Thanks to Willie Nelson fan, Phillip, for sharing his photo of his son, who is going to grow up listening to some great music.
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“My brother and I went to the show last night in Des Moines and it was amazing (as usual). Lukas, Amy, Micah, and Paula were all there as well which made it so special. This was my first time seeing Lukas and Willie play together and it was so nice. You can see how proud Willie is of all his children.” — Rawley Butler [Thanks, Rawley! - LL]
I got to meet Paul and Kevin before the show which was awesome. They are such great people! After the show I got a picture of me giving Willie a hug and my brother shaking Willie’s hand. It was Zane’s (my brother) first Willie show and he thought it was one of the best concerts he has ever seen (he was especially shocked that he got to shake Willie’s hand and take a picture).
Molly made this collage for Willie Nelson, and would love to meet him and give it to him in Des Moines, on Tuesday.
If this column were a song I’d call it “The Ballad of Molly and Willie.”
Consider it a Mother’s Day meditation on Molly Bierma, 75, a mother figure at large to a diverse circle of friends from her serene, happy sanctuary of a home on the south side of Des Moines. She greets everybody with an eager smile and long mane of silvery gray hair — and a deck of 78 tarot cards.
More later on the tarot cards.
First, Mother’s Day.
Today arrives to the tune of a wistful Willie Nelson soundtrack for Bierma. The legendary and probably most humanitarian of country singers has been a consistent thread throughout Bierma’s life. She’ll be in the audience again Tuesday night when Willie, still on the road at 80, plays the Civic Center of Greater Des Moines.
The only time Bierma remembers seeing her late mother cry in the home they shared — a house hand-hewn in 1906 by Bierma’s Swedish immigrant grandfather — was in the middle of a Willie song that was part of a 1983 TV special on HBO.
Bierma’s father had recently died. Her mom, a stoic Swede named Thelma Wyckoff, didn’t let herself break down at his funeral. But she wept as Willie sang “Changing Skies.”
There are clouds in the sky
Clouds of fear and despair
But love like ours never dies
Changing skies, changing skies
Gentle tears trickled down Wyckoff’s cheeks.
Bierma has analyzed Willie’s astrological chart for years and says that it highlights his duty, responsibility, obligation. He’s an “Aquarian ascendant,” part of that “brotherhood of man thing”; no wonder he unifies the long-haired hippies, biker guys and traditional farmers.
“I just admire that energy,” she said of Willie. “And not feeling sorry for himself. And taking responsibility. And just the continuance of being 80 and doing what he does.”
Bierma’s latest obsession has been to create 2-foot-by-18-inch collages on canvas. She’s an artist by talent and trade and worked for years on commercial jobs where she crafted direct mail ads and restaurant menus. She scours her daily Register with a pair of scissors for words and images to add to her artwork.
Her latest collage is dedicated to Willie and seems to touch on nearly every facet of his career. She can give it to him should they meet Tuesday.
The sole item on Bierma’s bucket list these days is meeting Willie.
Read entire article here.
On Saturday, before Willie Nelson’s birthday party/ West, Texas Fundaiser at the Back Yard, we put on our party hats and took our Willie Nelson birthday celebration on the road, with a Segway tour in downtown Austin.
Our signs spelled out, “Willie, here we come to celebrate your birthday,” but words got misspelled. I don’t know about Janis and her sign, but I meant to write celebrate, but instead wrote celibate, then tried to fix it with a little R that you couldn’t read.
At one point, Janis and Mary Jane were riding together, and when I pointed out the juxtaposition to the girls, Mary Jane said, “It sounds like a Catholic School Girl Party.”
Thanks to Jim Eckenrode for his photos from our traveling birthday party.
Willie Nelson fan Esther, at Willie Nelson’s Birthday Party/ West Fire Fighter Fundraiser last Sunday, holding one of the beach balls that Beanie (a/k/a Janine) from Minnesota sent out to fans to share at the party.
I was up front and didn’t see the balls floating around, but I heard they looked cool! Hope a picture will show up. Thanks, Beanie.
You didn’t think I was done with celebrating Willie Nelson’s birthday, did you? He must be so tired of it by now, all that attention on, what to him, is just another day, he says. But I hope he knows how much he is loved. That’s what it’s about, an excuse for the whole world to tell Willie Nelson that we love him and that we are so glad he was born. Not just this world, either, I am sure they are rocking out on other planets, celebrating one of the few truly great human beings on planet earth.
Bunny said we needed a banner for the birthday party, and Janis made it happen with this 30 foot banner that we showed to the crowd before the concert, then when the show started, at one point, we raised the banner in front of Willie.
Willie Nelson fans Dallas Wayne, Janis, Cherie, Linda, Kelly, Liz, and Jamie gather in front of the Willie Nelson statue in Austin to celebrate Willie Nelson’s birthday.