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Nathaniel Rateliff Releases Duet With Willie Nelson, ‘It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way’

The song has been released on Willie Nelson’s 88th birthday.

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Willie Nathaniel
Photo: Gary Miller/Getty Images

In celebration of Willie Nelson’s 88th birthday, Nathaniel Rateliff is releasing a rendition of the track “It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way,” originally recorded as a duet with Waylon Jennings.

“It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way” is available for purchase now as a limited edition 7” with an official digital release arriving later in May. The 7” also includes the previously released track “Willie’s Birthday Song,” which features Bobbie Nelson, Mickey Raphael, Lukas and Micah Nelson, Nikki Lane, members of The Night Sweats and more.

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The single, which is Rateliff’s first-ever duet with Nelson, marks the latest installment of The Marigold Singles Series, an ongoing project to raise money for Rateliff’s foundation, The Marigold Project, supporting community and nonprofit organizations working for economic and social justice.

“I really appreciated Nathaniel doing this song out of my catalog and it was a pleasure to sing with him,” notes Nelson. “Nathaniel and his band have been great friends and supporters of Farm Aid ever since we got to know each other six years ago.”

“Whether it has been watching Willie lead Farm Aid’s efforts to help the real farmers of America, fight for the sensible legalization of cannabis or take my money on the poker table, getting to know him has been a blessing. ‘It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way’ is a powerful song and it meant a lot to get to sing it with Willie. Having Mickey [Raphael] play so beautifully on it was icing on the cake,” adds Rateliff.

“Farm Aid is honored to be a beneficiary of this song to celebrate Farm Aid’s founder, Willie Nelson,” says executive director Carolyn Mugar. “We’re grateful that Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats and their foundation, The Marigold Project, are part of the Farm Aid family. The work they do to support so many communities and advance racial and social justice is critical, especially in these times.”

Nathaniel Rateliff and Willie Nelson’s “It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way” is available for purchase.

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