Archive for August, 2008

Willie Nelson, Actor

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

Willie waits in the shadows for his cue on the Pair of Aces movie set. 

Willie introduces 15-month-old son Lukas to Kris Kristofferson

Willie Nelson Doll Goes Green

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

The Willie Nelson doll in Casper, WY

Last week I said to my Willie Nelson doll, “Hey, are you getting excited?  Willie’s coming back to Colorado!”

“Where’s he playing?” he asked.

“He’s playing up in Casper, then in Denver, and at Red Rocks, up in Morrison.”

“How we gettin’ there?” he asked.

“We get to drive,” I responded.  “That’s the great thing, we don’t have to fly down to Texas or anywhere.  You know how you hate to fly.”

“Well, what are we driving?  Did you get that Prius?”

“No, not yet. I’m waiting for the price to drop a little.  A lot, actually.”

 “Well, what about a car that runs on biodiesel?”

“No, no not yet.  My next car will though!”  “We’re taking my car,” I said, impatience growing, as he refused to join in my excitement.  “Hey, we get to see Willie next week!”

“Well, I’m not riding in that gas guzzler to Casper.”

“It’s so big and comfortable, though. You know how you like to stretch out! Okay, we can take the truck,” I said, trying to move on. 

“That ragged ole’ truck won’t make it to Wyoming.  I’m not riding in anything fueled on petroleum based fuels this year.”

“Well, I’m driving,” I said, “See you in Casper!”

So, Willie Nelson Doll met up with some like-minded extreme Green people going to the concert, and travelled up to Casper with them.

Here, they cross the Platte River

It took them a few days; they camped on the way.

They brought what they ate with them.  Their goat gave them milk.

The Willie Nelson Doll at Invesco Field.

He gets there early, for a good seat for the show.

I couldn’t do it his way, but I admire him for sticking to his convictions!

Sunday, August 31st, 2008


Willie Nelson at Kokua Festival (2006)

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

Willie and Annie Nelson at SeQuential Pacific biodiesel plant (8/29/08)

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

“Thank you Salem, thank you Oregon for being so forward and progressive in your thinking and showing the rest of the world, the rest of the United States, how to do it. You made bio-diesel mandatory in the trucks going across the highways in oregon. You did a lot for everybody else across the rest of the country.”

Thanks to for these pictures of Willie and Annie Nelson taken Friday at ribbon cutting for expansion of the SeQuential Pacific biodiesel facility.

Willie and Annie Nelson, Oregon Senate candidate Jeff Merkley, and others.

Willie Nelson and Jeff Merkley

Country singer and bio-fuels advocate Willie Nelson joined Oregon Senate candidate Jeff Merkley in celebrating the opening of the new bio-diesel plant in Oregon. It was amazing the see the size of the new plant, to learn about their efforts to make fuel from local products and of course….to see Willie Nelson! More below the fold….

SeQuential Pacific is the first commercial bio-diesel production plant in Oregon. The plant’s production of 5 million gallons of bio-diesel will trigger a new Oregon law requiring that 2% of diesel fuel in Oregon must be bio-diesel. SeQuential Pacific made sure to let folks know that their fuel should not be confused with corn ethanol.

SeQuential acquires local feedstock, cooking oil from local companies like Kettle Foods and Burgerville to make their fuel. They not only stress using local products to make their fuel, they also keep their carbon footprint small by using products within a 200 mile radius.

A Tale out of Luck, by Willie Nelson and Mike Blakely (review)

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

A Tale Out of Luck: A Novel
by Willie Nelson, with Mike Blakely
Publication:  September 3, 2008 


Almost anything that can happen in a Western novel does happen in this engaging action-thriller that pairs the multitalented Willie Nelson with another Texas author, singer and songwriter, Mike Blakely.Okay, there’s no big cattle drive, so, alas, no stampede. But this oddly titled book has plenty of other plot twists, as well as some slick marketing tie-ins. For example, Willie Nelson just happens to own a Western movie-set town called “Luck, Texas,” near Austin. And Mr. Blakely of Marble Falls previously has announced on his Web site that he has co-written a Western novel “designed to adapt to the big screen, with Willie himself playing the lead role.” A Tale Out of Luck does indeed move along like a novel grafted onto the bones of a screenplay. Still, it delivers a good day’s read, both for diehard Western fans and those who haven’t opened a shoot-’em-up in a while.Set a few years after the Civil War, the story revolves around a retired Texas Ranger, Capt. Hank Tomlinson, who has founded a little town called “Luck.” (“Wherever you go, you’re either in Luck or out of Luck, son,” he likes to say.) Tomlinson is good with guns, horses, tracking and (surprise!) music.

But he doesn’t get to spend much time drinking and entertaining in Luck after his prized Kentucky thoroughbred goes missing, and so do his two sons, Jay Blue and Skeeter. They were supposed to be guarding the thoroughbred, but now, fearing the old Ranger’s wrath, they have fled and are trying to recover the expensive race horse.

