If I were to tell you that Norah Jones is one of the vocalists for this band, you might think that this is a jazzy pop group. You would be wrong. The Little Willies, in addition to their own songs, cover tunes by Hank Williams, Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson. I'm not going to lie to you, it's a treat to hear Norah Jones on songs like "I'll Never Get Out" and "Gotta Get Drunk." It's especially great to do what sounds like an impression of Candye Kane in "Lou Reed."
Whoever shares the vocals with Norah Jones on "I'll Never Get Out" (I'm afraid I don't have the liner notes) sounds a bunch like Lyle Lovett. In fact, the overall mood of the album is similar to a Lyle Lovett album. This band features some twangy guitar ("It's Not You It's Me), honky tonk piano ("Love Me") and excellent harmonies, among other things. Their version of "Best of All Possible Worlds" is excellent. It will get your toes tapping for sure. I'd love to hear this one performed live.
Actually, that brings me to another point about this band. This seems like a band that would play at your local dive or honky tonk. Specifically, I can imagine this band playing at a place called The Swallow's Inn in San Juan Capistrano. I think that's pretty astonishing for a band that features a Grammy award winner. There aren't many artists with that sort of mass appeal that I could imagine being comfortable in a small dive bar.
According to their website, this band was formed after an evening of playing music together at the Living Room in Manhattan. All I can say is that I'm glad they came together, whatever the reason is. This is a really good album, especially for when you're just chillin' (if that's what the kids still say).