Archive for August, 2010

Win Tickets to see Willie Nelson at Wente Vineyard (9/13/2010)

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

www.ktvu.com

This week, one lucky Ticket 2′s Day winner at KTVU will receive a pair of dining tickets to see Willie Nelson at Wente Vineyard in Livermore on Monday, September 13th. All you have to do is watch Mornings On 2 Tuesday to get the secret word and then enter the contest. In addition to seeing Nelson perform in the stunning ambiance of a spectacular vineyard setting, the winner and a guest will also enjoy a meal from the Wente’s award-winning restaurant.

Country Legend Hits The Road Again

Legendary country songwriter Willie Nelson could easily be resting on his laurels at this point in his 50+ year career, staying home and letting the royalties from the sale of his voluminous back catalogue keep him and his extended family well fed for decades. Instead, the septuagenarian troubadour insists on touring the world for at least 250 days a year, playing marathon three-hour concerts all the while.

Though country industry insiders couldn’t envision the plump Texan with the quavering, nasal voice and jazzy behind-the-beat delivery as a singing star, there was no denying Nelson’s talent for songwriting. “Hello Walls,” “Funny How Time Slips Away” and Patsy Cline’s famous take on “Crazy” all became big hits, but the singer’s own career sputtered with fits and starts throughout the ’60s as he fought against the slick orchestrations that had become standard. It wasn’t until Nelson cultivated a younger rock audience interested in classic, stripped-down honky tonk during the next decade that his career took off.

After the initial crossover success of ‘The Red Headed Stranger’ in 1975, Nelson was credited as a pioneer of the “outlaw” country movement along with fellow mavericks Waylon Jennings and Jessie Coulter. He recorded duets with everyone from Merle Haggard to Julio Iglesias, started acting in films, charted an album of pop standards (‘Stardust’) and formed the country supergroup The Highwaymen with Kris Kristofferson and the late Jennings and Johnny Cash in the process of becoming an American pop icon. Still producing vital music after all these years — recent efforts have included his Grammy-nominated collaborative album with fellow country legends Asleep at the Wheel, his Blue Note exploration of jazz standards ‘American Classic’ and his duet-heavy collection ‘Lost Highway’ — Nelson is one country artist every true music fan should experience live at least once.

To enter the contest click here.

“Willie Nelson was on fire”

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

 

That’s a direct quote from George,  who is one of those fans who goes back to the hotel after a Willie Nelson & Family concert, and sends me pictures.  Whattaguy.  Thanks, George!  He sent these from the Las Vegas Hard Rock Cafe in Las Vegas in 2007.

“Hi, Linda.
 
An up-to-the-minute report from the Road…just got back to our hotel room from the show.
 
At the last minute my wife and I decided to head to Las Vegas for tonight’s show at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel.  I’ve attached a few photos for the blog.  Enjoy!
 
George
San Diego
 
PS.  It was a great show.  Willie was on fire!”

Lukas Nelson & the Promise of the Real; Micah Nelson & the Reflectacles concert at Waterfront Concert Theater (9/9/2010)

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

The Waterfront

September 9 · 8:00pm – 11:30pm

Location The Waterfront

4211 Admiralty Way
Marina del Rey, CA

Venue:

More Info
Come join the party at The Waterfront on Thursday, Sept 9! Great lineup, great venue, right on the water, plenty of fun!

Doors: 7:30pm

Instant People – 7:30-8:15

Willie Nelson receives leadership award in Nashville

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Photo:  Kay Williams

Willie Nelson receives award from Brenda Lee.

“I want to thank all of my friends, and all the people in this town, that made it possible for me to be standing here.  Hearing all these nice things said about me – I almost gave myself a standing ovation.   I held back, though.” — Willie Nelson

www.billboard.biz
by:  Elizabeth Hurst

The music community came together in Downtown Nashville on August 29 to celebrate pioneers Fred Foster, Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson with the seventh annual Leadership Music Dale Franklin Award. Vince Gill hosted the ceremony for a packed room of music industry executives, creators, friends and family. The Leadership Music Dale Franklin Award was created “to recognize music trailblazers who exemplify the highest quality of leadership and leading by example.”

Photo:  Kay Williams

Kyle Young, Director, Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum; Karen Oertley, Executive Director, Leadership Music; honorees Kris Kristofferson, Fred Foster and Willie Nelson; Jamie Cheek, Board President, Leadership Music and Partner, Flood, Bumstead, McCready & McCarthy; and Del Bryant, President & CEO, BMI.

