Music

Country Flashback: Willie Nelson and George Strait Share the Stage for the First Time

Photo by Al Wagner/Invision/AP

It's hard to believe, but two of Texas' greatest country music legends, Willie Nelson and George Strait, had never shared the stage before Saturday, January 19, 2020. That's the night when Strait and Nelson made history when they performed a brand new song during the Willie: Life & Songs of An American Outlaw tribute show at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena.

The legendary Texans couldn't have chosen a better song for their first-ever duet. Following an introduction by Ed Helms and a spirited response from the crowd, Strait launched into the then-unreleased song "Sing One With Willie." The tune, written by Strait, Nelson and Strait's son Bubba Strait, finds the King of Country lamenting the fact that he's never joined the long list of Willie collaborators. Nelson joins in midway through the song, giving his own nod to Strait's country icon status.

The all-star celebration of the Red-Headed Stranger featured performances by Kris KristoffersonAlison KraussLee Ann WomackChris StapletonJason IsbellMargo PriceBobby BareEmmylou Harris, Vince Gill, Eric Church, Jamey Johnson, Lukas Nelson, Micah Nelson, Nathaniel Rateliff, Jimmy Buffett, The Avett Brothers, Jack Johnson, Dave Matthews, John Mellencamp, Norah Jones and more.

Read More: The 10 Best George Strait Love Songs, Ranked

Later that year, Strait shared a studio version of "Sing One With Willie" on new album, Honky Tonk Time Machine.

This story originally ran on Jan. 21, 2019.

"Sing One With Willie" Lyrics

Well, I've had a wonderful career
But I think it's quite queer
So I'm writin' this down in a song
I just couldn't resist
'Cause it's a nice little twist
And I think you'll agree this is just wrong

I ain't never got to sing one with Willie
And I've held it inside long enough
Now I ain't too proud, I'm gonna shout it out loud
I ain't never got to sing one with Willie

Now I've heard him with Merle, Waylon, and Cash
Jones and Toby, that man is totally gracious
But I'm thinking, "Damn, why not me?"
We could even sing it on TV
Just like him and old Julio Iglesias

I ain't never got to sing one with Willie
And I've held it inside long enough
Now I ain't too proud, I'm gonna shout it out loud
I ain't never got to sing one with Willie

We've traveled back and forth
Up and down all the highways
Wherever our big buses can go
But I think that it's great
To finally sing one with Strait
And our friends will all love it, I know
(But I'm lovin' it, too, Willie)I finally get to sing one with Strait
Well, I think that it's been long enough
I'm mighty proud, just listen to the crowd
I finally got to sing one with George Strait

Look at me now, I'm singing with Willie
Thank you, man, you just made my career
Well, you shoulda said somethin', Strait
I always thought we'd sound great
And I finally got to sing one with ol' George

Yeah, I am really proud
So I'm shoutin' it out loud
I finally got to sing one
With ol' George, with ol' Willie

Now Watch: 10 Things You Didn't Know About George Strait

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Country Flashback: Willie Nelson and George Strait Share the Stage for the First Time