On March 29, local folk ‘n’ country songwriter of some small note, Misisipi Mike Wolf and his musical pals will perform live and in person, for all those who wish to be entertained, the classic 1975 Willie (Hugh) Nelson concept album “Red Headed Stranger.”
Considered one of the best albums all time, “Red Headed Stranger” was truly an anomaly in the indulgent 1970s. By 1975, Willie Nelson was a middle aged, long-haired, pot-smoking fish out of water in the staid and conservative Nashville country scene. Having retreated to Austin, Texas after a career that had rewarded him with very little success, Willie Nelson took his career and music into his own hands. What he created was a concept album built around pop, folk and cowboy songs dating back to the early 20th century as well as original songs, all recorded in the sparsest of manners with sometimes as little as his iconic voice and nylon stringed guitar. The subject matter, a stark tale of a vengeful, forlorn lover in the days of the Wild West, was as out of its time as the recording itself. Recorded on a shoestring budget and originally rejected by his new record label (which was forced to release it due to contractual obligations), it became one of the biggest-selling country albums of all time and heralded the coming of the “Outlaw Country” era. “Red Headed Stranger” became a mainstream success that saw acceptance by rock audiences who identified with this middle-aged country singer in ways that no one could have predicted.
A certified classic, the album has been embraced not simply as a country album but as one of the great artistic statements in popular music of the 20th century. Cover versions of the entire album have been recorded by at least two Indie artists. Carla Bozulich (Nels Cline Singers, Geraldine Fibbers) and Phosphorent.
Today at Bird & Beckett, with a crack band of seasoned pros, Misisipi Mike will give the album his own spin, after a set of charming new original tunes you’ve not yet heard. Â Do come!
Our events are put on under the umbrella of the nonprofit Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project (the "BBCLP"). That's how we fund our ambitious schedule of 300 or so concerts and literary events every year.
The BBCLP is a 501(c)(3) non-profit...
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Gigging musicians! You have nothing to lose but your lack of a collective voice to achieve fair wages for your work!
The IMA can be a conduit for you, if you join in to make it work.
Read more here - Andy Gilbert's Feb 25 article about the IMA from KQED's site