SHANNON MCNALLY covers Kris Kristofferson on new video

Article Contributed by Compass Records | Published on Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Shannon McNally has shared a new video from her highly regarded new album, THE WAYLON SESSIONS. The Nashville-based artist takes on Kris Kristofferson's "Help Me Make It Through the Night" with this  vulnerable rendition that captures the original's raw yearning for intimacy. Shannon told Popmatters, who premiered the video, that the song is “a masterpiece. A mountain of a song.

"I never heard Waylon sing this one. I don’t think he recorded it either. I cut it because I wanted to and I wasn’t in the mood for asking permission at the time, which seemed in keeping with Waylon’s modus operandi. When we were tracking it we were definitely aware of having to somehow bring something new or brave to it. I mean, this is a song where you either put up or shut up. We talked about the desperation and losing battle of closing time. The fellas are all barely playing their instruments and I tried to put as much reediness as I could get on my voice. Making a video for this song was a whole other level of vulnerability. I thought of it as a three-minute Sam Peckinpah film to make it as raw and fresh as it deserved to be.”

THE WAYLON SESSIONS finds McNally holding her own on these outlaw country songs, capturing Jennings’ mix of laid-back charm and swaggering bravado but adding a female perspective. “My goal wasn’t to force anything onto the music that wasn’t there already,” she explains.. “There’s a feminine perspective hidden somewhere inside each of these songs. My job was to find a way to tap into that and draw it out.” The result is that rare covers record that furthers our understanding of the originals; an album of classics that challenges our perceptions and assumptions about just what made them classics in the first place.

The album, which features guests Rodney Crowell, Lukas Nelson, Jessi Colter and Buddy Miller, has cracked the Top Ten of the Americana radio album chart and upcoming events include a Country Music Hall of Fame "Live at the Hall" episode that will be airing on July 20. She has also been added to the  Ghost Ranch Festival in New Mexico celebrating pioneering women in the arts along with Carlene Carter, Valerie June, Neko Case, and Margo Price. Look for additional tour dates to be announced soon.