Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Enter to Win a Copy of Willie Nelson’s new book, “It’s a Long Story: My Life” (May release)

Monday, March 23rd, 2015


Willie Nelson’s new book will be released in May, and you can pre-order a copy now at Amazon. However, Red Music is having a contest, and you can enter to win a copy here:

Buy a copy of Willie Nelson’s new book: “It’s a Long Story: My Life” (and get new song)

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015
 memoirYou can pre-order it at Amazon now.

Willie Nelson’s next book: IT’S A LONG STORY: My Life.

In stores 5/5/15.

Pre-order your copy today to receive access to a brand new, previously unreleased Willie Nelson song!


New Book by Willie Nelson out May 5th

Thursday, March 12th, 2015


You can pre-order it at Amazon now.
by:  Chris Randolf

The new Willie Nelson autobiography, It’s a Long Story: My Life, lands on May 5th, just days after the country legend’s 82nd birthday. The new book chronicles the most-talked about aspects of Willie’s life — including his youth in Abbott, Texas, his journey in music, his many wives and his legal wrangling with the IRS.

Louis L’Amour Collection

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015








Disc One

Riding For the Brand — Fully Dramatized

Disc Two

The Black Rock Coffin Makers

Dutchman’s Flat

Disc Three

Mistakes Can Kill You

The Nester and the Piute

Disc Four

Trail to Pie Town

Big Medicine


Willie Nelson, new tour, new book, new movie

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015


by:  Mary Andrews

Not only can you find Nelson on the road this year, but he’ll also stay busy acting in an upcoming film. Plus, a new memoir on the country singer, “It’s a Long Story: My Life,” is due out May 5,

The new flick, “Waiting For the Miracle to Come,” is being filmed on Nelson’s private ranch in Luck, Texas. The film tells the story of a young woman’s quest for gold. One of the interesting characters she meets on the journey is a vaudeville performer played by Nelson. U2 frontman Bono is writing an original song for the movie, which Nelson will perform, according to Country Weekly.

New stops added to the routing include Brooklyn; Columbia, Md.; Boston and Gilford, N.H. Check out the schedule below.

Feb. 27 – Atlanta, Ga., The Tabernacle
Feb. 28 – Cherokee, N.C., Harrah’s Cherokee Event Center
March 1 – Savannah, Ga., Johnny Mercer Theatre
March 3 – Nashville, Tenn., Ryman Auditorium
March 4 – Nashville, Tenn., Ryman Auditorium
March 6 – Biloxi, Miss., IP Casino, Resort & Spa
March 7 – Biloxi, Miss., IP Casino, Resort & Spa
March 8 – Birmingham, Ala., Iron City
March 14 – Austin, Texas, The Expo Center (Rodeo Austin)
March 26 – New Braunfels, Texas, Whitewater Amphitheatre
March 27 – New Braunfels, Texas, Whitewater Amphitheatre
March 28 – New Braunfels, Texas, Whitewater Amphitheatre
March 30 – Columbia, Mo., Missouri Theatre
March 31 – Springfield, Mo., Shrine Mosque
April 2 – Saint Charles, Mo., J. Scheidegger Center For The Arts
April 3 – Newkirk, Okla., First Council Casino
April 4 – Thackerville, Okla., WinStar World Casino & Resort / Global Event Center
May 18 – Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Paramount Theatre
May 20 – Kalamazoo, Mich., James W. Miller Auditorium
May 22 – Hammond, Ind., The Venue At Horseshoe Casino
June 17 – Missoula, Mont., Ogren Park at Allegiance Field
June 19 – Nampa, Idaho, Ford Idaho Center
June 20 – Salt Lake City, Utah, Usana Amphitheatre
June 25 – Bend, Ore., Les Schwab Amphitheater
July 18 – Los Angeles, Calif., Greek Theatre
July 19 – Costa Mesa, Calif., Pacific Amphitheatre (OC Fair)
July 21 – Paso Robles, Calif., Vina Robles Amphitheatre
July 22 – Santa Barbara, Calif., Santa Barbara Bowl
July 23 – Berkeley, Calif., Greek Theatre
Aug. 12 – Brooklyn, N.Y., Prospect Park Bandshell
Aug. 14 – Nelson, Ohio, Nelson Ledges Quarry Park
Aug. 15 – Moosic, Pa., Pavilion At Montage Mountain (The Peach Music Festival)
Aug. 16 – Atlantic City, N.J., Borgata Hotel, Casino & Spa / Event Ctr.
Aug. 19 – Columbia, Md., Merriweather Post Pavilion
Aug. 21 – Boston, Mass., Blue Hills Bank Pavilion
Aug. 23 – Gilford, N.H., Meadowbrook