There’s more, of course. A shadowy, dangerous opponent from his Ranger days once again wants to kill Capt. Tomlinson. An inept Army officer has attacked and stirred up the local Comanches. And the Reconstruction Republicans ruling Austin have disbanded the Texas Rangers, set up a new state police force and sent a policeman on horseback to arrest Capt. Tomlinson on suspicion of murder.

Hey, but there’s still a little time for some pickin’ and grinnin’, folks, before and after the climactic battle scenes.

 A Tale Out of Luck is full-gallop entertainment, and it should be a reasonably lucky book for the two authors.

Si Dunn reviews books about Texas and the Southwest.

Paula Nelson on tour

Sunday, August 31st, 2008  
by Jack W. Hill

Being a child of a star is a mixed blessing, embraced by some, spurned by others. Some try to avoid the trappings and then reverse course.

Paula Nelson readily acknowledges she has a father named Willie. Nelson, that is. But she’s out to make her own kind of music, and is bringing it to Arkansas for the first time. Now on tour to promote her third album, Lucky 13, Nelson has lined up shows in central and Northwest Arkansas.

“The difference in what I’ve done and the latest is the band I now have,” Nelson says. “We’ve been together about three years and we all just work so well together.” Nelson’s band members are George Devore on acoustic guitar and vocals, Landis Armstrong on electric guitar and vocals, Matt Hubbard on keyboards, harmonica and vocals, Chris Johnson on bass and Kevin Remme on drums and vocals.

While her dad is renowned for his guitar playing, she is content to play keyboards and sing, and in person, singing is enough for her.

“I write with guitar and piano, and when I play, my musicians are so great, there’s no need for me to play piano on stage,” she explains. “I used to bring my keyboards with me to shows, but they’re heavy, and I wouldn’t want anyone to have to carry my stuff. And when I’m playing piano, I’m thinking, ‘Oh, God, I don’t want to mess up here !’” Before she realized that music was perhaps her true calling, she tried other pursuits in her rebellious years.

“I worked as a vet tech for a while, and I went to massage school,” she says. “And I was giving massages six days a week and I wanted to be on the table. Then I was a terrible waitress. I had to get away from music for a while to appreciate it.” As some might expect, Nelson declines requests to perform songs associated with her father’s career, although she’s found that many fans are not shy about requesting them.

“It depends on the bar I’m in, or what part of the country or how drunk the people are,” she laughs. “But I am reminded of that old joke: ‘How many girl singers does it take to sing “ Crazy” ?’ Apparently all of them ! I even was one of them years ago when I was 19 — I’m 38 now — and it was a karaoke scene, and I would sing it, thinking it was Patsy Cline who wrote it.

“I did do a couple of dad’s songs for a big celebration about his 75th birthday, where folks picked their favorites and my picks were ‘I Never Cared for You’ and ‘Don’t Wake Me Till It’s Over,’ and I found out the hard way that my favorite, ‘I Never Cared for You,’ was almost harder to sing than the national anthem.”

Her sound has been called “a little yodel mixed with jazz, blues, country and kick-butt rock ’n’ roll,” says the Texas Music Times magazine, as it praises five of the 13 songs on her Lucky 13 CD: “Fire Below,” “ Baby You’re Mean, ” “Find Your Way” and “Day to Day Love.” And speaking of “kick-butt rock ’n’ roll,” Nelson has a reputation for her skills in tae kwon do and also in stock car racing.

“Eight years ago, my dad got into tae kwon do, and now he’s a black belt and I am, too,” she says. “And I’ve always thought of a car as my sanctuary, and when the producer of Friday Night Lights, which is filmed here, called and asked me if I would be interested in a celebrity-type race, I jumped at the chance, and I came in second, beating seven guys and three girls. It was wonderful. I loved it, but it’s way more expensive of a hobby than I can afford.” If musical fame eludes her, she now has hope that maybe acting in movies is her ticket to fame. She has a part in Conflict of Interest, a movie due out next year in which she plays the mistress of Michael Madsen.

“My jaw dropped and hit the floor when I heard what my role would be,” she confesses. “I didn’t have to act at all for a love scene with him.”

Paula Nelson Band
6 p.m. Wednesday,
Sticky Fingerz Chicken Shack
107 Commerce St. 
(501 ) 372-7707

 9: 30 p.m. Thursday
George’s Majestic Lounge
519 W. Dickson St.
and Charlie Robison Admission:
(479 ) 442-4226

Another Willie Nelson Fan

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

Willie Nelson and Carl Smith

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

Willie Nelson and Roger Miller

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

Willie Nelson and Family in Central Point, Oregon TONIGHT!

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

Willie Nelson and Family will perform tonight in Central Point, Oregon, at the Lithia Motors Amphitheater at the Jackson County Fairgrounds.

For complete details and to order tickets, visit

Willie Nelson, Center for the Arts Fundraiser, Jackson Hole, Wyoming (8/23/08)

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

An old photo hanging in the Wort Hotel shows a fresh-faced young man,  a rakish smile hinting at an outlaw attitude.  It takes a second or third glance before you realize it’s a familiar face, and maybe a few more before you identify him:  Willie Nelson, circa 1962, in the Wort’s old Greenback Stage.

