Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis Two Men with the Blues (EMI) Every now and then the stars just seem to align. And, thankfully, sometimes there's someone in the hall who's smart enough to press the record button. Such was the case in January last year when New York's Jazz at the Lincoln Centre showcased the talents of two artists who, on paper at least, would seem to come from opposite ends of the musical world. Jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis is ordinarily one of the jazz world's purists, while Willie Nelson is, well, Willie Nelson. Country music's guitar-toting gun for hire with that withered and wonderful nasal whine. But Nelson has always been up for a challenge - and has been known to belt out the odd bit of blues - and Marsalis is at heart a man who rejoices in all forms of music. So they were handed a selection of blues standards, asked to gather some friends together, and told to get up on stage. And man do they work some magic. In adding his special flavour to the likes of Bright Lights Big City - and revisiting songs like Stardust and Georgia on My Mind - Nelson shows his genius, allowing that crackle of his to drift effortlessly in and out. For his part, Marsalis - with sax, bass, piano and drums following behind - lets rip only when he has to, relying instead on the strength of the music they're playing. He even joins Nelson for a while singing along on Ain't Nobody's Business - and you can almost hear them smiling.