Merle Haggard appears March 26-28 and April 4. Alison Krauss + Union Station feat. Jerry Douglas plays June 17 through July 23. Old Crow Medicine Show joins the tour Aug. 12-14 and Aug. 16-23.

Tickets for many shows are available now. Presales for select dates are ongoing with general onsales scheduled Friday, Feb. 27.

For more information visit

New Willie Nelson Memoir out May 5, 2015

Monday, February 16th, 2015

by:  Chris Randolf

The new Willie Nelson autobiography, It’s a Long Story: My Life, lands on May 5th, just days after the country legend’s 82nd birthday. The new book chronicles the most-talked about aspects of Willie’s life — including his youth in Abbott, Texas, his journey in music, his many wives and his legal wrangling with the IRS.

WIllie Nelson Memoir, “It’s a Long Story” (May 2015)

Saturday, February 14th, 2015


Willie Nelson’s memoir, It’s a Long Story: My Life, is due out May 5 via Little, Brown and Company. The book finds Nelson and writer David Ritz telling the story of the musician’s six decades in the music industry including 100 albums, 10 Grammys, the Kennedy Center Honors and the Country Music Hall of Fame induction.

Also covered in the book is Nelson’s high-profile activism for the legalization of marijuana and hemp, the founding of a groundbreaking philanthropic organization and stories from his personal life.

David Ritz has previously collaborated with the likes of Buddy Guy for a biography, which won the ASCAP’s 2013 Timothy White award for outstanding musical biography.

“It’s a Long Story: My Life” — by Willie Nelson (publish date: May 5, 2015)

Saturday, January 24th, 2015


It’s a Long Story:  My Life
by: Willie Nelson,
with David Ritz

Publish date: May 5, 2015
Pre-order now:

This is the unvarnished, complete story of Willie Nelson’s life, told in his distinct voice and leaving no moment or experience unturned, from Texas and Nashville to Hawaii and his legendary bus.

Having recently turned 80, Nelson is ready to shine on a light on all aspects of his life, including his drive to write music, the women in his life, his collaborations, and his biggest lows and highs-from his bankruptcy to the founding of Farm Aid.

An American icon who still tours the country and headlines music festivals, Willie Nelson and his music have found their way into the hearts and minds of fans the world over, winning ten Grammys and receiving the Kennedy Center Honors. Now it’s time to hear the last word about his life-from the man himself.

It’s freezing outside, snuggle up with a good book

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014


Thanks, Becky, for sharing pictures of your book collection.

“A Winner never quits, and a quitter never wins”: The Facts of Life (and other dirty stories), by Willie Nelson

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

The Facts of Life: and Other Dirty Jokes
by Willie Nelson

“Our motto in Abbott was, and still is, “A winner never quits, and a quitter never wins.”  This was written above our black panther logo in the school gym.  I saw it every day.  It must have stuck.  I believe that you can’t lose if you don’t give up.  Even if you die, you’ll die fighting.  I remember one of the Rankin boys saying one day in a basketball game between Abbott and Byrum — someone offended him in some way — he jumped out in the middle of the gym and said, “My mama didn’t raise nothin’ but fighting kids!”  I thought, “What a nice family.”

The Abbott motto has carried me around the world several times, and helped me through a lot of interesting situations.  Like when I first came to Houston.  I hit town with my wife, Martha, and daughters, Lana, age four, and Susie, two.  I was looking for a place to stay and I needed rent money, so I began to search for a place to play.  I found a little place in Pasadena and got a job at the Esquire Ballroom, all the way across Houston, about an hour drive on the Hempstead Highway.