Willie has come back to Jackson many times since, but with 18 platinum and multi-platinum records, at least 20 #1 country hits, 8 Grammy awards and countless other honors to his name, the days of his playing small rooms are long gone.  Until now.  The Center for the Arts is proud to welcome the legendary artist back to Jackson Hole for an intimate evening in its 525-seat Center Theater.

A prolific recording artist and songwriter whose career spans six decades, his immortal hits include, “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys,” “Always on My Mind” and, with Julio Iglesias, “To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before.”  The man who penned Patsy Cline’s most famous tune, “Crazy,” has ventured into jazz – his 1978 album “Stardust” has gone platinum five times – and has a lengthy filmography both as an actor and a contributor to scores of soundtracks.  In 1981, he received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song (“On the Road Again” for the film “Honeysuckle Rose”).  His collection of Grammies includes the 2008 award for best country collaboration (“Lost Highway” with Ray Price), the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000 and the Legend Award in 1990.

A die hard activist, Nelson co-founded Farm Aid in 1985.  He is a biofuel pioneer, a business partner in two bio-diesel plants, and runs his tour buses on vegetable oil.  In January 2005 he headlined a benefit concert to help victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami. He is an honorary trustee of the Dayton International Peace Museum, and in April 2007, he founded the Willie Nelson Peace Research Institute.

Wille’s most recent albums are “Moment of Forever” (released Jan. 29, 2008, on Lost Highway Records) and, with trumpet king Wynton Marsalis, “Two Men with Blues” (released July 8, 2008, on Blue Note Records).  In addition, a four-disc, 100-song box set retrospective, “One Hell of a Ride,” was released in April.

Mark your calendar! Willie’s Nelson’s on Tour

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

August 30, 2008

Lithia Motors Ampitheater

Central Point, OR
August 31, 2008

Dimmick Ranch

Piercy, CA
September 1, 2008

Napa Valley Opera House

Napa, CA
September 3, 2008

Wente Vineyards

Livermore, CA
September 4, 2008

The Mountain Winery

Saratoga, CA
September 5, 2008

Ironstone Vineyards Theater

Murphys, CA
September 6, 2008

Santa Barbara Bowl

Santa Barbara, CA
September 7, 2008

Harrahs Rincon

Valley Center, CA
September 20, 2008

Farm Aid 2008
Comcast Center

Mansfield, Mass
September 21, 2008

Glen Falls Civic Center

Glen Falls, NY
September 23, 2008

Community Theater

Morristown, NJ
September 24, 2008

Mohegan Sun Arena

Uncasville, CT
September 25, 2008

Radio City Music Hall

Setember 26, 2008

Tower Theater

Upper Darby, PA
September 27, 2008

House of Blues

Atlantic City, NJ
September 30, 2008

Clay Center for Arts

Charleston, WV
October 2, 2008

Spartanburg Mem. Aud.

Spartanburg, SC
October 3, 2008

Hard Rock Cafe & Casino

Biloxi, MS
October 4, 2008

Julia Spears Hep C Foundation

Leiper’s Fork, TN
October 5, 2008

Tyson Date

Springdale, AR
Oct. 16,17, 2008

Horseshoe Casino Riverdome

Bossier City, LA
October 18, 2008

Bluesville Showroom

Robinsville, MS
October 22, 2008

Floore’s Country Store

Helotes, TX
October 25, 2008

Billy Bob’s Texas

Fort Worth, TX
October 26, 2008

The Back Yard

Austin, TX
October 31, 2008

House of Blues

Houston, TX
November 1, 2008

House of Blues

Houston, TX
February 9, 2009

Lincoln Center, with Wynton Marsalis


Another Satisfied Willie Nelson Fan, in Redmond, Washington

Saturday, August 30th, 2008


Emily, from Seattle, got to see Willie Nelson, and blogged about it at

Last night I stood within twenty feet of one of my heroes. 

It was epic.  If you can get tickets to Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again” tour, buy them now.  You will not regret it.  I saw him with my family last night in Marymore Park in Redmond, Washington.  The man is 75 years old, played for two hours straight, and sounded as good as he did in 1956.  And he played most everything for at least a minute or so–only an obsessive fanatic like me would know a few songs he didn’t play. 

On top of being a music and lyrical genius, Willie is a guitar god.  Most people don’t know that.  Willie is the lead (and only) guitarist in Willie Nelson and Family.  He solos in almost every song on this tour.  His guitar is so ancient and beat up that it has two holes in it, instead of just one.

As impressive as the quality and length of last night’s show were, I was even more impressed by how happy he made his audience.  Willie Nelson has been an active musician for fifty years and people have appreciated him for thirty.  Willie Nelson has been making people happy for thirty years!  That’s AMAZING!  And he seems to thoroughly enjoy himself while he’s at it.  He spent a good ten minutes signing autographs at the end of his show last night. 

Anyone who had something for him to sign (and had bought the $70 seats–the most expensive seats offered) could bring their piece of memorabilia to the stage and he’d sign it.  When people were out of things to sign he shook their hands.  I didn’t try for an autograph–I don’t really understand the autograph thing.  I wouldn’t have said no to a handshake, though.  Sigh.