Archive for the ‘Kris Kristofferson’ Category

Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson

Saturday, August 29th, 2015

People Magazine
Feb. 13, 1984
by Chet Flippo

Is it true that when cowboys die, they go to Texas? Tonight is cowboy heaven for sure — as two forever young good ole boys named Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson smile and press the flesh and inch their way through phalanxes of ecstatic fans on their way to the bandstand. Out front, a couple thousand of the faithful are whooping it up and pouring down the Lone Star beer at Austin’s Opry House, a true shrine of C&W. It was here that Willie put modern Country on the map in the early ’70s when he gave up on Nashville’s establishment and drifted on down to Austin to forge an alliance between hippies and rednecks.

Hordes of both — now almost indistinguishable, what with their pierced ears and long hair and pounds of silver and gold jewelry and flowered shirts and skintight jeans (and that’s only the men) — are starting their “Willie” chant. Even though the concert footage has already been shot at the Opry House for Songwriter, the movie that Willie and Kris are filming here, Willie got cabin fever after awhile and decided he just had to do a show. Since he now owns the Opry House, along with a lot of other prime Austin real estate, it wasn’t too hard to set up. Austin can never get enough of Willie, especially since he now spends most of his time in Colorado or on the road. He is still a holy man in Texas.

Backstage, Willie, still in his “Doc Jenkins” black garb from the day’s shooting, smiles his guru smile and shakes the hands of preppies in blazers and bikers in leather and grandmothers in shawls and little children and clean-cut jocks and guys who look suspiciously like dope dealers and businessmen wearing suits and left-over ’60?s hippies and farmers and former University of Texas coach Darrell Royal. They are smiling at each other so much that, if you didn’t know better, you might think this is a mob of some kind of babbling religious freaks. But no, they’re just Willie fanatics.

Willie embraces Kristofferson, who is still wearing the black outfit of the “Blackie Buck” character in the movie. Kris and Willie are the old pros of progressive C&W and their lined faces and salt-and-pepper bears show a lot of years of being rode hard and put up wet. But, as a bystander points out, they fearlessly — and recklessly — went up against heavy odds in fighing Nashville’s establishment.

“And, bah Gahd, we won, didn’t we, Willie?” rasps Kris in his window-rattling rumble of a voice, hugging Willie amid the chaos. “Yeah, Kris, I guess we did,” Willie says quietly. Then he and his band hit the stage to plead: “Whiskey river, take my mind.”

The crowd erupts and doesn’t stop. It’s an old-fashioned hoedown with dancers and drinkers twirling and swirling thorugh hours of Willie and Kris, and Kris and Willie stripping down to black T-shirts and dripping with sweat by the time they turn Amazing Grace into a Country Mass — hundreds of europhoric worshipers jumping to their feet and pointing their fingers heavenward and singing along witha Texas sermon from Matthew, Mark, Kris and Willie. And not one fight. Remarkable for a honky-tonk.

“God, Willie’s great,” Kris says a few minutes after the show, back in his modest suite at the Ramada Inn, as he picks his way through stacks of toys for his children and calls room service to order himself some rabbit food and volcano water.

Ten years ago, when they were really living the lives of Doc and Blackie, Kris and Willie existed on shots of tequila and more shots of tequila, with the occasional night out on shots of Jack Daniel’s. They were living right out there “on the border,” as Kris sings in this movie. And they were slogging through the drugs-and-alcohol diet thought essential to capture the exquisite pain of country music.

No longer. Kris pulls off his T-shirt to reveal that he’s healthy now, rippling muscles and all that. Coherent. Sane. Everything that he is not inSongwriter. Doesn’t drink or drug anymore. Runs 10 miles a day. Plays golf with Willie. Eats right. Is writing songs again after a long drought.

“Yeah, things are going real good,” he says with a satisfied sigh from his easy chair, boots up on the table. “I got married. Wasn’t no big thing, but yeah, we got a little boy now. My wife’s named Lisa. She’s a lawyer. She was in law school at Pepperdine when I met her. We had a little boy on the seventh of October — Jesse Turner Kristofferson. ‘Jesse’ for an old football coach I had and ‘Turner’ for [band member] Turner Stephen Bruton.

