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Willie Nelson 
Moment Of Forever

Album review by: Cheryl Harvey Hill, Sr. Staff Journalist 

Although he wrote only three of the thirteen tracks on Moment of Forever, produced by Kenny Chesney and Buddy Cannon, the album is delivered in pure Willie Nelson fashion and that translates to authentic musical metered magic. Nelson, who will be 75 this year, was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973, the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1993, received the Living Legend Award in 1996 and, with this album, demonstrates why he continues to be an inspiring troubadour in American music history and one of country music's most beloved icons.

Although the album kicks off with "Over You Again," written by Willie, Micha, and Lukas Nelson, it is the title cut, written by Nelson's good friend Kris Kristofferson with Danny Timms, "Moment of Forever" that is the perfect introduction for the rest of the album. This is an easy flowing melody that is sublimely enhanced by Nelson's poignant rendition and Trigger's unique input on the bridge.

“You were young enough to dream / And I was old enough to learn something new / I’m so glad I got to dance with you / For a moment of forever”

I enjoyed all of the songs on the album but "Keep Me From Blowing Away" was definitely one of my favorite tracks. Nelson's familiar voice and guitar playing are so unique and we've come to trust the integrity of the lyrics he so effortlessly conveys.

“Oh Lord, if you’re listening / I know I’m no Christian / I ain’t got much coming to me / So send down some sunshine / And throw me a lifeline / And keep me from blowing away”

Listening to him sing "Always Now," one of the three cuts he wrote, reminds me why I have referred to him in previous reviews as a consummate singer and songwriter. He covers an eclectic variety of songs on this project and easily manages to make each one of them his own; in fact, in my humble opinion, his version of Dave Matthews' "Gravedigger" is even better than the original.

His duet with Kenny Chesney, "Worry B Gone," was the perfect follow up to "When I was Young and Grandma Wasn't Old" and the ideal prelude to "You Don't Think I'm Funny Anymore;" the latter, another of the three tunes penned by Nelson, has some super harmonica riffs and a really contagious rhythm that is guaranteed to get your toes tapping and the final line will make you smile.

Bob Dylan's "Gotta Serve Somebody" is the final cut on this album and this one cut is enough to make sure you get your money's worth. This track runs nearly eight minutes but I must admit that it didn't seem that long while I was listening. That fact speaks to the way Nelson is able to articulate this song; not just lyrically, but musically. When you just fall into a song and lose all track of time; well, you know you are listening to great stuff. But I am going to give you a heads up on this final track. "Gotta Serve Somebody" ends at 7 minutes and 55 seconds but don't turn your CD player off because at 8 minutes and 11 seconds you will hear an impromptu bit of interaction about the 12th track that takes place between the musicians, the producers, and Nelson. Fun stuff at the end and over all, not surprisingly, a great album.

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