Archive for the ‘Micah Nelson’ Category

“Paradox” the movie, with Neil Young, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Willie Nelson cameo and great original music

Saturday, May 5th, 2018

Just finally watched “Paradox”, Neil Young and Daryl Hannah’s movie, streaming live now on Netflix.   Neil, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real star in the movie, with opening narration and a cameo with Willie Nelson.   I loved it. I’m going to watch it again now. The music is so beautiful.

Willie and Neil commit a crime.

It has everything you really want in a movie;  loose plot line that keeps you thinking; Willie Nelson narrating, great music by Neil Young and Promise of the Real, handsome cowboys; Particle Kid Lukas Autry Nelson Tato Melgar Anthony Lo Corey McCormick. Willie and Neil commit a crime together, Neil rides a dog sled in the show,  message about saving seeds, lots of music, beautiful scenery, funny dialogue, poker, tipis, partial nudity, best cover of Willie Nelson’s Angel Flying Too Close to the Sun you’ll ever here, Micah playing Neil’s organ; Tato taking a bath,  double outhouse scenes.  Like I said, everything.

I don’t know how long it will be streaming, but watch it if you can, get the soundtrack. You’ll thank me later.

“Happy level up, pop”

Tuesday, May 1st, 2018

‘Happy level up, pop!” — Micah Nelson

Father and Son

Friday, April 27th, 2018

Happy Birthday, Micah Nelson

Wednesday, April 25th, 2018

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photos: Janis Tillerson

Janis Tillerson took this photo, in Luck, Texas

Micah and his big brother, at Red Rocks.

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Texas Music

November 2014

Micah Nelson: When It Comes to Willie Nelson’s Youngest Son, expect the unexpected
by Steve Uhler

Micah Nelson has been screwing with everyone’s expectations since before he was even born.

His dad originally wanted to name him Jake — a “cowboy name” — but the still-gestating prodigy had other ideas. “Apparently, when my mother was pregnant with me, she had a dream in which I came to her and said, “Hey, listen. I’m gonna be showing up soon, so I want to let you know ahead of time. My name is Micah. You can call me whatever you want, but that’s my name. Micah. OK, great — see you soon.” Then she woke up and turned to my dad and said, ‘Hey, uh… so his name is Micah, apparently.”

“That wasn’t enough convincing, however. “They settled on Jacob, Jake for short,” he continues. “But then I showed up and said my name is Micah. Only doctors and cops and people at the DMV call me Jacob.”

Anyone expecting Willie Nelson’s youngest son to reflect the spitting image of his iconic father is likely to be simultaneously disappointed and amazed. Flying in the face of preconceptions — ore -re-anything — is a lifelong motif for the 24-year-old musician. his music is as similar to his dad’s as John Cage is to Johnny Cash. Same canvas, wildly different colors. “Micah has never followed the herd in anything he odes,” says his older brother, Lukas. “To follow any formula would limit him, which he knows. He’s as unique as he is creative.”

Even as a toddler, Nelson was messing with people’s heads. “I started playing harmonica in my dad’s band when I was about three,” he recalls. “I thought I was just getting harmonica lessons. I was oblivious to the thousands of people watching. My Aunt Robyn asked me if I was nervous in front of all those people? I said, “If I don’t see them, they can’t see me.’ Eventually I got pretty decent at the harmonica, and my dad would throw me the nod to take a solo or two.”

Like his iconoclastic father, Nelson does things his own way — and he does a lot of things. In addition to being a full-time musician, both with his band, Insects vs Robots, and as a solo artist, he’s an accomplished painter, photographer, filmmaker and animator. Imagine H.R. Giger channeling John Audobon at a seance with David Lynch, and you’ll get some idea of Nelson’s vision.