“Wille’s got a great philosphy — about running, about golf, about everything. Kick it back to where you can enjoy it, you know? I’t like, if youre’ running too hard and you’re miserable, then ease off a little bit. He runs for pleasure, not to drive himself. I swear to God” — he laughts at the notion — “being around Willie is like being around Buddah. He gives off these positive attitudes. Next thing you know, you’re acting like him.”

He laughs again, shaking his head in wonderment as he pushes his room service tray aside. He turns and trains the full force of his intense, sky-blue deep-set eyes on his visitor and says seriously, “I’ll never be like him. I’ll never be able to walk directly from the golf cart to the stage. But I’ll never again put myself through the angst I used to. This film as changed my life as much as A Star is Born did. That was a real turning point because I saw that I had potential as an actor. It was enough to clean me up, to quit drinking, you know. And this move has justified my getting cleaned up. You always hope that working with friends will work, but working with Willie is a real bonus because the chemistry on the screen is so good. This has turned out to be the best experience of my life.”

“Final Attraction” — Kris Kristofferson

Friday, August 28th, 2015

Photo: Lana Nelson

When Kris Kristofferson played the Boulder Theater he dedicated this song to Willie Nelson, and told his story about being inspired to write it while standing backstage,  watching Willie Nelson perform and interact with his fans:

Final Attraction
by Kris Kristofferson

Well here you are
The final attraction
Awaiting direction
From somewhere above

Your finest performance
Approaching perfection
I know what you’re making
Is some kind of love

Somewhere in your lifetime
You were dared into feeling
So many emotions
That tear you apart

But they love you so badly
For sharing their sorrows
So pick up that guitar
Go break a heart

Come on boy, get back up there
You can do it one more time
For Hank Williams, go break a heart
And Janis Joplin, go break a heart
And John and June Carter,
And Stephen Bruton, go break a heart
And Waylon Jennings,
go break a heart
And John Lennon, go break a heart
And Roger Miller, ”
And Jimi Hendrix, ”
And Mickey Newbury, ”
And maybe one time for me
Go break a heart

Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Travis Tritt, Waylon Jennings, “The Long Kill”

Tuesday, August 18th, 2015

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Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson support Fight for Access and Realm of Caring

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

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www.theroc.us
The Realm of Caring is a 501c3 non-profit organization that has been formed to provide a better quality of life for those affected by disorders and diseases, including but not limited to, Cancer, MS, HIV/AIDS, Epilepsy, Parkinson’s, through the use of concentrated cannabinoid extracts. Each client’s progress is monitored through an Institutional Review Board (IRB) approved observational research study. Through the observational research studies, the Realm of Caring is able to educate the general public as to the positive effects of cannabinoid supplements.

www.fightforaccess.com

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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.

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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

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.

www.fightforaccess.com

 

 

Kris Kristofferson, at Willie Nelson’s 4th of July Picnic

Thursday, July 16th, 2015

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photo:  Gary Miller

Willie Nelson leads star-studded Waylon Jennings tribute in Austin (July 6, 2015)

Monday, June 29th, 2015

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The star-studded lineup of performers also includes Alison Krauss, Robert Earl Keen, Chris Stapleton, Toby Keith, Eric Church, Kacey Musgraves, Sturgill Simpson, Jamey Johnson, son Shooter Jennings, widow Jessi Colter, and Billy Joe Shaver. Producers Buddy Cannon and Don Was will serve as musical directors; the latter will lead the backing band as well.

The event is being filmed and recorded for release at a future date.

—Juli Thanki, jthanki@tennessean.com

Highwaymen Prayer Candles

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

etsy

  • Handmade item  — Made to order —   Choose from red or white candles
  • $27.00/  set of 4
  • Ships worldwide from Petaluma, California

Creepy or cool?  You be the judge.

Happy Birthday, Kris Kristofferson

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

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Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Lee Ann Womack and others perform at “Outlaw: Celebrating the Music of Waylon Jennings” (July 6, 2015)

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

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On Monday, July 6, 2015, a collection of music’s legendary outlaws and rising superstars will come together for a once-in-a-lifetime concert event at ACL Live At The The Moody Theater in Austin, TX, to honor Waylon Jennings, one of the most influential musicians of the Outlaw Country movement. The concert event will be filmed and recorded for multi-platform distribution throughout traditional and digital media.

