Big Hassle Media
About Ronnie Milsap:
Ronnie Milsap, blind since childhood, has used music to navigate the world. Beyond his Top five R&B hit “Never Had It So Good,” written by Ashford & Simpson and issued on Scepter Records, from 1974 through 1991, Milsap placed 48 consecutive hits on Billboard‘s Country’s Top 10. A six-time Grammy-winner, known for “Please Don’t Tell Me How The Story Ends,” “Smoky Mountain Rain,” “Prisoner of the Highway,” “Lost in the ’50s Tonight,” and “There’s No Getting Over Me,” the CMA Entertainer/Album/Male Vocalist of the Year winner has charted singles in each of the last six decades.
RONNIE MILSAP IS PUTTING THE FINISHING TOUCHES ON THE DUETS
2014 HALL OF FAME INDUCTEE CELEBRATES WITH COUNTRY, ROCK & ROOTS FINEST
(Nashville, TN) Ronnie Milsap loves nothing more than good music. For the man who started his career playing the Apollo and Howard Theaters, auditioned for rock legend JJ Cale’s band at LA’s famed Whiskey A Go Go, played piano on Elvis Presley sessions, where the King commanded, “More thunder on the keys, Milsap” – and finally hit pay dirt in Nashville where he who not only dominated country and adult contemporary in the ’80s, but was country’s first video on MTV, mixing it up comes as natural as breathing.
To that end, the man Ray Charles told to forget about that scholarship to Rice University “because the music is inside you” is putting finishing touches on a very special Duets collection, embracing legends, rockers, newcomers, current stars and even Leon Russell’s final recording, Duets samples from all of the genres Milsap loves.
“People worry about labels, I worry about music,” says the genial legend. “To me, especially with this project I’ve been quietly working on for a few years, it was about having fun in the studio, collaborating with different folks and finding things that made us smile, or find common ground.
“When I did the ACM special with Luke Bryan in Texas, hearing what ‘Stranger in My House’ meant to him, I thought, ‘Well, we ought to make a record of it.’ For Willie and I, who’ve been up and down these same highways for years, the idea of singing together always lights me up – and I had a Mike Reid song I’d been saving for something special. Turns out Willie liked it so much, he cut it himself… and I don’t know which version I like better.”
“A lot of today’s country singers make records with an R&B influence, but they have nothing on Ronnie Milsap,” USA Today praised his 2013 Summer #17. CMA Close-Up also recognized the Entertainer of the Year’s love of myriad styles, “Milsap had no fear of mixing the genre’s past and building his sound on what he retrieves,” and the Tennessean agreed, “Milsap has long thrived by ignoring genre distinctions…”
Having so much fun, he and longtime producer Rob Gailbraith overcut. Now they are down to final mixes and selections for what is being called Ronnie Milsap Duets. Out of love and friendship, this collection has grown and grown. Now via Riser House Records/The Orchard/Sony, the project is being readied for release.
Blind since childhood, Milsap has used music to navigate the world. Beyond his Top 5 R&B hit “Never Had It So Good,” written by Ashford & Simpson and issued on Scepter Records, From 1974 through 1991, Milsap placed 48 consecutive hits on Billboard’s Country’s Top 10. Beyond his Grammy-winning “Please Don’t Tell Me How The Story Ends,” he’s known for “Smoky Mountain Rain,” “Prisoner of the Highway,” “Lost in the ’50s Tonight,” “There’s No Getting Over Me” and so many more.
“Any chance I can make music, I’m a happy man,” Milsap says. “But when I can get in the studio with people I love and respect, that’s the kind of day I live for. There are some new friends here, some old friends and some surprises. Deciding what’s going to make it is tough, but that’s a great problem to have. The only thing tougher now is waiting to be able to share these recordings with everyone else.”
# # #
RONNIE MILSAP’S ALL-STAR, GENRE-SPANNING NEW ALBUM, THE DUETS, SET TO BE RELEASED JANUARY 18, 2019
(Nashville, TN) Two years in the works, Ronnie Milsap: The Duets (Riser House/Sony) is done, and slated for release at the top of the new year. The 13-track collection, spanning mainstream country, Christian, Americana, rock & roll and roots music, will be released January 18, 2019. To give longtime fans a taste of what the eclectic project contains, the six-time Grammy winner teamed with People and Relix to debut the first tracks, available at all digital retail outlets now.
People offered Kacey Musgraves’ spunky duet of the 1982 Grammy-winning “There’s No Getting Over Me,” creating a boy-girl frisson that sparks the original’s mid-tempo cautionary rejoinder. As reported exclusively at People, the country legend said of their duet, “Singing with Kacey is so much fun. She’s a pure vocalist and knows how to lean into a melody. Having her on this gave the song a whole new twist, which is what music is all about. How do you take what you know and make it even more?”
Recorded at Ronnie’s Place, the studio the former Entertainer of the Year exactingly built at the height of his success, Ronnie Milsap: The Duets marries his much loved hits with a few new gems.
“A Woman’s Love,” Milsap’s duet with Willie Nelson, premiered at Relix today. Ironically, Nelson so took to the track, he ended up recording the Mike Reid-penned song on his own God’s Problem Child project.
“It’s a compliment to me that Willie loved the song enough to want to record it on his own,” Milsap explains. “It says so much about the quality of the song, because the best songs want to be recorded over and over. Ray Charles heard ‘Lets Go Get Stoned’ all those years ago, and he cut it. It just shows how universal music can be, and how it brings people together.”
LISTEN TO RONNIE MILSAP AND KACEY MUSGRAVES
LISTEN TO RONNIE MILSAP AND WILLIE NELSON
Co-produced with long-term collaborator Rob Galbraith, Ronnie Milsap: The Duets also includes collaborations with fellow Entertainers of the Year Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, George Strait and Dolly Parton, as well as CMA winners Little Big Town and Montgomery Gentry, on what may be Troy Gentry’sfinal recordings. The album also features collaborations with Rock icon Billy F. Gibbons, Christian music’sSteven Curtis Chapman, newcomers Lucy Angel and Jesse Key, as well as with Leon Russell for what is probably the Songwriters and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer’s last recording.
With its roots in the Academy of Country Music 50th Anniversary Duets special, where Milsap sang “Stranger in My House” with Luke Bryan, Ronnie Milsap: The Duets served as a floating jam session. Merging legends, superstars, young artists and myriad generations, the project was met with enthusiastic support from the many collaborators.
The critics agree — USA Today wrote of his 2013 Summer #17, “A lot of today’s country singers make records with an R&B influence, but they have nothing on Ronnie Milsap,” CMA Close-Up also recognized his genre-smearing sound, explaining, “Milsap had no fear of mixing the genre’s past and building his sound on what he retrieves” and The Tennessean praised, “Milsap has long thrived by ignoring genre distinctions…”
# # #
RONNIE MILSAP: THE DUETS
JANUARY 18, 2019
1. Southern Boys and Detroit Wheels ft. Billy Gibbons
2. Stranger in My House ft. Luke Bryan
3. Smokey Mountain Rain ft. Dolly Parton
4. Prisoner of the Highway ft. Jason Aldean
5. A Woman’s Love ft. Willie Nelson
6. Happy Happy Birthday ft. Lucy Angel
7. No Getting Over Me ft. Kacey Musgraves
8. Lost in the Fifties ft. Little Big Town
9. Houston Solution ft. George Strait
10. What a Woman Can Mean to a Man ft. Jessie Key
11. Misery Loves Company ft. Leon Russell
12. You’re Nobody ft. Steven Curtis Chapman
13. Shakey Ground ft. Montgomery Gentry
# # #