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“Andy Langer, a well-respected music critic, invited me to dinner in Austin, and he asked some friends to tag along – it was Grace Potter & The Nocturnals. We got on great. To think that such an inauspicious beginning would lead to the band throwing their hats in the ring.
“What really surprised me was that Grace wanted to sing Tush! [laughs] A girl singing Tush? That was sure going to put a whole new spin on things. But let me tell you, she copped every note and nuance that Dusty performed on the original recording. She nailed it. It’s a cool, cool version, man!
“Because Grace had done her homework so well, she made all the right corner moves and took the heat off the rest of the band. It allowed them to loosen up and run with it. I’ve become a big fan of these guys.
“A sidenote: Grace told me she’d heard of my experience with Jamey Johnson and my Pura Vida tequila, so she said I had to taste her own brand of chocolate. It’s chocolate with jalapeno peppers in it! [laughs] How crazy is that? So this album is filled with music, tequila and chocolate.”