Don Was wears a lot of hats. In addition to his two “day jobs” as president of the storied jazz label Blue Note Records and bassist for the Grateful Dead, he’s also one of the most important record producers of the last thirty years, having worked with everyone from Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones to Al Green and Lyle Lovett. Among his best-known productions are “Something to Talk About” for Bonnie Raitt and “Love Shack” for the B-52s. But he calls Willie’s 1992 recording of “Across the Borderline” his favorite track he ever worked on.
On this episode of One by Willie, Don talks about cutting that song in Dublin with Willie, as well as the 1993 album that followed, which was also called Across the Borderline. It was an album that breathed new life into Willie’s career, and it prompts Don to discuss the fragile magic of a perfect first take, what it’s like to go out to eat with Willie and Ringo Starr, and the unusual sleeping arrangements Willie often makes when he’s out on the road.
We’ve created an Apple Music playlist for this series that we’ll add to with each episode we publish. And if you like the show, please subscribe and drop us a rating on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.