Not for nothing is Norah Jones’ side-band called the Little Willies.
The Grapevine native has been making the rounds to promote her new album Little Broken Hearts, and she spends most of her Q&A with Garden and Gun’s Matt Hendrickson talking about Willie Nelson.
Nelson and Jones have collaborated frequently, from their version of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” on Jones’ last album, 2010’s all-duets Featuring Norah Jones, to the recent Wynton Marsalis-led tribute to Ray Charles, Here We Go Again.
Jones says she learned a lot about how to deal with fame as a musician from Willie: “Just the way he is so patient and signs everything for everyone after a show.”
The interview then continues:
You’ve played with Willie a number of times. What’s he like?
I love singing with him. He’s such an easy musician to play with. It’s sort of mind-blowing to think that he would defer to someone, but he does and is really sweet.
Do you have a favorite record of his?
I’m so partial to Red Headed Stranger. I know every inch of that record. It reminds me of my childhood.
I can just picture my grandparents’ house in Oklahoma. They were super country. My grandmother always had records playing, and I know my grandfather’s favorite album was Red Headed Stranger.
And, later in the interview:
When someone says “Texas,” what do you think of?
Willie and chicken-fried steak. My grandmother’s recipe.
For more Jones, read Jeff McCord’s interview with her from the May issue of TEXAS MONTHLY. Below, video of Jones and Willie from two years ago, live at Farm Aid 25 in Milwaukee playing “Lonestar:”