Willie Nelson revealed during a recent interview on NBC‘s “Today” show that Kenny Rogers wanted him to record “The Gambler.”
“Through the years, him and I were big pals,” Nelson said about Rogers, who passed away on March 20. “In fact, he tried to get me to record ‘The Gambler.”
“We were somewhere, I don’t know, and he was like, ‘I think you should do it,’ and he played it for me and I said, ‘You know, I think it’s a great song, but I don’t think I’m going to do it,’ because at the time, I was doing a song every night called ‘Red Headed Stranger’ which has 100 verses in it,” Nelson told NBC‘s Jenna Bush Hager. “I just didn’t want to do another long song, so he said, ‘Okay, I will record it myself,’ so he did.”
Rogers recorded the song himself and released it in 1978. He got a Grammy Award for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male, in 1979.
Nelson, who recently released his 70th studio album, First Rose of Spring, said, “I enjoy making records and being in the studio and playing and singing and yes, I still enjoy writing.”
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