Congratulations, Paula Nelson!

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Willie Nelson and Fred Foster

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Thanks to Alice from Georgia for finding more pics from the Nashville tribute to Willie Nelson, Fred Foster, Kris Kristofferson.  The newspaper the Tennesseean posted pictures from the event at their site, www.tennessean.com.

Willie Nelson & Friends at Neil Abercrombie for Governor Fundraiser (8/24/2010)

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

yelvisthecat2 has posted videos from the Neil Abercrombie for Governor fundraiser last week.   Here’s a couple, but he has posted 8 segments from the show at his site.  Follow the link over to YouTube to see them all.  Thanks, Y-Elvis!

fifth year of still is still moving blog

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

carolby8

Can’t believe it, but I started this blog four year ago today.  And I just want to thank Willie Nelson for all the enjoyment his music has brought me and continues to bring me.  And thanks to Willie Nelson fans and family and friends, photographers and authors and producers and djs for sending me pictures and stories and links about Willie Nelson and Family, for me to share with other fans from all over the world who check into this blog for news about Willie.  Like Carol, from NY, who took this great photo of Willie, connecting with a fan at a concert, giving someone a memory they will treasure forever.

Just checked, and this is my 9,464th post about Willie at my blog.  When I started this someone asked if I thought there was enough information about Willie Nelson to blog every day.  Well, I can’t keep up or catch up.  I have so many magazines and clippings and pictures that people have given me, or that I’ve purchased off e-bay, or found somewhere, and Willie is always in the news.  Then, there’s his talented family who are always busy creating, too.  Yep,  I could blog full time and not get it all up here.  So much Willie; so little time.

Thank you, Willie Nelson, for all the enjoyment you continue to give me and to all your fans who love you so much.

Willie Nelson, ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters’

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Farm Aid Still Matters

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010


www.FarmAid.org

www.care2.com
by: Judi Gerber

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Farm Aid. In 1985, Willie Nelson, Neil Young, and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm-families on their land.

Organized during the “farm crisis” of the 1980s, twenty-five years later the economic conditions of that time seem to be repeating, and their work remains just as important.

But the group is about more than just an annual concert; it works year-round on behalf of family farmers and good food and their mission remains the same: to keep family farmers on their land.

To date, the nonprofit organization has raised over $37 million and they work to promote food from family farms, grow the good food movement, help farmers, and take action to change the food/farming system.

As they say, “family farmers in the United States are under extreme economic pressure and thousands are pushed off their land every year. This crisis in farm country is threatening the very existence of the family farm in America. As family farms are forced out by large, factory farms, the quality of our food, our environment and our food security is in danger.”

As I have written about before  family farmers are important because they provide economic vitality to their communities, grow high quality food, and are stewards of the land working to protect the soil, air, water and biodiversity.

Some of the ways Farm Aid helps farmers include developing The Farmer Resource Network, 1-(800) FARM-AID, to provide immediate support services to farmers in crisis. Now the network is also online and it connects farmers to an extensive network of resources across the country to help find new markets, transition to more sustainable and profitable farming practices, and survive natural disasters.

They also point out that family farmers can only thrive if there are markets for them. Farm Aid works to connect farmers and eaters by creating local and regional markets, and working to get family farm food in urban neighborhoods, restaurants, schools, and other public institutions.

The group’s main event remains the iconic, yearly concert featuring the founders and others raising money for America’s family farmers.

This year’s concert, called “Farm Aid 25: Growing Hope for America” is focusing on sustainable practices on farms and local and regional food systems. It takes place Saturday October 2 at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

In addition to board members Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, and Dave Matthews (who joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001), this year’s line up also includes Kenny Chesney, Norah Jones, Jason Mraz, Jeff Tweedy, Band of Horses, The BoDeans, Amos Lee, and Robert Francis. Tavis Smiley is hosting the event.

The concert is part of an all day-festival that features HOMEGROWN vendors, family farmed, local and organic food, and the HOMEGROWN Village that “give concertgoers a chance to meet farmers, get their hands dirty and learn how family farmers are growing good food, protecting our natural resources and connecting us to our roots.”

You can fan Farm Aid on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, and check out one of their newest ventures HOMEGROWN. It encourages people to get good food from family farms.

You can also get involved in Farm Aid’s Action Center where concerned citizens can become advocates for farm policy change. Part of this work includes working alongside farmers to protest family farms and inform farmers and eaters about issues such as growth hormones and genetically modified foods. 

