Friday, August 22, 2014

Lukas Nelson returns with Promise of the Real

Son of Willie Nelson proves musical talent is genetic

Express Staff Writer

Lukas Nelson entertains during a tour stop in the Wood River Valley last year. Photo by Willy Cook

    Musician Lukas Nelson is in the zone. He lives in a van, travels to more than 250 venues a year and doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon. Oh yeah—and he’s the son of country music superstar Willie Nelson.
    Nelson and his band Promise of the Real will play at Whiskey Jacques’ in Ketchum on Sunday, Aug. 24. They’ve performed at Whiskey’s several times over the past few years and Nelson said in an interview with the Idaho Mountain Express that he’s excited to return to the valley.
    Nelson and the band—he calls them road warriors—are prolific songwriters and music makers. Just yesterday, Aug. 21, Promise of the Real released the new song “Find Yourself,” which Nelson has said pays homage to his appreciation of soul music and its innovators. Undeniably soulful, the recording also has elements of ska and reggae, the latter a genre that started Nelson out in his career in his hometown of Paia, Maui.
    “I hope you find yourself/Before I find somebody else/To be my love,” he sings in the chorus.
    His high register twang suits both the band’s original songs and the oldies covers they favor from greats like J.J. Cale, Jimi Hendrix and Neil Young. Nelson is playing a benefit concert in Nebraska next month with Young and his father Willie to benefit Harvest of Hope, a food bank in Boulder, Colo.
    Nelson is an old soul when it comes to his appreciation for the music of the 60s and 70s, of which his father was a cornerstone.
    “To [cover these artists] right, you’ve had to been born into loving it,” Nelson said. “The word hippie has been turned into a negative. The point is, the vibe alive during that time never died.”
    His relationship with fans is fueled by a strong online presence; the Internet helps him connect with people on his own time, he said. Nelson posts regularly on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook and maintains a personal blog.
    “I do feel like we’re all in it together,” Nelson said.
    When asked if he misses an ordinary life, the travel-junkie Nelson laughed, answering the question with another question.
    “What’s a steady life?”
    Doors at Whiskey’s will open at 9 p.m. The show starts at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $18 plus tax online and $20 at the door. Nelson and his band will be accompanied by Ayron Jones and the Way, a Seattle-based “neo-blues” group.

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