Archive for the ‘Good causes’ Category
article and photos by Lindsey Rhoades
Though his touring life as one of country music’s most celebrated icons has taken him all over the world, Willie Nelson’s heart is still in Texas. With his birth state’s flag draped large behind him and The Family Band he’s toured with since the Seventies, Nelson took the Celebrate Brooklyn! stage just as the sun set over Prospect Park. His legendary locks have long since faded to gray, but Nelson will always be known as the Red-Headed Stranger, a travelin’ man with a million stories to tell and a way of telling them through songs that have captivated audiences all over the world.
At 82 years of age, his voice isn’t what it used to be; he doesn’t sing the way he does on those old recordings so much as he speaks his lyrics more like an afterthought, asking the audience for help with a wave of his arm or by holding his hand to his ear. Beginning his set nonchalantly with “Whiskey River” from his 1973 breakout albumShotgun Willie, Nelson quickly asserted himself as a singer-songwriter first and foremost. Whatever weird cultural hero he’s become as an outspoken proponent of marijuana legalization and self-confessed stoner, the simple truth of his life’s work came through in hits like “Good Hearted Woman,” “Mammas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” and “On The Road Again.” He wasted no time in playing these early on in the set, as if to remind all the city slickers on the lawn that no matter what they’d heard about Willie, he remains a simple man with a beat-up guitar, a true performer at heart.
Part of the reason Nelson’s persona is so enduring is because the earmarks of it have gone largely unchanged in the last four and a half decades since he shunned popular country and branded himself an “outlaw,” in turn defining a sub-genre around that identity. Whether it’s the two long braids that hang down his shoulders – just last year, a pair he clipped in 1983 and gifted to Waylon Jennings to commemorate his fellow outlaw’s sobriety sold at auction for $37,000 to an undisclosed bidder – or the crocheted red, white and blue guitar strap tethering him to “Trigger,” his beloved Martin N-20, Nelson’s had a long time to get comfortable with his identity, and he wears it proudly, no matter how worn out it might seem. Trigger is the perfect example. The only thing more shocking than the state of the cherished, gashed acoustic guitar is the golden tones he somehow manages to produce with it despite its condition. On “Angel Flying Too Close To The Ground,” from 1981’s Honeysuckle Rose, the sound it made was so beautiful it was nearly heartbreaking.
While “Me And Paul” acts as straightforward autobiography, the rest of the set taken as a whole also makes a great rough sketch of Nelson’s best moments. He took ownership of songs that he penned that were made famous by others, like “Crazy” and “Funny How Time Slips Away,” written in years when he was still struggling to make it in Nashville. But he also had a way of making others’ songs his own, as with “Always On My Mind,” for which he won a Grammy in 1982. He paid tribute to the greats that came before him with “Georgia on My Mind,” and “Shoeshine Man,” among others, as well as a medley of Hank Williams classics.
Perhaps openers Old Crow Medicine Show said it best as they played to a bandshell that was already full of old-time country fans: Kicking off this leg of Nelson’s tour as a supporting act was, said Ketch Secor, a “Hillbilly Dream Come True.” Though it’s rare to find hillbillies in the Big Apple, Willie Nelson’s Celebrate Brooklyn! performance brought out the hillbilly in all of us, if only for one lovely evening.
by: Andy Beta
Friends of Celebrate Brooklyn Benefit
Prospect Park Bandshell
62 West Dr., Brooklyn, NY
Willie Nelson began his country music career penning hits for the likes of Patsy Cline and Ray Price, but in the 1970s, albums like “Redheaded Stranger” and “Stardust” became smash successes. Once branded an outsider and then an outlaw by Nashville, Mr. Nelson embodies the true spirit of country music, whether he’s collaborating with Snoop Dogg,Kid Rock, or Merle Haggard.
With a six-decade career and 200 plus albums, Willie Nelson is the creative genius behind the historic recordings of Crazy, Red Headed Stranger and Stardust. This iconic Texan has earned every conceivable award as a musician and amassed reputable credentials as an author, actor and activist. His latest releases include Heroes (May 2012), which showcased new songs and deep country classics and spent five weeks at #1 on the Americana Radio Chart; Let’s Face The Music And Dance (April 2013); To All The Girls…(October 2013); as well as a book titled Roll Me Up And Smoke Me When I Die, which landed in the Top 10 on The New York Times‘s best-seller list. This man has done nearly everything exceptplay the Bandshell, so let’s show him a lotta love the Brooklyn way.
Adding another feather in this cap, recent members of the Grand Ole Opry Old Crow Medicine Show (OCMS) will be joining the lineup. Since their humble beginnings nearly 15 years ago busking on corners in New York, the band has gone on to tour the world; sell over 800,000 albums; become frequent guests on A Prairie Home Companion; play renowned festivals like Bonnaroo, Coachella, and the Newport Folk Festival; and most recently win a Grammy for their 2014 album Remedy. With their boundless energy and spirit, it’s always a good time when OCMS is on the stage.