Judi Gerber is a University of California Master Gardener with a certificate in Horticultural Therapy. She writes about sustainable farming, local foods, and organic gardening for multiple magazines. Her book Farming in Torrance and the South Bay was released in September 2008.

Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster receive leadership awards in Nashville

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

“He’s done more for this country as a man than just about anybody.”  “He’s a great mentor and a great man to look up to. He is truly what I think America is about at its best. He’s got some great eclectic fans, all over the world, that love Willie.”

- Vince Gill

www.cmt.com
by Craig Shelburne

Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson and record producer Fred Foster graciously accepted awards honoring their unique leadership in country music during an invitation-only event on Sunday night (Aug. 29) in Nashville.

During the quick-moving, two-hour ceremony at the Renaissance Hotel, the three men each received the Dale Franklin Award and were serenaded by friends like Rodney Crowell, Jamey Johnson, Lyle Lovett, Lorrie Morgan, Dolly Parton, Randy Travis, Lee Ann Womack and several others. The award is named for the first executive director of Leadership Music, an industry networking organization that hosts the annual gala event.

While introducing Nelson, host Vince Gill brought laughs by carrying a brownie to the stage, which he said was a gift from Nelson.  He also elicited a round of whoops and hollers when he said Nelson’s face belonged on Mount Rushmore.

“He’s done more for this country as a man than just about anybody,” Gill said. “He’s a great mentor and a great man to look up to. He is truly what I think America is about at its best. He’s got some great eclectic fans, all over the world, that love Willie.”

Johnson crooned a few lines from Nelson’s poetic 1974 album, Phases and Stages, before easing into a commanding acoustic rendition of “Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground.” Morgan came on next with a sultry “Crazy,” while Travis followed with a low-key “Funny How Time Slips Away.”

After the musical portion, Brenda Lee recalled meeting Nelson when she was a child and praised his kind personality.

“You don’t get any more real than Willie,” she said. “I’ve known him since I was 10 years old, and all these years later, I can honestly say that Willie Nelson hasn’t changed a bit. More important than that, the spirit of Willie Nelson has never changed. … I’ll tell you, Willie may look laidback, but he is absolutely one of the most disciplined, focused people I have ever known when it comes to his craft. I’ve always wondered how somebody could be that laidback and cool and still get so much done.”

Lee spoke briefly about a 1982 album that featured Kristofferson, Nelson, Parton and herself titled The Winning Hand, which was produced by Foster.

“What a joy to get to record with someone who was one of my musical heroes when I was just a child and who turned into a dear friend,” she said. “We all know how rare someone like Willie is as an artist, a prolific songwriter and as a human being. And I’m so happy that I could be here tonight to celebrate and honor him.”

After thanking the entertainers and presenters, Nelson spoke of “a town that’s been really good to me — Nashville, Tennessee,” earning a grateful round of applause. “I want to thank all of my friends, and all the people in this town, that made it possible to be standing here, getting all these nice things said about me. I almost gave myself a standing ovation. I held back, though.”

When the laughter died down, Nelson added, “Somebody asked me if I was writing any songs, and I’ve got a couple of lines going. One of them starts out, ‘You gotta go crazy to know how I feel/I’m taking back shit that I didn’t even steal.’ So I’ll let you all know how that one turns out and if we can get some play somewhere. But anyway, thank you all very much for a wonderful, wonderful evening, and I appreciate it very much.”

Kristofferson’s unusual career trajectory — Rhodes Scholar, U.S. Army captain, helicopter pilot, Columbia Records’ janitor, acclaimed songwriter — brought an distinct element of storytelling into tribute speeches from music publisher Bob Beckham, business associate Tamara Saviano and quirky singer-songwriter Lyle Lovett. Bandleader Shawn Camp, who was celebrating a birthday, led the musical tribute with “Sunday Morning Coming Down,” which he said reminded him of his Sunday walks when he first moved to Nashville. Lovett offered the essential “Me and Bobby McGee” (which Foster co-wrote) while Lee Ann Womack concluded the set with an exquisite reading of “Lovin’ Her Was Easier (Than Anything I’ll Ever Do Again).”

Accepting his award, Kristofferson told the audience he was speechless.

“To be up here, getting an award along with Fred Foster and Willie Nelson, is something that I’ve got to feel like I was dreaming,” he said. “I forgot everything I wanted to say before I got up here, and I can’t remember anymore. My memory’s gone bad, but I’m so honored to be up here with Fred Foster and Willie Nelson. I can’t tell you what it means to me.”

