One listen won’t be enough for “Back to Earth,” a touching song about the letdowns of love. There are so many little nuances that will only come with subsequent playings. The ballad opens with the Mexican-tinged nylon strings of Willie’s acoustic guitar before a pedal steel gently hums the sad melody. Melonie opens with a confident yet tender voice, singing, “I guess my heart just settled back to earth” as the band creates an open landscape in which to catch her. As Willie begins to sing the second verse, the music has caught the listener as well, slowing time down not only to remember the finer points of traditional country music, but also to capture the essence of the feelings conveyed.
Willie may not receive first billing for this song, but it is most definitely classic Willie Nelson. He wrote the song, and it’s his guitar playing and melodies that carry the work. Ms. Cannon’s voice is excellent and a superb complement to Willie’s warm singing, but as the songs progresses, the listener can’t help but carve another notch in Willie’s lone star belt.