Monday, April 30, 2007

Happy Birthday, Willie

Willie Nelson, singer, writer, sometime actor and all-the-time living-to-his-own-smokin'-tune personality, is 74 today. I think he's simply one of the best songwriters ever. Case in point: did you know he authored "Crazy" the song made famous by Patsy Cline?

My personal favorite Willie song is "Always on My Mind." Haunting, sad, and well-suited to his grainy vocals.

Best Willie Album? For me, it's "Red Headed Stranger." Whether you're a fan of country music or not, you should give it a try for its storytelling. Beautiful stuff.

Feel free to put forth your own Willie opinions. Ever seen him live???


Blogger Kern said...

Sportatorium on Industrial in Dallas. 1982. Lanny Groves, Jeff Locke, Cary Reaves and I drove a 72 Ford pickup from Denton. Got Lost on the way, but made it in time for the 30 minute set of Whiskey River. We had a great time, even though we had no business being there. What an education. I can't believe they let us in, but they did and sold us beer as well. Proof the God is alive and loves his children. A few years later in 88, I shook his hand at Jones Stadium in Lubbock. I was surprised at how small he was. Willie is always worth the money. Happy Birthday

12:37 PM  
Blogger Travis Erwin said...

I too have seen Willie many times, In smoky barrooms, in dusty dry fields, in clean modern arena,I've seen him when he was drunk, high, and stone cold sober, From Amarillo to Luckenbacha nd variosu points inbetween, but the one common thing is I've always had a good time.

Wilie is the Godfather of Texas Country, which for the uninitiated is vastly different than the stuff Nashville cranks out.

If you haven't heard it check out the Bruse Robison song, What Would Willie Do? It is a fantastic play of words off the popular What Would Jesus Do slogan.

6:19 AM  
Blogger Buffy said...

I've always wanted to comb his hair. How odd is that?

6:01 AM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

I've seen Willie live a few times myself. Once at Billy Bob's in Fort Worth (great dancing) and once at the Houston Rodeo. He and Merle Haggard performed together. Poor Merle nearly fell offstage after forgetting his own lyrics. Apparently they'd been having a good time way before the show started. 'Tis the Willie way.

Love the 30 minute set of Whiskey River. I believe it's a standard in the lineup, and helps the late arrivals feel included.

Travis, couldn't agree more -- no matter his condition, Willie always puts on a great show. I'll have to check out the Robison song...I have a CD of his somewhere...

And as for wanting to comb Willie's hair, I believe that implies a gentle tenderness and concern for others. Way to live, Buffy!

8:03 AM  
Blogger Travis Erwin said...

I just heard some distressing news that for the first time ever Willie's Fourth of July picninc will not be held In Texas. Instead, the event is going to be in Washington state. Nothing against Washington, but this news is as disturbing to me as it would be if I heard they were going to start bottling Shiner Bock somewhere in Oklahoma. It just ain't right.

2:37 AM  
Blogger Desperate Writer said...

As a true Texan, I am ashamed to admit I've not seen Willie. Yet. But he's on my list!

3:38 PM  
Blogger Desperate Writer said...

You’ve been tagged!

I wrote EIGHT RANDOM THINGS ABOUT ME, and now I’d like to read about you. To get instructions, go to my blog at

It’s fun! I’ll be curious to know who you tag. :)

10:18 AM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

Don't worry, DW--I don't think Texas will revoke your membership!

11:30 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

I've seen Willie a couple of times, the last two or three years ago here in Lubbock, Texas. Midway through the show, this young woman ran on stage and sidled up next to Willie with her arm around him and snapped their picture. If security hadn't taken her off the stage, you would have thought it was part of the act. Willie seemed unfazed and never stopped singing. I always wondered if the girl got to keep her picture.

10:19 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I have seen Willie several times. It is a shame that the 4th of July picinic is not in Texas. He is worth any price to see.

I am sorry I did not get to say hi at the writers conference. I would see you then I would look at something look back and you were somewhere else. It seemed busy this year and I only really spent time in the book store.

3:05 PM  
Blogger dee said...

update your freakin blog....I don't care how many inspiring wanta bes you see in class.... you an 'already be' so let us know what's going on!!

8:38 PM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

It must be a difficult thing to faze Willie. I bet that photo is a prized family heirloom by now, if it turned out. Can you imagine the irony if the flash failed?

A book store is a great place to hang out, Jenn. (Here's me waving.) We'll catch up sometime 'round the bend.

And Dee, you crack me up. Love the Already Bes. Maybe a good t-shirt slogan?

9:34 AM  

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