As a music publisher for Combine Music and founder of Monument Records, Foster helped lay the career groundwork for artists like Kristofferson, Roy Orbison and Dolly Parton, as well as Larry Gatlin, Billy Grammer, Boots Randolph, Jeannie Seely, Billy Swan and Tony Joe White. His recent credits include producing Nelson’s 2006 album, You Don’t Know Me: The Songs of Cindy Walker, and a 2007 collaborative album with Merle Haggard, Nelson and Ray Price called Last of the Breed, which won a Grammy. Gill told the audience that Foster’s advice to aspiring producers was simply to “frame the picture,” thus allowing the artist to be the focus of attention, not the frame.

For the first song of the night, Crowell chose Orbison’s catchy “Dream Baby (How Long Must I Dream).” The tune received a boost from famed harmonica player Charlie McCoy, who followed with a lively instrumental take on “Today I Started Loving You Again.” Swan then revived “I Can Help,” his energetic No. 1 pop and country hit from 1974.

A surprise guest, Parton treated the crowd to her perky 1967 hit single, “Dumb Blonde,” which was her first release on Monument Records. She also spoke highly of the early days of Combine and Monument in Hendersonville, Tenn. She said she remembered knowing Kristofferson and Nelson before any of them became country music icons.

“They were all sitting out there writing and working and I was running in and out,” she said. “They were all clean-shaven and handsome boys then — and they’re still pretty. It’s amazing how far we’ve come and how many miles we’ve traveled.”

Parton said Foster believed in her when nobody else did.

“He saw something that a lot of people didn’t see, and a lot of people argued with him about,” she noted. “Fred, thank you for believing in me. And thank you for helping me get started on a wonderful life. I wouldn’t take nothing for the years I spent with you. When I went to work with Porter Wagoner, you were always gracious enough to let me go, although you had spent all that time and money trying to dress me down, clean me up and make me look like somebody I wasn’t! You finally gave up on that and said, ‘Oh, hell, she can’t be no pop star. Let’s just let her sing what she wants to.’”

After exchanging a few loving words with Parton, Foster joked with the audience about his humble origins in North Carolina, saying that nothing there could have compared to this event.

“Well, I’m just happy to be here and so happy to be a part of this music family,” he said. “I never really envisioned this sort of stuff when I started out. I had the choice to become an executive with Marriott, because Mr. Marriott wanted to send me out to Salt Lake [City] to go to school, or to go into music, so I chose music, thank God.

“What moves me so much tonight is that so many of my old friends are here. Most of the time, I get to see my old friends at a funeral, and this is a far better venue by a damn sight, if you ask me! I’ve had wonderful experiences with wonderful people, talented beyond describing.”

At the conclusion of the night, Gill encouraged the younger people in the audience to learn from the honorees, then invited all the musicians on stage to sing Nelson’s anthem, “On the Road Again,” a fitting tune for three longtime friends who remain iconic figures in country music.

Another Willie Nelson Fan: Joe Nick Patoski

Monday, August 30th, 2010

 

Joe Nick Patoski wrote this great biography about Willie Nelson in 2008, but he has been a fan of Willie Nelson and writing about his music and life, for decades.    The following article was  first published in No Depression Magazine in 2004.   Visit Joe Nick’s website to read the entire article, at www.JoeNickP.com :

 

Gonna Catch Tomorrow Now

No Depression
BY JOE NICK PATOSKI
September-October 2004 

LUCK, Texas, isn’t as easy to find as it used to be. Development has sprawled the entire 25 miles from downtown Austin to this idyllic little spot in the Hill Country near Lake Travis where Willie Nelson created his own universe more than two decades ago. The old corner store that was once a landmark is now a bank. The entrance gate is practically lost among the McMansions and ranchettes that have sprouted up.

This fact of life is not lost on the guy in the Willie Nelson T-shirt driving the mower over the fairway of the Briarcliff Country Club. After providing directions to a wayward tourist, he wisecracks, “Welcome to Oak Hill,” referring to the suburb fifteen miles closer to the city.

