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FDP Forum / Sing, Sing, Sing! - Vocalist's Forum / Singing *ahead* of the beat (Willie Nelson content)

Contributing Member


Jul 29th, 2012 07:28 PM   Edit   Profile  

Saw old Willie on Austin City Limits the other day. I like Willie to a degree and he had Asleep at the Wheel as his band. Great performances but man, Willie sure does toss them words out in a hurry with no care, doesn't he? I get that it's a stylized thing, but I found it annoying how frequent he was doing it.

I can't think of anyone else who does this.


Central NY

Jul 30th, 2012 03:54 AM   Edit   Profile  

Yhey are his songs - can't he do them however he likes?

Contributing Member


Jul 30th, 2012 04:01 PM   Edit   Profile  

Well I'm presuming a fair number of the songs were not in fact his compositions, but no matter. He can rattle off the verse/chorus/bridge before the first measure ends for all I care. It's just a peculiar delivery and overdone imo, and not a technique I can attribute to any other performer.


usa/ Northwest IN

You say you`re leavin,I`ll help you pack
Aug 4th, 2012 11:13 PM   Edit   Profile  

If Waylon were still around he`d surely agree!


S.F. Bay Area

Sep 19th, 2012 04:49 PM   Edit   Profile  

I used to take guitar lessons with Jazz Guitarist Jackie King who has been a friend of Willie's since Jackie was a teenager, has recorded an album "The Gypsy", that featured Willie's vocals and toured as Willie's guitarist for 3 years in the early to mid 2000s. He shared a lot of funny stories about Willie, for example, Willie liked to "accidentally" step on Jackie's guitar cord, unplugging it, just as Jackie was starting a solo. I asked Jackie at my lesson one night if he ever got "thrown" by the way Willie gets so far ahead of beat with his lyrics. Jackie started laughing and said that he had had seen Willie "F-up" many world-class musicians by doing this. I said that I'd love to see Willie do a duet with Jazz vocalist Little Jimmy Scott (who sings as far behind the beat as Willie does ahead of the beat) again Jackie laughed while shaking his head "yes".

(This message was last edited by Paulsy at 04:55 PM, Sep 19th, 2012)

Contributing Member


Sep 19th, 2012 05:03 PM   Edit   Profile  

Funny account, Paulsy. Like I said, I kinda like Willie and find the technique playful, like when a guitarist tosses in some inane melodic phrase like the Flintstones theme in the middle of an improv. It's just that he's in that mode most of the time.

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Mar 27th, 2013 10:52 AM   Edit   Profile  

Willie seems to be doing less of this on his new album. I guess he even got tired of it.

But heck, he's gonna sing it anyway, he might as well get the words over with.

Contributing Member

St. Louis

"Thumbpicks don't slide into soundholes"
Jun 1st, 2014 04:40 PM   Edit   Profile  

After the ten millionth time I had sung a song I would probably do this just to stay awake.
Face it Willie is getting old. He'd better spit them words out while he remembers them. He's always a great show and seems to still love it so.................... Let's leave him be!

Contributing Member

Ocala, Fla

Let's stick to drinking songs in unison
Jun 1st, 2014 06:01 PM   Edit   Profile  

Its been almost 2 years. I'm over it ;-)

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Apr 10th, 2015 01:57 PM   Edit   Profile  

I'm a huge Willie fan and have been since the mid 70's, but I'd rather he sang the song and not do the all over the place phrasing. It rarely sounds good.

FDP Forum / Sing, Sing, Sing! - Vocalist's Forum / Singing *ahead* of the beat (Willie Nelson content)

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