OUTLAW: CELEBRATING THE MUSIC OF WAYLON JENNINGS will feature performances by: Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Toby Keith, Eric Church, Kacey Musgraves, Ryan Bingham, Sturgill Simpson, Jamey Johnson, Lee Ann Womack, Chris Stapleton, Shooter Jennings, Jessi Colter, and Billy Joe Shaver. Additional performers to be announced.

Grammy Award-winner Don Was serves as co-music director and will lead an all-star band backing the performers at this concert event. Legendary music producer Buddy Cannon also serves as co-music director. “Waylon Jennings was my friend, brother, and musical soul mate”, said Willie Nelson. “Playing his songs with these incredible artists, is going to be one hell of a concert event.”

Ticket purchasers will also have the chance to purchase tickets to the exclusive concert event after- party. Details to be announced shortly. 100% of the proceeds from the after- party event will be donated to the United Way and earmarked to help Central Texas residents most affected by the recent Memorial Day floods.

Waylon, Willie, Kris and the Renegades of Nashville

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

highwaymen

www.statesman.com
by:  By Joe Gross

American-Statesman Staff

Attention, people of Texas in general and Austin in particular: Michael Streissguth, author of “Outlaw: Waylon, Willie, Kris, and the Renegades of Nashville,” insists that the title is not personal.

Indeed, it absolutely makes sense.

When most folks think of outlaw country, they think of Texas. “Progressive” country, the Armadillo World Headquarters, hippies and rednecks getting together: These things are as crucial to the mythology of late 20th-century Austin as anything.

But Waylon Jennings, he of the massive voice, rugged persona and love of the guitar phaser-effect; Willie Nelson, he of “Red-Headed Stranger” and dealing with super-stardom better than most; Kris Kristofferson, he of a genuinely revolutionary way to write country songs: These guys were rebelling against Nashville, not Texas.

And Nashville was still (and is still) the world capital of country music, the center of the industry, the place where all three artists spent an awful lot of time.

“I do feel like Nashville lived in some ways in the shadows of this movement,” Streissguth says.

The Le Moyne College professor is the author of several books on country music, including two on Johnny Cash. “They had come from Texas, but they were based in Nashville, for the most part,” Streissguth says. (Willie’s Texas residency excluded.) “I wanted to tell the Nashville side of the story.”

Streissguth says the book started when he began to look into the life and times of the great Waylon Jennings.

“When ‘Crazy Heart’ with Jeff Bridges came out, it reminded me that Jennings had been dead (about seven years), and he seemed to be slipping from memory,” Streissguth says. He started getting into Waylon’s life and career, and that opened up the outlaw topic.

“Outlaw” traces the movement via the very different career paths of Jennings, Nelson and Kristofferson. All three intersected with each other’s careers, all three embodied a new way of thinking about (and writing and recording) country music.

But all three started at different points and arrived at very different places. Along with way, Streissguth folds in figures such as Billy Joe Shaver, Guy Clark, Rodney Crowell, Kinky Friedman, and, of course, Johnny Cash.

“I don’t want to say there is a specific path from Cash to outlaw,” Streissguth says. However, Cash is certainly a player, recording Kristofferson’s songs and engaging progressive singer-songwriters on his short-lived-but-increasingly legendary TV show, which featured performances from Kristofferson, Jennings and Bob Dylan.

In fact, Dylan’s recording “Blonde on Blonde” in Nashville is one of the key moments in the development of outlaw country. “There was one ‘a-ha!’ moment in writing this, and that was finding out that Kristofferson was working as a studio lackey during the ‘Blonde on Blonde’ sessions,” Streissguth says. “I don’t think you can’t discount how Dylan changed Nashville.”

Then again, Streissguth got a lot of time with Kristofferson. “He was very generous,” Streissguth says. “I didn’t talk to Willie, though I tried, and Waylon came alive for me through his drummer and confidant Richie Albright. Rodney Crowell, Guy Clark and Roseanne Cash were great as well.”

What emerges is a case for Nashville as its own incubator, a place where, for a brief period of time, this sort of songwriting flourished.

“I do think that we typecast Nashville,” Streissguth says. “There was very much a Greenwich Village-like scene in the West End,” the neighborhood that helped nurture all of the book’s heroes.

In fact, there were many aspects to Nashville in this period that Streissguth thinks have been under-reported or are becoming forgotten. An entire generation knows Kristofferson more as a character actor than a songwriter.