BRIC is the leading presenter of free cultural programming in Brooklyn, and one of the largest in New York City. We present and incubate work by artists and media-makers who reflect the diversity that surrounds us. BRIC programs reach hundreds of thousands of people each year.
Our main venue, BRIC Arts | Media House, offers a public media center, a major contemporary art exhibition space, two performance spaces, a glass-walled TV studio, and artist work spaces.
Some of BRIC’s most acclaimed programs include the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival in Prospect Park, several path-breaking public access media initiatives, including the newly-renamed BRIC TV, and a renowned contemporary art exhibition series. BRIC also offers education and other vital programs at BRIC House and throughout Brooklyn.
In addition to making cultural programming genuinely accessible, BRIC is dedicated to providing substantial support to artists and media makers in their efforts to develop work and reach new audiences.
BRIC is unusual in both presenting exceptional cultural experiences and nurturing individual expression. This dual commitment enables us to most effectively reflect New York City’s innate cultural richness and diversity.
About Fight for Access
Congress will decide on H.R. 1635, and its senate companion bill S. 1333, a landmark bill to remove CBD (cannabidiol) and hemp from the Controlled Substances Act, where both are classified as Schedule 1 substances.
This bill will help families gain access to non-psychoactive cannabis extract that is already changing the lives of thousands of Americans who suffer from debilitating conditions. Research will also flourish. We are calling on you to ask your legislators to co-sponsor these bills and become a champion for families in need.
Help write history
Support the Charlotte’s Web Medical Access Act H.R. 1635 & Therapeutic Medical Access Act S.1333 by asking your politicians to co-sponsor these bills.
Win a piece of history
When you join the #FightForAccess, you are also entered to win a rare collectible. On May 2nd Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather went head to head in the “Fight of the Century.” Prior to the fight, both boxers signed only five gloves together. When you take action by calling, writing or sharing your story, your name will be entered into a raffle to win one of these gloves. Get a bonus entry by meeting personally with your representatives. (Limit 4 entries per person)
TAKE ACTION NOW
This is your chance to make history
But you have to take action now… we need your voice and we need as many co-sponsors as possible for this bill. Don’t let this window of opportunity close for our children and for generations to come. This is your chance to be a part of history.
This could be you! It’s not you, it’s Joe Nick Patoski, but Willie Nelson is offering a chance to meet him on his bus!
Meet with Willie Nelson on His Tour Bus at the Farm Aid 30th Anniversary Concert in Chicago on September 19, 2015. Includes a Private Backstage Tour, and 2 VIP tickets to the show.
Meet with Willie Nelson on His Tour Bus at the Farm Aid 30th Anniversary Concert with a Private Backstage Tour, 2 VIP tickets from Willie’s Personal Allotment and More!
Grab a friend and head to the 30th Anniversary of Farm Aid on September 19th to join the ranks of rock royalty to meet with Willie Nelson on his legendary tour bus. Access to his home on the road is usually reserved for Willie’s family, friends and the occasional superstar or luminary.
As Willie’s guest you will receive:
- 2 Tickets to Farm Aid 2015 from Willie Nelson’s personal allotment
- A private, escorted backstage tour of Farm Aid 2015
- A visit with Willie Nelson on his legendary tour bus at the show
- A photo on the bus with Willie
- The opportunity to have one personal item autographed
- An official Farm Aid 2015 “Artist’ laminate pass signed by Willie Nelson
This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get personal access to an American legend and get a behind the scenes glimpse into his world.
Learn all about Humus, the layer of soil essential for healthy food production which is being gradually depleted by unsustainable farming practices. Graeme Sait a lifelong human and soil health educator explains how 467 billion tons of carbon has been released from the soil into the atmosphere, and that we urgently need to return that carbon to the soil, and start replenishing the humus in order to reverse the impact.
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
Neil Young donates tickets to Lincoln, NE concert with Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real to support Bold Nebraska — July 11, 2015Tuesday, June 30th, 2015
Our hero and fellow Pipeline Fighter Neil Young is coming to Lincoln on Saturday, July 11th to perform a concert at Pinnacle Arena with the band Promise of the Real — which includes Lukas and Micah Nelson.
For anyone who attended the “Harvest the Hope” concert last fall, Promise of the Real stood out as a force. Rock legend Neil Young teaming up with the Nelson boys is a show that cannot be missed!
Neil has generously donated a batch of tickets to his July 11th concert to Bold Nebraska, which we have put on sale as a part of a fundraiser that also includes admission to our pre-concert “Politics + Pints” event with speakers, local musicians, and Special Guests.