It was a Monday afternoon, about three o’clock.  Larry Butler and his band were rehearsing in the Esquire.  I walked in, sat at a table, and waited until Larry took a break.  I introduced myself and asked Larry if he wanted to buy any songs — ten dollars apiece.  I sang them, “I Gotta Get Drunk” and “Family Bible.”  He said, “Those songs are worth more than ten dollars, but I’ll loan you the money to pay your rent, and I’ll give you a job in my band.”  Thanks, Larry Butler.

One night, Larry was left in charge of the club while the owner Raymond Prosky, went somewhere.  Everything was fine until some drunk started giving the waitress trouble.  Larry came off the bandstand to straighten things out.  Naturally I had to help.  When the dust cleared, Larry had his teeth knocked out and I had two broken ribs.  Thanks, Larry, we’re even.  Just joking.  I owe you a lot more than that.”

Willie Nelson, ‘The Face of Texas’ @ Books in the Basin

Saturday, October 11th, 2014


From: Jewel
Date: October 10, 2014
To: Willie Nelson
Subject: Books In The Basin

Joaquin and I are here in Midland at an author’s conference.
Joaquin is giving a speech to the authors.
Barnes and Noble has set up a booth for author’s to autograph their books.
Thought you’d enjoy the layout of these books.
Makes me smile.
Hope all’s well on your end.

Jewel and Joaquin

In Bookstores now!

And also



No Texas Ranger memoir has captured the public’s imagination like Joaquin Jackson’s One Ranger. Readers thrilled to Jackson’s stories of catching criminals and keeping the peace across a wide swath of the Texas-Mexico border—and clamored for more. Now in One Ranger Returns, Jackson reopens his case files to tell more unforgettable stories, while also giving readers a deeply personal view of what being a Texas Ranger has meant to him and his family

Danny Clinch: “Still Moving” (new photography book)

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

photo: Danny Clinch

On the first time he met Willie Nelson: “It was through [producer] Daniel Lanois. I just happened to be outside when Willie and Emmylou were together for a show, I asked to take a picture, and that was it.” — Danny Clinch

by: Andy Langer

Danny Clinch is in the trust business. Take two accomplished photographers, give ‘em the same equipment, access, and time, and the one who’s established the trust of his subject wins every time. Clinch’s reputation, his X factor, is rooted in a calm temperament, the self-awareness to know it’s about them, not him, and an innate ability to read non-verbal cues. As Springsteen suggests, shooting with Clinch isn’t so much a ballet, but a loose, free-flowing conversation — a collaboration. And if you’re Springsteen — or Eddie Vedder, Dave Grohl, or Neil Young — at this point, you’re only collaborating with people you trust, people who themselves have something to say. And for folks who don’t love the process, Danny Clinch shoots have a habit of not feeling at all like shoots. He’s notoriously spontaneous. He’ll say, “This’ll work.” Or maybe just, “Let’s go see what’s over there?” Watching him work over the years, I’ve seen it happen again and again: Clinch will get what he needs and the response will be “Man, that didn’t feel like a photo shoot. What a great hang. We’re done already?”


Danny Clinch’s best images, collected in the new 296-page coffee-table retrospective Danny Clinch: Still Moving (Abrams Books, out September 23), represent the work of a real documentarian. He has a way of putting himself, and by extension us, in the right place at the right time. Still Moving very effectively tells the story of modern music history. But from Willie Nelson to Tupac, Tony Bennett to Beyonce, his best photos don’t just tell a story, but also tell you something you didn’t know about the subject. Mostly the way they look when they’re not “performing,” when they’re relaxed a little, guard at half-mast, or sometimes, all the way down. “Soul” is an overused word, but damned if that’s not what Danny Clinch has made a name documenting. And because of it, many of Danny Clinch’s pictures have become the images you associate with those musicians when you hear their names. Still Moving is full of those images. We asked Clinch to tell us the stories behind ten of them, which you can see exclusively here:


