolly’s song is a great song, ‘From Here to the Moon and Back.’ It’s one of my favorites,” Nelson said.
He may have turned 80 years old this year, but Nelson shows no sign of slowing down. In fact, he’s already hard at work on another album.
“I’ve never had any problem making the music, the problem is giving the record companies enough time to sell it,” he confessed. “That’s been going on ever since I can remember, because it’s easy for me to go into the studio to record a song, and I realize it takes a longer time than that to market it.”