“It’s a cliche at this point, but Kristofferson’s songwriting changed Nashville, it really did,” Streissguth says. “And I developed a great appreciation for producers such as Fred Foster and Jack Clement. These guys were serious risk takers. They took chances on artists, and you need that in a vibrant scene. Anything that is pioneering involves money and risk.”

Streissguth notes that Clement collected these songwriters, giving them publishing deals and pushing them to think big about their careers. “He would say, ‘you’re a writer, but have you thought about performing? What about film-making?’”

Waylon, the reason for all of this research, also came under some revision.

“There was a lot of bluster surrounding him and this idea that the was rebelling for the sake of rebelling,” Streissguth says. “But you look at the nuances of his career, and he really had been beaten down by the Nashville machine. He was thinking about packing it in and becoming a session guitarist.”

And then there were Waylon’s personal habits. “Cocaine is almost a character in this book,” Streissguth says. (Speed is pretty important as well.) “I think Waylon’s suspicion of journalists and fans really harmed him in the long run. Had Waylon made himself more accessible to the world, the way Willie did, I suspect we would be talking about him in the same way as Willie.”

Ah, Willie. He really does emerge from “Outlaw” better than anyone.

“No question he becomes the quintessential outlaw figure,” Streissguth says. Kristofferson went Hollywood, Waylon flamed out, but Willie endured. “He’s remained on this even path, and he’s still such a powerful symbol of so many aspects of American culture.”

This day in Willie Nelson History: Highwayman Released (May 2, 1985)

Saturday, May 2nd, 2015

On May 2, 1985, Columbia Records released the “Highwayman” album, with Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash and Kris Kristofferson

The Highwaymen:  Four Superstars Come Together
Music City News
August 1985
by Neil Pond

I was a highwayman
Along the coach roads I did ride
A sword and pistol by my side
Many a young maid lost her baubles to my trade
Many a soldier shed his lifeblood on my blade
The master took me in the spring of ‘25
But I am still alive

I’ll always be around, and around, and around, and around.

by Jimmy Webb

Mystical and uplifting, Highwayman has become the summer’s collaborative hit for the superstar quartet of Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson.  Their new LP, also called “Highwayman,” is a a coming together of boldly distinctive stylists that prompted one reviewer to observe “if Mount Rushmore could sing, this is what it would sound like.”

At Willie’s recent 4th of July picnic event in Austin, the audience was treated to the first ever public appearance of “The Highwaymen,” as the foursome have come to be collectively called.  After an all-day rain, the quartet gathered onstage to sing three songs as the sky gradually opened and spilled luminous orange twilight throughout the dissipating clouds.  It was a grandiose bit of meterological staging — coincidence, you ask?  — that fit nicely with the cover of the album, which shows the heavens parting and the four entertainers peering through like gentle mythological gods.

But the “Highwayman” project, despite it’s majestic overtones, was not a carefully calculated attempt at clustering the individual stars into one spectacular supernova recording — although that’s pretty much how things turned out.

The album’s roots are actually in Switzerland, where Willie, Waylon and Kris were guests of Cash at the taping a Christmas TV special last year.  After performing together on the show the four returned stateside and joined forces to cut a couple of songs intended for Cash’s upcoming solo album.  One of the songs was Bob Seger’s Against the Wind, which they had all performed together on the TV special.  The other was Highwayman, a song by New York-based writer Jimmy Webb themed around reincarnation.

“We’d intended it for my solo album,” says Cash of the song.  “But the more we recorded together, the more we realized that it should be an album of the four of us.”

Once the idea for an entire quartet album was concrete, Cash decided to sideline his own album until the group project could be completed. For three nights the four singer/songwriters gathered at producer Chips Moman’s Nashville studio and bantered around songs that they felt would be appropriate for their collaboration.  They drew from material both familiar (like Cash’s own Big River and Guy Clark’s Desparados Waiting for a Train and obsure to come up with a slate of songs that somehow seemed to fit their individual and collective imagery as purveyors of things original, Old-Western, and American.

It’s the title cut, however, that is attracting the most attention.  Already a hit single and an engaging video, its haunting theme of reincarnation makes for unusual country music fare.  In the song, Willie, Kris, Waylon and Cash each sing the part of a different individual who, in the end, turns out to be various reincarnations of the same person, the highwayman of the title.