“I shot the video for ‘You Don’t Know Me.’ Willie doesn’t mind having his photo taken, he just doesn’t like doing photo shoots. If you’re around with a camera, he doesn’t really have a problem with it. But if he has to stand and pose, he doesn’t love that process. It’s why I suspect I get to photograph him so often. They know I’ll hang around and get it without annoying him. At the shoot, we were on the bus and Willie needed to fix his braids a little. I looked down the corridor of the bus, the hallway, to the back of the bus and saw him sitting in his bedroom fixing his braids. I just slid down there really quickly, got the shot, and backed off. If you look closely, you can see Trigger, his guitar, in the corner. And of course, his reflection. And in the back, there’s this leather kind of doctor’s bag that says Spirit on it. It’s great when you look at a photograph and see a little story. To me, this one does that.” — Danny Clinch

See rest of Esquire article, and more pictures and stories about Bruce Springsteen, Tim and Faith McGraw, Black Keys, Grace Potter, and more:

“Willie Nelson is an inspiration to us all” — Joe Nick Patoski

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Willie Nelson: An Epic Life
by Joe Nick Patoski

He’s just celebrated his 75th birthday: Wanna bet that country music icon Willie Nelson is in better shape than you?

He’s an avid jogger, a serial golfer and has a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. He’s still on the road performing more than 100 dates annually, and in the studio so often he averages two albums a year at a time when most artists struggle to put out an album once every three years.

There’s no shortage of energy on the activism front, either: He still hosts the annual Farm Aid concert that he co-founded to help the farming community he feels the U.S. government has all but abandoned, and recently he lent his name to a biodiesel fuel brand partly due to his concern for the environment.

Those are only the somewhat recent accomplishments in a pioneering career that has seen its fair share of ups and downs. His albums may not be selling in the millions anymore, but there was a time in the mid-to-late ’70s when Willie was everywhere: the radio, the concert stage, the silver screen. He was country music’s most pervasive superstar.

And you all know the hits: “On The Road Again,” “Crazy,” “Funny How Time Slips Away,” “Night Life,” and many, many more. He’s recorded and released close to 300 albums, and if he isn’t in the Guinness record books for issuing the most duets (he’s sung with everyone from Julio Iglesias (“To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before”) and Ray Charles (“Seven Spanish Angels”) to Waylon Jennings and even Aerosmith ) he should be.

As Selena and Stevie Ray Vaughan biographer Joe Nick Patoski so succinctly summarizes in the title of his latest work, Willie Nelson has indeed lived An Epic Life“ a life that includes four wives, eight children, a battle with the Internal Revenue Service, and the respect of the world.

For those who haven’t read Nelson’s 1988 self-penned tome Willie, An Epic Life is a good way to get caught up and perhaps even burst some of the myths and perceptions you have about this Lone State wonder.

Born in Abbott, Texas, on April 29, 1933, the son of a blacksmith and a singing teacher was actually raised by his grandparents from the age of 6 months, due to his parents’ split.

Nelson got into heavy living early: not only did he receive his first guitar and write his first lyrics when he was 6 years old, but he also smoked his first cigarette. Labour in the cotton fields followed a year later, and he got drunk for the first time on beer at the age of 9.

At 10, he joined a local polka band and received $6 for playing guitar, a catalyst for Nelson to realize his dream of making a living at music.

Now the way most of these stories go, you’d expect Nelson to be a troublemaker who spent more time in jail than on his education, but that wasn’t the case at all with Willie. He was an exceptional student, an accomplished athlete and one of the most popular kids at school.

However, his restless gypsy spirit was best suited to music, although it took him quite a while to achieve that goal, toiling as a D.J. and a salesman to make ends meet and support his family. Nelson was also a prolific songwriter, and when times were especially lean, he thought nothing selling future hits like “Night Life” which included the potentially lucrative publishing rights – for cash.

In fact, his future classics “Crazy,” “Night Life” and “Funny How Time Slips Away” were offered to a bandleader for $10 apiece, but Larry Butler refused and just lent Nelson what he needed. “Night Life” eventually landed with another party for $100.