Still, there’s enough acreage surrounding Luck that once you stumble onto the dirt main street, you realize Willie Nelson’s home base is safely in a zone of its own. The cowboy town of faux buildings – including a feed store, barn, gunsmith, church, and bathhouse – hasn’t changed much since it was built for the film Red Headed Stranger in the early 1980s. Unchanged, but deteriorated to the point that Luck today looks less like an Old West movie set and more like a real 20th century small town in Texas that is drying up and blowing away. Whatever it is, it is Willie’s World. The rest of us are just visiting.

I had come for my last sit-down with Willie Hugh Nelson. I’d been writing about him since I hit Austin in 1973, a year after he did. I’ve spent the ensuing years listening, watching, and observing him as he played shows on flatbed trucks, in drive-in movie theaters (with Paul Simon sitting in, no less), in amphitheaters, in performing arts halls, and at too many July Fourth Picnics to count. Somewhere along the way, the television appearances, movie roles, and inductions to various halls of fame added up to Willie achieving some kind of sainthood, with just enough speed-crazed hustlers, soulful used-car salesmen, and honest-to-Sam-Houston characters to keep me engaged.

Like Austin, Willie too has changed along the way. He came to the game as a songwriter. Some say that particular skill fell by the wayside decades ago – that he’s sliding by on cruise control, that he hasn’t written a memorable song in years. And yet, in the midst of all his albums of cover songs, tribute songs, collaborative affairs with high-profile buddies, television specials, and films, he’s still continued to write songs – including an antiwar protest number that briefly stirred up a hornet’s nest of controversy late last year. Not to mention enough straight-ahead country tunes to justify a full-blown album that may be his best work in ages (It Will Always Be, due October 26 on Lost Highway).


But even if he hadn’t written a line in a quarter-century and decided to follow the path of Fats Domino – who once reasoned he didn’t need to write another song because he already had more than enough hits to perform in concert -Willie would justify a visit just because he’s Willie. After all, he personifies the outlaw movement that presaged altcountry. He’s the one credited for putting Austin and Texas Music on the map. He’s a pop culture icon, bandanas, pigtails, running shoes and all, the one Texan more popular than George Bush. He’s the gold standard for Texas marijuana: If it’s Willie weed, i.e. pot fit for him, it’s top-of-the-line bud. And he’s just mysterious and mystical enough to keep everyone guessing. You never know what you’ll find when you’re in Luck.

That said, we’re both old enough to be lucky just to be alive.

He’s 71. I’m 53.We’ve both done a pretty fair job taking care of ourselves. While Waylon kept roaring until a few years before his death in 2002 at age 64, Willie quit the powder and the partying back when he was about my age. These days, drinking means water more often than whiskey. His biggest vice remains his appreciation of the sweet smoke.

I thought I’d done my last interview with him five years ago, when he drove me around Luck in his pickup truck and I caught him off guard when I asked whether there were times when he got tired of being Willie. His response -”Not really, but if I do, I go and hide” – said a lot. He’s very much a public figure who enjoys his station in life. Wouldn’t you enjoy it if everyone around you acts glad to see you and showers you with compliments? But he’s also human enough to enjoy his privacy and the opportunity to chill whenever he can.

BETWEEN releasing It Will Always Be, performing relentlessly, recording prolifically, appearing in commercials and TV specials, plotting more film roles, speaking out on behalf of family farmers, Dennis Kucinich and marijuana, and writing one of the first protest songs against the war in Iraq, Willie is living ten lives at once. The most stunning example is the new album, a full-blown, state-of-the-art polished piece of work that rings with clarity and purpose like his recordings of thirty years ago.

I walked into the saloon that’s the official Luck World Headquarters, but the room was empty and silent save for the hushed audio from CNN on the big screen at the end of the bar.

Willie wasn’t there. But Willie was everywhere.

Every square inch of space on the walls was covered with 40 years’ worth of Willie memorabilia. There were photos of sister Bobbie, Johnny Bush, and Ray Price. Two Roy Rogers kiddie guitars were propped behind the bar. The Old Whiskey River Kentucky Straight neon sign shared space in one corner with bleached cow skulls. Movie posters advertised Red Headed Stranger, Texas Guns and Barbarosa. A photo of Willie on a golf course flanked by Darrell K. Royal, the storied University of Texas football coach, Mack Brown, the current UT coach, and hometown golf star Ben Crenshaw vividly illustrated his exalted role as one of Texas’ living treasures. He is clearly not averse to the idea of being Willie.

