Loving You features songs the late Bobbie Nelson and Amanda Shires have played and treasured their entire lives, and traces Nelson’s musical story and personal journey.
Amanda Shires’ mission in making Loving You is to pay respect to the only woman she saw working in a band and pursuing a career as a sideman. “I first saw Bobbie playing when I was 16 at some festival in Texas where I grew up,” she explains.
Bobbie Nelson's musical career dates back to the 1940s. Naturally gifted on the piano, she played in churches, revival tents, concert halls and honky-tonks, eventually joining her brother Willie Nelson's Family Band in the early `70s. Amanda Shires shares, "Much of my path seemed possible because I saw a woman working and making a career of music at a young age, and that woman was Bobbie Nelson. Loving You is a reflection on the life and music of Bobbie Nelson.”
“Loving You” is the only song Bobbie Nelson ever wrote on her own. It doesn’t have any words, but when you hear the melody you know what the song is about: family. Love of family, God, and music guided Bobbie through decades of struggle and triumph, chaos and peace.
Shires continues, "Bobbie Nelson’s life happened in revival tents and roadhouses, old theaters and glittering arenas, recording studios and church pews. She survived abandonment and abuse. Her children were taken from her, so she fought until she won them back. She was spiritual, determined, strong and generous with her love. She made a path for women, for mothers even, in the male-dominated music business. You can read her incredible story in the book Me and Sister Bobbie. You should, but you can hear who Bobbie was when you listen to her play the piano. Bobbie Nelson was a believer, a mother, an artist, a lover, a sister, a grandmother, and a friend. She passed away on March 10, 2022, just months after we spent 6 days together in Austin recording this album. We chose these songs because they’re songs that she loved, songs that meant the world to her and her personal journey. Through her music she will live on. From the first day in the studio, we knew we’d name this record 'Loving You,' because, Ms. Bobbie, we will always and forever be loving you."
Amanda and Bobbie got together in 2021 to record at Arlyn Studios in Austin, Texas, a facility co-owned and operated by Nelson’s son, Freddy Fletcher.