Car Tunes: Willin’ – Little Feat

Technically this isn’t a “car tune”, it’s about a truck driver, but it’s one of the most beautiful road songs ever written. You probably are more familiar with Linda Ronstadt’s hit version of the song, but it was written by the late, great Lowell George, and first performed by the band he fronted, Little Feat. This is a live version from Little Feat in 1977, a couple of years before George died from drugs. The second video is Ronstadt performing the song at a memorial concert for George in ’79, backed by Nicolette Larson, Rosemary Butler & Emmylou Harris. George was one of those folks who are a musician’s musician. In addition to Ronstadt, Bonnie Raitt was a huge fan and recorded a number of George/Feat songs. Raitt, a notable slide guitar player, credits Lowell George with teaching her how to play slide. Below the fold is another live version, from Feat’s incomparable live album, Waiting For Columbus, arguably the best sounding live rock album ever, as well as the lyrics.

I been warped by the rain, driven by the snow
I’m drunk and dirty don’t ya know, and I’m still, willin’
Out on the road late at night, Seen my pretty Alice in every head light
Alice, Dallas Alice

I’ve been from Tuscon to Tucumcari
Tehachapi to Tonapah
Driven every kind of rig that’s ever been made
Driven the back roads so I wouldn’t get weighed
And if you give me: weed, whites, and wine
And you show me a sign
I’ll be willin’, to be movin’

I’ve been kicked by the wind, robbed by the sleet
Had my head stoved in, but I’m still on my feet and I’m still… willin’
Now I smuggled some smokes and folks from Mexico
Baked by the sun, every time I go to Mexico, and I’m still

And I been from Tuscon to Tucumcari
Tehachapi to Tonapah
Driven every kind of rig that’s ever been made
Driven the back roads so I wouldn’t get weighed
And if you give me: weed, whites, and wine
And you show me a sign
I’ll be willin’, to be movin

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One Response to Car Tunes: Willin’ – Little Feat

  1. noemdfan says:

    The Brooks and Dunn version on the Little Feat tribute album, “Join the Band,” is a worthy companion to the original: http://youtu.be/8D2izIVGznM

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