SPREADING SOME STARDUST

Flashback -- May 13, 1978

Willie Nelson has always been known for going out on some very long limbs. In 1975, for instance, he recorded country's first so-called "concept" album (one with a running storyline), Red Headed Stranger. He has also sung with diverse duet partners from Ray Charles to Julio Iglesias.

In 1978, the unpredictable Willie struck again with his album Stardust, a collection of pop standards including "All of Me," "Blue Skies" and the title tune. Going further against the grain, Willie tabbed R&B legend Booker T. Jones to produce the record.

"I'd wanted to do those songs for a long time," Willie explained, "but I just couldn't find the right producer and arranger. I knew that in order to do songs like that, I would need to have someone in there who knew everything there was to know about writing and arranging – and sure enough, he was the guy."

Stardust, released May 13, 1978, sailed to No. 1 a month later, and clung there for 11 weeks. Soon, this album of standards became a standard in itself -- staying on the country charts for more than 10 years!

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