Someone once wondered aloud how weird it must be, sitting in the middle of your own personal universe, surrounded by photos, posters, neon, and trinkets all about you. But when “you” is Willie, it doesn’t seem so strange. The building with the creaky wooden floors – recently outfitted with air conditioning – is more like his playhouse. There’s a pool table up front, a chess table over to the side, a Bose radio behind the bar, a CMT director’s chair on the floor. There’s a small room in back where Willie can conduct a guitar pull or record a picking session on a whim. There’s always old friends such as Ben Dorsey, Bill McDavid, David Zettner or Freddy Powers nearby to hang with, or to pick with.

Outside the saloon, I found Rusty and Ed, who were doing busy work around the premises. Ed said Willie was probably on the bus, where he really likes to hang when he wants to lay low. But Willie wasn’t there, either. A crew of four was busily renovating the interior (as if the tricked-out rolling mini-mansion needed an upgrade). “Willie was expecting you,” one renovator said. “But not for another four hours. You might check at the recording studio.”

Rusty led the way to the Pedernales Recording Studio in a battered RV. We hadn’t gotten down the hill and outside the main gate toward Willie’s golf course before Freddy Fletcher, the studio owner who is Bobbie Nelson’s son and Willie Nelson’s nephew, pulled alongside, rolled down the window of a black Mercedes, and said, “Hidy.”

A muddy Chevy pickup pulled behind the Mercedes. It was Freddy’s uncle, grinning from ear to ear. He was dressed for summer in a black straw western hat with a dangling lanyard and a black tank top shirt hanging loosely over his running shorts and running shoes.

We caravanned back to the bus long enough for Willie to determine maybe that wasn’t the best place to sit and visit. So we headed back to Luck.

“How’s it been going?” I asked as we walked into the saloon.

1, continue to page 2, 3, 4

Read the entire article at Joe Nick Pataski’s Blog site.

Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Fred Foster honored in Nashville (8/29/2010)

Monday, August 30th, 2010

photo credit:  George Walker IV

www.tennessean.com
by Cindy Watts

Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson and visionary record mogul Fred Foster were honored with the Leadership Music Dale Franklin Award Sunday night at a gala awards dinner heavily attended by Music Row players.

Foster was the first to sign artists, including Dolly Parton and Kristofferson, and his label, Monument Records, was home to other music greats, including Roy Orbison Tony Joe White and Billy Swan.

Swan and Parton were part of Foster’s awards presentation. Parton sang her first hit, “Dumb Blonde,” and said Foster deserved “anything to do with leadership and anything to do with music.”

The award was created in 2004 to honor music industry leaders who exemplify the highest quality of leadership by leading by example.

Foster said he was happy to be there and be considered a part of “this musical family.”

“I had the chance to work for Marriott or be in music,” Foster said from the stage. “I chose music, thank God. What moved me so much was seeing all of my old friends here tonight. Usually when I see my old friends, we’re at a funeral. This is a (lot) better than a funeral.”

Kristofferson’s friend and early publisher Bob Beckham introduced the singer-songwriter via video and lauded him for his songwriting talent, lack of ego and belief in himself.

Lyle Lovett explained that Kristofferson’s greatest gift as a songwriter might be his ability to “take what’s personal and make it universal, and take what’s universal and make it personal.”

“That’s not only hard to do but practically impossible,” Lovett said. “His humanity is what defines and illuminates his art.”

Jamey Johnson, Lorrie Morgan and Randy Travis performed in Nelson’s honor, and Brenda Lee presented his award.  

“One of my favorite sayings is, ‘Where are the real folks?’ And Willie Nelson is a rare commodity,” Lee said.

Willie Nelson, in Paris, France (6/26/2010)

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

Thanks so much to Katrina and Lane for sending pictures from Willie Nelson and Family’s show in Paris this summer.

Lane knows how I love to see Willie’s name up in lights.  Thanks, Lane!

Katrina and Lane, in Paris

Willie Nelson’s Star, Texas Country Music Hall of Fame

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

Willie Nelson was inducted into the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame in 1998.

www.carthagetexas.com/halloffame

Texas Country Music Hall of Fame…was initiated in 1998 to celebrate the contributions of Texans to the country music profession. The project highlights those individuals, living or dead, who are recognized nationally as outstanding in their field. The impressive structure encompasses 13,000 square feet of space for exhibits, a gift shop and a large banquet room. The facility can accommodate groups of 300 for lecture-type seating or more than 200 for catered dinners. With soaring ceilings, state-of-the-art lighting and sound systems and a commercial kitchen, the Hall of Fame provides unparalleled meeting space for local groups needing space for banquets and other activities.