Nelson tried to sell the song “Hello Walls” to Faron Young for $500 when he reached Nashville in 1960, but Young also did Nelson the favour of lending him the money rather than take the publishing rights. When “Hello Walls” hit No. 1, Nelson received his first royalty cheque for $14,000.

Willie was on his way, although it would take awhile for him to establish himself as a major country artist. In the 1970s, he recorded the bare-bones Red Headed Stranger and later married pop and country together for the standards album Stardust. But where Nelson really broke out was through an RCA Record compilation album called Wanted: The Outlaws, on which he was paired with Waylon Jennings, Jessi Colter and Tompall Glaser.

The album sold more than one million copies and began a phenomenon, and Willie fever exploded. In 1976 alone, seven Willie Nelson albums dominated the charts, a trend that was to last well into the ’80s, spurred on by the Urban Cowboy movement.

With his rickety nasal voice, unique style of phrasing and a tempo-challenged guitar technique that felt somewhere between jazz and country, Nelson has been an unlikely influence on today’s generation of Americana and roots-driven country talent.

He wasn’t perfect – he had battles with the bottle and has been a womanizer – but the Country Music Hall Of Fame legend has shown five consistent qualities throughout his career: confidence, composure, productivity, persistence, and modesty.

Still going healthy and strong midway through his eighth decade, Willie Nelson has done it his way and is an inspiration to us all.

Willie Nelson, “The Face of Texas”, by Michael O’Brien

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014


A book blog with Maggie Galehouse

“The Face of Texas,” coming Sept. 30 the University of Texas Press, is so much more than one face.

It’s 75 faces. Of wrestlers and beauty queens, artists and presidents, golfers and filmmakers, teachers and kids, the celebrated and the ordinary.

All from – or deeply associated with – Texas.

Michael O’Brien’s color and black-and-white portraits represent 32 years of work – assignments from Texas Monthly and other publications, as well as images he discovered on his own. Each is accompanied by a short profile of the subject, written by O’Brien’s wife, Elizabeth.

It’s an eclectic group: Kinky Friedman to Lady Bird Johnson to Troy Aikman to ZZ Top.

“The Face of Texas” was first published in 2003. The second edition, with 17 new and 16 updated images, will be released in hardcover and paperback later this month.

Michael O’Brien spoke to the Chronicle from his Austin home.

Q: I have to ask: Are you from Texas?

A: I grew up in Tennessee and then I worked in Miami and New York. But I fell in love with Texas. I came here in the early ’80s to work for Life magazine. … In 1989 I got an assignment to photograph Austin for National Geographic. I came to Austin several times, taking portraits. Then I met D.J. Stout, who was the art director at Texas Monthly. In 1993 I moved to Austin with my family. My wife and I raised three children here. It’s what I consider home.

Q: Is there something special about Texas or Texans that you try to capture in your photographs?

A: It’s the humanity and the warmth. The people of Texas have hearts as big as the sky. When I came to Texas I connected with the people and the openness of the land. There’s not a rigidness and formality that I would see in other places. … And in the mid ’80s, I got an assignment from Life magazine to take pictures of Willie Nelson while he was making the film “Red Headed Stranger” on his ranch out in Spicewood. I don’t think I have met a nicer and kinder human being. That’s another reason I fell in love with Texas.

Q: Willie Nelson’s face is on the cover of both editions of the book. There must be something special about it.

A: Willie Nelson has such an amazing face it’s hard for a photographer to go wrong. His profile is beautiful. The sloping forehead. I think he has some Indian blood in his heritage. The character and humanity is evident.

Read the rest of the interview at

Read article there.

“The Right Words at the Right Time”, Marlo Thomas and Friends

Monday, September 1st, 2014


“If I had to break it down, I’d say about 99 percent of the people in my life were telling me I wasn’t going to make it.  All that adversity and lack of faith ended up just strengthening my own convictions.  All that negativity really helped me in the end, because there’s no better inspiration for doing something than having somebody say that you can’t do it.”

Willie Nelson
The Right Words at the Right Time, Marlo Thomas and Friends