As a musician, he eschews the formulaic and polished in favor of the ragged, unformed and spontaneous. As such a conduit as a creator, Nelson conjures “found sounds” into complex musical works of astonishing depth, imagery and surprising humor. An intuitive sonic forager, he finds inspiration in serendipitous places: the rhythm drip of a leaky faucet, the arthritic, groan of an old rocking chair, the distant howl of hungry coyotes in the night. “When I was in high school, every morning on Maui I’d wake up to the most psychedelic bird calls right outside my window,” he recalls. “the weirdest riffs. A human couldn’t write those melodies. I had a growing suspicion that all birds were just musical robots flying around with little tape decks built into them with old warped tapes that would loop the strangest, tweekiest sounds.”

So do inanimate objects, “I know a guy named Lewellyn with an old creaky rusty cat,” he continues. “Every time he opens his door it sings the strangest creaky melodies. I”ve ripped his car’s riffs off countless times. Sometimes I see music as this mysterious forest to be explored. Or like archeaology. You never know what treasures and artifacts you might find, but you can’t know unless you start digging.”

Nelson meticulously builds layers of tracks, weaving a tapestry of songs that are often otherworldly. Anyone expecting echoes of his dad’s distinctive voice and mainstream op sensibilities will find Nelson’s oeuvre disorienting. It’s a beguiling mash-up of traditional folk, psychedelia and world beat, peppered with guileless vocals, dissonant chordings and shifting time signatures. It’s musical Chaos Theory.

“A lot of popular music is so safe, so predictable, like it was processed in a factory,” he explains. “You can literally go in and buy it at Target next to the Tupperware. Not that there’s anything wrong with that .. except that a lot of it tends to sound like Tupperware. Some folks want ot make a pop hit that sells deodorant and plays every five minutes at Walgreens and gets them a Super Bowl halftime show. I tend to get bored with that intention. It spooks my horse.” Perhaps the closest he’s ever come to a traditional love song is “Mosquito,” his bizarre ode to the pesky insect.

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PURCHASE THE MAGAZINE AND SEE ALL THE PHOTOS HERE:

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“Trippy Troubadour” — micah nelson

Wednesday, April 11th, 2018

photo:  Janis Tillerson

www.RollingStone.com
by:  Andy Greene

Playing music with Neil Young has been like “getting a masters degree in Jedi training,” the musician says.

A little more than a dozen years ago, Willie Nelson stumbled out of the poker room at his house in Maui in a haze of marijuana smoke to find his then-14-year-old son Micah playing Mario Kart on a Nintendo 64. Micah had just returned from a school trip, and his father greeted him with a elcome home, Particle Kid!” Willie said.

“I thought it was the funniest thing, so I never forgot it,” Micah says. “Years later I asked him about it and he said, ‘I was trying to say “Welcome home, Prodigal Son,” but I was so stoned it came out as ‘Particle Kid.'”

By that point, the teenaged Micah had already started recording his own low-fi, dreamscape music – a slow tumble of guitars, far-off vocals, and washes of rhythm and noise – and when he decided to release it, he used the nom de smoke-plume that Willie had given him. The first Particle Kid collections were limited to 200 cassette tapes on the indie label Dome of Doom, and there was no sign they came from the son of Willie Nelson. “Instead of taking advantage of that I always felt that I had to work twice as hard as everyone else and live up the name, really earn it,” Micah says.

Earn it he has, though he may be working more than twice as hard as everyone else. A musical polymath who, according to Willie, “plays everything,” Micah combines an indie DIY aesthetic with a questing hippie spirit and a relentless work ethic. Over the last few months, the 27-year-old has done everything from open shows for Margo Price – one of Nashville’s sharpest and hardest rocking songwriters – to backing up Neil Young in his older brother Lukas’ band, Promise of the Real. Songs like “Gunshow Loophole Blues” from Particle Kid’s latest, Everything Is Bullshit, were inspired by the madness of Trump’s America. There’s also his adventurous rock quintet Insects vs. Robots, a series of animated short films he’s been working on, the Space Gnome deck of cards he’s designed to benefit the Bridge School (a cause Young has long supported), and an interactive album inspired by the patterns of hotel carpets he’s photographed that. “Whether I’m gardening or working on my car of making music or painting, it’s all part the same entity,” he says. “I’ve always felt like an artist who is using music as a medium.”

