First, Ronnie Wood solos on the Kristofferson-penned title track. Then, The Killer duets with Kid Rock while Slash solos madly. After duets with Mic Jagger and Tim McGraw (boo!), Clapton and longtime Presley guitarist James Burton trade licks while Eric harmonizes. Duets with Sheryl Crow and Merle Haggard precede Ringo drumming and John Mayer soloing on some Chuck Berry with Jerry Lee providing the piano and preternaturally strong vocals (he’s 75) as he does throughout.
Although I wish the Stones’ “Sweet Virginia” wasn’t censored (“shine” instead of the rightful “shit”), it’s still a stone doozy with Keith Richards playing and singing right along with him.
When New Orleans royalty like Ivan Neville provides the Hammond B-3 organ for the righteous Soloman Burke on a gospel duet, it feels like church back in The Killer’s Ferriday, Louisiana hometown.
And how classic is it when John Fogerty harmonizes and solos on his own “Bad Moon Rising?”
Or when Willie Nelson duets on his own “Whiskey River?”
How ‘bout a Mavis Staples soul-stirrer with Robbie Robertson on guitar and Nils Lofgren on lap steel?
On his last album, Last Man Standing, he had the balls to open with Led Zeppelin’s “Rock And Roll” make it his own, country slur and all, and have Jimmy Page help him do so.
Mean Old Man is even better. It’s more relaxed. Take his vocal on Kristofferson’s “Sunday Morning Coming Down,” for instance, the greatest song ever written about a hangover. When The Killer sings it, you believe it. Period.
In A Word: Heaven