In the 20 years preceding "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," the #1 hit that made him a country superstar, Willie Nelson made numerous efforts to establish his performing career. His compositions were hits for other performers--"Hello Walls" was a success for Faron Young, and "Crazy" became one of Patsy Cline's signature songs--but Nelson couldn't seem to break through, although he charted just often enough to encourage him to keep trying. During these years Nelson recorded primarily for two labels, Liberty (1962-1965) and RCA (1965-1971). GREATEST SONGS collects ten recordings from this period.
The songs should be familiar to country fans, as most were either 1960s hits for other artists or were rerecorded by Nelson in the 1970s and 1980s. The arrangements might seem unusual, however, especially on the seven songs from Nelson's stay at Liberty, where producers tried to sweeten his sound with a chorus and string section. The set includes Nelson's biggest hit from the period, "Touch Me," as well as early versions of "Good Hearted Woman," "Night Life," and "Funny How Time Slips Away."