(**Your concert tickets will be held for pick-up at Vega during the pre-concert “Politics & Pints” event**)
YOUR $80 DONATION TO BOLD NEBRASKA INCLUDES:
- 1 ticket to the Saturday July 11th Neil Young & Promise of the Real concert at Pinnacle Arena in Lincoln, NE
- Admission and a guaranteed seat at the Bold Nebraska Pre-Concert “Politics + Pints” event at Vega (2-minute walk from Pinnacle Arena)
- 1 “Harvest the Hope” concert poster (must be picked up at Vega pre-concert event)
- WHAT: Bold Nebraska “Politics + Pints” Event
- WHERE: VEGA: 350 Canopy Street #220, Lincoln, NE 68501
- WHEN: Saturday, July 11th 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
- MUSIC: The Bottle Tops and more to be announced soon
- SPEAKERS: Jane Kleeb (Bold Nebraska); Shane Davis (founder Fractivist.org); Greg Grey Cloud (Wica Agli); Art Tanderup (farmer and host of Harvest the Hope); Special Guests; more to be announced soon
(You may also RSVP to attend the “Politics & Pints” event if you’re not going to the Neil Young concert, but the only way to be guaranteed a seat is to purchase a ticket through the Bold Nebraska website.)
Looking forward to rocking out again together with Neil!
Jane Kleeb and the Bold Nebraska team
Willie Nelson has never been one to shy away from speaking his mind, no matter how controversial the subject. Now the singer is letting everyone know his stance by openly supporting the anti-discrimination group Texas Wins.
The Texas-based organization focuses their efforts on making their state a better place by “demonstrating true Texas values and protecting all Texans from discrimination,” specifically within the LGBT community. Nelson shares this belief and is looking to spread the word.
“Discrimination against the LGBT community in not what Texas is all about,” the singer and activist says. “And that’s why I’m thrilled to support Texas Wins.”
Nelson has endorsed the LGBT community for years. He even did an exclusive feature with Texas Monthly not too long ago to display his rendition of the human rights logo to include his famous braids rolled up as joints, replacing the original horizontal lines.
The 82-year-old sees the movement similar to the civil rights campaign back in the 1960s, as just another idea Americans will eventually all come around to.
“As humanity, we’ve come through so many problems from the beginning to here. I guess it finally had to come around to this,” he explains. “This is just another situation, another problem. We’ll work it out and move on… We’ll look back and say it was crazy that we ever even argued about this.”
“I never had a problem with any of it,” he continues. “I’ve known straight and gay people all my life. I can’t tell the difference. People are people where I came from. I never thought of marriage as something only for men and women. But I’d never marry a guy I didn’t like.”
December 26, 2004: A massive undersea earthquake occurs off Indonesia leading to a deadly tsunami that hits the shores of Sumatra, Thailand, Sri Lanka, India, Mayaysia, Myanmar, the Maldives and East Africa.
We have a certain tradition in the Austin music scene: when something terrible happens, we have a benefit. These benefits are a lot of fun, but they almost never make any money. In many respects they’re just a way for like-minded folks to get together and commiserate. The day after the earthquake and Tsunami hit. I watched the same horrible images over and over: children being swept away in rushing water. I wanted to do more than just write a check, and I was pretty sure others felt the same way.
The solution was obvious. But this benefit would have to actually make money. One of the perks of my job as a writer at Texas Monthly is that sometimes I get the private cell numbers of famous rock stars. So I called up Willie Nelson. “Let’s do it”, he said. With Willie driving the bus, others hopped on. Joe Ely, then Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis, then Patty Griffin. The show had to reflect all of Austin, not just men with beards and women with acoustic guitars, so I called Indie pop star Spoon. They said yes, so did Alejandro Escoveda, along with Jon Dee Graham. The show sold out in seven hours.
Ever day Willie got more and more excited about the event, and so did everyone else in town. Austinites rushed forward to offer ther help, before the show then during it. The groups we were earmarking funds for CARE, UNICEF, and the Red Cross — sent volunteers to man booths, and so did the American Friends Service Committee, the Miracle Foundation (a group helping Sri Lankan orphans). Everyone got involved because the wanted to help in ways behond just writing a check. They wanted to be part of something.
The show was absolutely magic, so was the atmosphere. In between acts, people visited the booths, talked with the volunteers and gave more money. They bought t-shirts and posters. They drank a lot of beer and liquor. At the end of the night the bartenders donated their tips and the Music Hall donated the expenses. By the time the final tallies were made, we had made more than $130,000.
Tsunami Relief was Willies’ show, but it had come together in a way that made you proud to live in Austin. Form the red-headed stranger to the volunteers selling t-shirts and posters, it was like we were all on a mission. A couple of journalists asked me the same thing that someone asked Margaret Shaw at the t-shirt table that night: “What organization are you with?” She said the same thing that I did: “There is no organization; it’s just a bunch of citizens.”
