May 14, 2009 — Kenny Chesney popped into Texas Tuesday to tape an episode of the PBS concert series, and in the process, he took a full-circle trip.
For starters, Kenny gave his first public performances of "Boats" and "Somewhere In The Sun," which has a connection to the Lone Star State's capital.
"'Somewhere In The Sun' is one of only two songs I've ever written on the road, and I wrote it not a mile from where we were taping," Kenny says. "So in a way, we closed the circle singing it here, because it all started when we were snowed out of our show down here one year."
It was also a full-circle moment because of Kenny's connection to Willie Nelson. Willie joined Kenny on the title cut of the Lucky Old Sun album, and Kenny produced Willie's 2008 album Moment Of Forever. Willie was the featured artist when "Austin City Limits" made its debut in the '7 0s.
"I don't really remember the first time I saw Willie Nelson, he always just was," Kenny notes, "but there's a part of me that's pretty certain it was on 'Austin City Limits,' because I saw an awful lot of my heroes on that show. You look around and you realize everyone, from Jerry Lee Lewis to George Jones to Ray Charles right up to now has played here, and you really want to be part of that history."
Elsewhere in the taping, Kenny brought out Mac McAnally for duets on "Down The Road" and "Back Where I Come From" and delivered "Young," "Summertime," "Beer In Mexico" and his current hit, "Out Last Night."
The episode will air in the fall. Meanwhile, Kenny appears on "Late Night With David Letterman" Tuesday, the same day he releases his Greatest Hits II.