“As far as subject matter, it’s a very meaty topic,” explains Rick Blackburn, head of Nashville’s CBS Records who gave the ultimate go-ahead for “Highwayman.”  “But I think country music is ready to deal with heavier topics as opposed to the stereotypes we’ve had all along.”

Lest some listeners imply that the enterainers themselves might be espousing personal afterlife philosopy with the song, Cash responds that he, for one, holds to other beliefs.

“I don’t believe in reincarnation,” he says.  “I’m a Christian and I sang the song because I liked it.  It’s a good song.  It’s a good melody, it’s excellent lyrics written by a really great songwriter.  But so far as the philosophy and the religion, if you will, of the song… it’s not my belief.  I’m not making a statement of affirmation in belief of transmigration of souls or any such thing.”

Ego never raised it’s ugly head in “The Highwayman” project.   The recording sessions were dominated by a shared comraderie between the four entertainers, a brotherhood beyond the business at hand.

“We never had any problems,” says Waylon.  “We don’t think of each other as superstars.  There were no ego trips.  We’re a lot alike.  We’ve all had our starving days, paid our dues.  We have a lot of respect for each other.  If you don’t record with somebody you like, it ain’t gonna be no good.”

The future of The Highwaymen quartet is undecided at his point, although it’s possible that the four will be making several appearances together throughout the summer.  “We can’t decide whose band we want to use,” says Cash, referring to the equally terrific musical line-ups that back each entertainer.  The four will appear, however, as the Highwayman on the upcoming coming Country Music Association Awards show in October.

A movie project re-make of the John Ford classic Stagecoach that would star all four in leading roles has also been talked about.  “That’s a possibility,” says Cash.  Willie, Cash and Kris all have substantial movie acting experience, but Waylon’s film resume is practically bare. ”I don’t get very excited about doing movies,” explains Waylon.  “I’m a singer.”

In the meantime, Cash and Kristofferson are pegged to begin production in September on a CBS television movie called The Last Days of Jesse James. (Kris will be Jesse, Johnny will be his brother Frank.)

Individually , the four Highwaymen are currently wrapped up in their separate careers as well as the promotional hoopla surrounding their group LP.  Cash’s oslo album for Columbia is finishing production.  Willie’s “Half Nelson” LP, also for Columbia, of duets with various artists will be released soon.  Waylon’s new “Turn the Page” album on RCA is fresh in the stores this month.  Cash and Waylon have also completed a duet album for imminent release and are dicussing a possible Western movie pair-up.

Kristofferson, the only act of the four not currently affiliated with a record label, is staying very busy on the road with his Borlderlords band.  A movie called Trouble in Mind,  in which he will co-star with Keith Carradine, is scheduled for release around Christmas.

So the Highwaymen continue to ride, separately if not together.  And who knows?  There’s the prospect of another four-way album.  Cash says they’ve got almost enough material in the can from the previous sessions.

Nothing lasts forever, but it certainly seems as if these guys are planning, in some configuration, on being around, and around, and around and around…

Willie Nelson, “Who’ll Buy My Memories” (“Songwriter”)

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

You can watch the full movie at Crackle


From Crackle: Songwriter

Legends of the road: Willie, Merle, Kris (SOLD OUT)

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

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Thanks, Janis Tillerson, for sharing this picture she took of the SOLD OUT poster, from concert on April 4th.

Willie Nelson and Family, and Merle Haggard and Kris Kristofferson at WinStar World Casino (4/4/15) (Thackerville, OK) (April 2015)

Monday, April 6th, 2015

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Kevin Smith, Willie Nelson, Billy English

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Kris Kristofferson, with the Strangers

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Merle Haggard and the Strangers with Kris Kristofferson

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See more photos of Willie Nelson and Family and Merle Haggard from the concert at the Winstar FaceBook Page:
https://www.facebook.com/WinStarWorldCasino/photos_stream?ref=page_internal

Willie Nelson and Friends, after concert in Thackerville, OK (April 4, 2015)

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

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www.WillieNelson.com

Willie Nelson, Randy Travis, Kris Kristofferson, and Jamie Johnson, backstage after the concert with Merle Haggard at the Winstar Casino, in Thackerville, OK last night.