— Michael Hall
- Love Be Heard (Patty Griffin)
- Mary (Patty Griffin with Natalie Maines)
- All Just To Get to You (Joe ELy)
- Boxcars (Joe Ely)
- Everybody Loves Me (Alejandro Escovedo)
- Break This Time (Alejandro Escovedo)
- Mathematical Mind (Spoon)
- Everything Hits at Once (Spoon)
- What I deserve (Kelly Willis)
- Traveling Soldier (Natalie Maines with B. Robinson and K. Willis)
- What Would Willie Do (Bruce Robison)
- Living in the Promiseland (Willie Nelson)
- Whiskey River (Willie Nelson)
- Still is Still Moving toÂ Me (Willie Nelson)
- Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain (Willie Nelson)
- The Great Divide (Willie Nelson)
- Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys (Willie Nelson)
- Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground (Willlie Nelson)
Texas Wins is elated to announce our newest supporter—musician, song-writer, activist, poet and proud-Texan Willie Nelson has joined the fray of celebrities, business leaders, athletes and faith leaders to officially endorse our campaign.
On discrimination, the outspoken musician said, “Discrimination against the LGBT community in not what Texas is all about. And that’s why I’m thrilled to support Texas Wins.”
Willie’s endorsement is critical, and further demonstrates that a majority of Texans support common-sense non-discrimination protections that include sexual orientation and gender identity.
Texas has a proud tradition of embracing rugged individualism, freedom and equality, and that’s exactly what our campaign is all about. Willie’s statement attests to the strong Texas values that makes our state so great.
“King of the Roadies” — help support the Ben Dorcy Story Documentary — Two Weeks Left to raise funds!Tuesday, June 9th, 2015
by: Shelton Green
NEW BRAUNFELS, Texas — A 90-year-old roadie for musician Willie Nelson is now the focus of a documentary being shot by one of Nelson’s daughters and one of his grandchildren.
“King of the Roadies” is about 90-year-old Ben Dorcy, who has been with Willie since the 1960s. One of Nelson’s grandchildren, Trevor Nelson, started the documentary on Dorcy 11 years ago.
“Over the years, he was just always there.He was a fixture, so I didn’t realize how amazing he is and how he’s actually a piece of music history,” said Amy Nelson, one of Willie’s daughters and co-creator of “King of the Roadies.”
Dorcy worked as actor John Wayne’s chauffeur before he met Willie.
“Well, I knew him a long time and when he lived in Nashville, I said, ‘Hey, sometime I’d like to work with you.’ He said ‘OK,'” said Dorcy, talking about how he first started working for Nelson.
“King of the Roadies” has to raise $100,000 in two weeks. At last count, organizers were about a quarter of the way there.
To donate funds to help complete the project, visit:
search for Ben Dorcy or King of the Roadies
Give what you can — and get a prize!
Support the making of “King of the Roadies” Ben Dorcy Story — Donate to Kickstarter Campaign, get cool giftsSunday, June 7th, 2015
Amy and Trevor Nelson have been working on a documentary video about Ben Dorcy for 10 years, and are now launching a big push to get it finished. Ben just turned 90, and it would be great if Amy and Trevor could finish the documentary and Ben could enjoy watching it at the premier.
It takes money to make a movie, and A Kickstarter campaign has launched to help fund this documentary. The site is open for 30 days only to raise funds to finish the documentary, and time is running out. He site accepts donations from $10.00 — on up, and for each level you get a great gift. Visit the site and see the gifts, and give what you can to make this happen!
Visit their website for more information:
Donate to the project via Kickstarter:
https://www.kickstarter.com/ — search for Ben Dorcy or King of the Roadies
Follow on Facebook:
Meet Ben Dorcy (Part V)
HBO and The American Museum of Natural History present SAVING MY TOMORROW, a six part family series on the environment. From the children who will inherit the planet, comes a collection of songs, activism, and heartfelt tips for protecting the earth. Kids share their thoughts on subjects ranging from endangered animals and pollution to climate change. Behind the scenes at the American Museum of Natural History, scientists talk with kids about how organisms are affected by a changing earth. A mix of science, animation, and stories of plants and animals in danger, the series celebrates the natural world and is a call from kids to kids to help take care of the planet.
The SAVING MY TOMORROW series features readings, performances, and appearances by Alan Cumming, Laura Dern, Tina Fey, Lennon & Maisy, Ziggy Marley, Audra McDonald, Stephin Merritt, Elizabeth Mitchell, Jason Mraz, Liam Neeson, Willie Nelson, Karen O, Susan Sarandon, Pharrell Williams, Jeffrey Wright, Pete Seeger, They Might Be Giants, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Dan Zanes, and others.