The Great Divide (Willie Nelson album)

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The Great Divide
Studio album by Willie Nelson
Released January 2002
Genre Country
Length 53:34
Label Lost Highway
Producer Matt Serletic
Willie Nelson chronology
Rainbow Connection
(2001)
The Great Divide
(2002)
Nacogdoches
(2004)

The Great Divide is an album released in 2002 by American country music singer Willie Nelson. It contains several duets and musical collaborations with artists such as Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty, Lee Ann Womack, Kid Rock, Sheryl Crow, Brian McKnight, and Bonnie Raitt. The album produced two chart singles in "Mendocino County Line" and "Maria (Shut Up and Kiss Me)", which respectively reached #22 and #41 on the Hot Country Songs charts. Also included is a cover of "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)", previously a hit for Kenny Rogers and the First Edition. The songs "Mendocino County Line," "Last Stand in Open Country," and "This Face" were co-written by Bernie Taupin, the lyricist best known for his collaborations with Elton John.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Maria (Shut Up and Kiss Me)" – 4:20 (Rob Thomas)
  2. "Mendocino County Line" – 4:32 (Matt Serletic, Bernie Taupin)
    • duet with Lee Ann Womack
  3. "Last Stand in Open Country" – 4:45 (Taupin, Jim Cregan, Robin LeMesurier, Dennis Tufano)
    • duet with Kid Rock
  4. "Won't Catch Me Cryin'" – 4:07 (Thomas)
  5. "Be There for You" – 4:34 (Serletic, Kevin Kadish)
    • duet with Sheryl Crow
  6. "The Great Divide" – 4:06 (Willie Nelson, Jackie King)
  7. "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)" (Mickey Newbury) – 3:32
  8. "This Face" – 4:29 (Taupin, Cregan, LeMesurier, Tufano)
  9. "Don't Fade Away" – 4:18 (Serletic, Kadish)
    • duet with Brian McKnight
  10. "Time After Time" (Lauper, Hyman) – 4:04
  11. "Recollection Phoenix" – 4:53 (Rob Thomas)
  12. "You Remain" – 5:54 (Leslie Satcher, Donald Wallace Polythress)
    • duet with Bonnie Raitt

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[2]

The album was panned for the excessively adult contemporary production. Pat Blashill of Rolling Stone said "Nelson is a performer who uses plain, powerful lyrics and a handsome but unvarnished voice to great effect. Much of that gets lost in the adult-contemporary production goop and heavenly choirs" of this release. Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic said it is "an accomplished, classy album, but it sure as hell isn't a Willie Nelson album."[3] Both agreed "the best moments here are the ones in which Nelson just does his thing all by his bad self."[4]

Personnel[edit]

Production[edit]

  • Produced By Matt Serletic
  • Engineered By Mark Dobson, Steve Marcantonio, Dennis Sands & David Thoener, with assistance from David Bryant, Todd Johnson, Tosh Kasai, John Nelson, John Rodd & Sam Story
  • Mixed By Derek Carlson, Jay Goin & David Thoener
  • Mastered By Stephen Marcussen

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2002) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Top Country Albums 5
U.S. Billboard 200 43

References[edit]