Jeff Bridges Turns Country Crooner with New CD

| by Michael Allen

Oscar-winner Jeff Bridges will release his self-titled album ‘Jeff Bridges’ on August 16, 2011, on Blue Note Records. The album was produced by Bridges’ 'Crazy Heart' collaborator, Grammy Award-winning songwriter and producer T Bone Burnett, whom he has known for more than 30 years.

Bridges and Burnett met in 1980 when Kris Kristofferson introduced them during the filming of the motion picture 'Heaven’s Gate.’ The relationship has continued over the years as Burnett selected the songs that appeared on the soundtrack to the 1998 film 'The Big Lebowski,' which starred Bridges.

Unlike a lot of actors who spin off a music career as a vanity project, Bridges says that he has been a musician since age 12: “It’s always been with me. Ever since I can remember, it’s been a great buddy.” And it’s a lot like acting, he adds. “They’re both about making yourself vulnerable and creating with other folks. They’ve got more in common than uncommon.”

(Photo by Unimedia EMI/Unimediaimages Inc.)

The CD features several of Bridges’ songs: ‘Falling Short,’ ‘Tumbling Vine’ and ‘I Will Wait’ (written with Burnett and John Goodwin). Burnett assembled a number of his key musicians as well as guest vocalists Rosanne Cash, Ryan Bingham, Sam Phillips and Benji Hughes.

Burnett also co-wrote several songs for the soundtrack to 'Crazy Heart', including ‘The Weary Kind,’ which earned Burnett an Oscar for Best Original Song. Will lightning strike again for Bridges and Burnett?  We'll find out next Tuesday.