First broadcast on US television in 1985, Nelson is in typically restrained mood on the stage of the Austin Opera House in Texas, rattling through a selection of his best known tunes to a curiously reserved audience of good ol’ boys. Maybe it’s the presence of the cameras, but the crowd seem reluctant to indulge in the whoops and hollers we’ve come to expect at Nelson gigs.
Charles joins the festivities for just four songs, including the pair’s then-current single Seven Spanish Angels, sitting side-by-side at one piano. Nelson adds a world-weary tone to Ray’s I Can’t Stop Loving You, and they share verses on Georgia On My Mind, the Hoagy Carmichael standard that’s been good to them both down the years.
Concert footage is interspersed with rehearsals from earlier in the day, including a downhome romp through the country classic Mountain Dew, and one of Nelson’s lesser performed masterpieces, My Window Faces The South. There’s more of a spark in these sections, the layers letting rip without subdued punters to dampen the mood.