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October 13, 2013

Like Ol' Man River . . .

. . . he just keeps rolling along: "The Story of Willie".

In his 80 years on this planet, Nelson has written something like 1,000 songs, recorded more than 100 albums, and won 10 Grammys. “Crazy” was rated the No. 1 jukebox song of all time, according to NPR. Performing professionally since he was a teenager growing up in little Abbott, Texas, he has, he estimates, spent at least half of every year since then either recording or touring, playing nightclubs, honky-tonks, outdoor arenas, concert halls, and every other venue imaginable. Somewhere in there he found the time to appear in more than 20 movies and a handful of television shows. He co-founded Farm Aid, which has raised $43 million to help America’s small farmers hang on to their land, and he sits on the board of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). He has also written seven books, including an autobiography and a novel, played at the White House, and sung at the wedding of Bill and Melinda Gates (his fee: $1 million). Last year the city of Austin erected a statue in his honor—larger than life, naturally.


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He has helped subsidize thousands of marginal producers who should have gone out of business long ago.

Michael Greenspan

Willie: An Autobiography is a great read, and Songwriter, co-starring Kris Kristofferson, is a smart, funny movie. Though one may need to like, or at least tolerate, country music to enjoy either.

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