His role as integral member of Neil Young’s band began with an impromptu rendition of “Rockin’ in the Free World” at Farm Aid in 2014, which quickly lead to Promise of the Real backing Young on two studio albums and a series tours. Despite the nearly half-century age gap between Young and the band, they’ve become a very tight unit, and Micah and Lukas have coaxed Young to bust out rarities he hasn’t played since the 1970s, like “Alabama” and “Vampire Blues” and “L.A.”

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Micah says playing music with Young has been like “getting a masters degree in Jedi training.” Young has schooled the Nelson brothers with precepts like, “The perfect is highly overrated.” “The main thing he’s taught me about music is, ‘If you think, you’re fucked.’ You have to accept your flaws and embrace them.”

Young cast Micah, Lukas and the rest of Promise of the Real in his trippy western Paradox, directed by Young’s girlfriend Daryl Hannah and shot in the Rockies during a four day tour break, using vintage Super 8 film and Hannah’s phone. “We’re all miners in the future, mining for ancient technology like computers and phones,” says Micah. “It’s a strange, beautiful art film.” He say that Young and Hannah call Paradox “a very loud poem” — perhaps the only such poem streaming on Netflix.

Touring with Young means some nights Micah’s playing for 100,000 fans on a bill with Paul McCartney at Desert Trip, and then just a few weeks later he’s out on his own, singing to a handful of people at a dusty club. It’s a balance that Micah has learned to embrace, though in the future he hopes to gain just a little more traction with his own career. “I wish I had a roadie to help me carry shit around,” he says, then laughs. “I’d like to be able to employ a reliable sound guy and incorporate some of animation into the show. But I feel like I’ve come a long way in the past couple of years and I want to keep the momentum going. Hopefully I’ll hit a nerve with more people without sacrificing or compromising on anything.”

Willie Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Micah Nelson

Saturday, April 7th, 2018

“Paradox” Movie with Willie Nelson, Neil Young and Promise of the Real on Netflix

Saturday, March 24th, 2018


www.WashingtonPost.com
by: Monica Castillo

When Daryl Hannah, Neil Young and the son of Willie Nelson made a Netflix movie in three days

Hannah’s directorial debut, “Paradox,” was influenced by her environmental activism. On the big screen, Daryl Hannah stands out for her roles in “Splash,” “Wall Street” and the “Kill Bill” movies. But it has been more than a decade since audiences last watched the striking 5-foot-10 blonde strut across the screen in a formidable role. Perhaps that was because she rebuffed Harvey Weinstein in a harrowing encounter that likely cost her many future opportunities, as she revealed to the New Yorker in October.

Although admittedly shy, Hannah didn’t shrink away from public view entirely. While continuing to work, with bit parts in small movies, the actress became fiercely involved with environmental causes, eventually meeting Neil Young, as the two shared a long history of activism and attended the same rallies — and now share a romantic relationship. She was even arrested in the District during a sit-in protest of an oil pipeline.

Hannah didn’t stray too far away from acting, however. She eventually made her way to Netflix, first through the Wachowski sisters’ “Sense8” series in 2015 and now in her directorial debut, “Paradox,” which premiered Friday on the streaming service, and which she filmed very quickly in Colorado before a concert there by Young and the band Promise of the Real. “We had three days of downtime where we said, ‘Wait a minute: Everyone’s gotta be hanging around to adjust to the altitude, so let’s make a movie!’?”

In early March, in a hotel suite overlooking Austin’s riverside before the film’s premiere at South by Southwest, two of the actors — Micah Nelson (son of Willie Nelson) and his girlfriend, Alex Dascalu — joined Hannah to talk about “Paradox.” They recalled how the costumes and props were sourced from local vintage stores, thrift stores or Hannah’s closet. “We had no crew, no budget,” Hannah said. “We just did it ourselves.”

“The teepees are mine; I used to live in one of them,” she added. “The tent we rented, so that they [the band] could rehearse and learn a couple of Neil’s new songs.”

Hannah, who also wrote the film, created a loose musical journey that follows a pack of musicians — including Young — in steampunk and western attire, traipsing through gorgeous strips of the American West in a post-apocalyptic future. The troubadours are played by the band, while Young plays the ominous “man in the black hat.” Willie Nelson shows up later in the film for a delightful cameo at his ranch, known as “Luck, Texas.”

“When they’re walking into the tent, that’s the first time they’ve ever played that song with Neil,” Hannah said. She’s proud when she says it, knowing well that she caught something special on camera. “That was the only obligation they had, that they had to play an hour for two days.” Since the band needed to rehearse for their upcoming show, Hannah worked that into the story line of her movie.

In spirit, “Paradox” is not unlike Joss Whedon’s “Much Ado About Nothing,” for which he gathered his friends in a house in Santa Monica, Calif., and quickly made a movie. Hannah’s film, however, was not full of professional actors. Just a band and their friends. “I had to be hands-on, because there wasn’t anybody else,” Hannah said. “It was also improvisational, because we made stuff up as we went along.”

Hannah had to be resourceful. She reused her main cast again as extras, pointing to Nelson and Dascalu as examples. “When we shot the scene in Luck with Willie, these guys were the townsfolks. And then, Micah also painted the seedbank set. Everybody has to do everything.” Hannah ordered everyone to “keep hold of your props, keep track of your costume, drag your own furniture.”

The hands-on coaching proved useful. “I don’t act,” Dascalu said. “This isn’t a thing I do, but it was so easy with Daryl. I knew exactly what she wanted and not wanted me to do.”

Micah Nelson enjoyed a similar experience. “We didn’t think too much about things,” he remembered. “That was Daryl’s job. The rest of us were just kind of playing cartoon versions of ourselves.”

“It’s pretty mind-boggling to watch that movie,” he said. “It’s just Daryl with her camera yelling, ‘Okay, let’s all go over here! Okay, no, turn that around!’?”

“That was the hardest thing, watching the dailies,” Hannah said. “I’m yelling all the time. I hated that!”

Micah assured her, “That’s not an easy thing to do, to have anything other than creativity, a camera and a bunch of weirdos.”

In the same way that activism brought Hannah and Young together, the band met Young while performing at Farm Aid and other environmental protests. It was only natural that the group’s shared passions for causes made it into the movie.

“She kind of makes films like Neil makes records,” Nelson said. “We just go into the studio, and we’ll learn the song as it’s being recorded. He loves the life in it.”

Recording live without a second take means Hannah must work around a scene’s mistakes. “There’s something kind of beautiful and inspiring about follies,” she said. “It doesn’t mean they’re worthless because they’re a folly.”

Hannah picked up a number of directing tips while working with Lana Wachowski on “Sense8,” in which she plays a mother figure to the show’s main characters, a group of eight psychics.

“We had a cameraman on ‘Sense8’ who operated the steadicam and shot everything,” Hannah said. “Lana would just attach herself to him and use and move him around. That’s sort of what I ended up doing with C.K. [Adam Vollick, the film’s cinematographer] when he was shooting.”

Hannah also learned from Wachowski that calling out directions in the middle of the scene meant she could get more in-the-moment responses from the actors. “I’ve never seen a director do that before. She just tells you to do this or look that way. So, I started doing that, which caused me a lot of problems because I don’t have the technical crew that she had to clean her stuff up,” she said and laughed. Maybe next time around.

“I’d like to make a real narrative film,” Hannah said. “Doesn’t mean that I won’t continue to make guerrilla, homespun projects, which I think I’ll always do, because who likes to ask for permission?”

Hannah has seen the difficulty of trying to do her own projects in Hollywood. She said women need “financing! Backing! I mean, everything, opportunity!” She pauses. “Patriarchy is strong, it’s fighting. It’s not going down easy.”

As Dascalu added, sitting beside her, “At least someone pushed that rock and now it’s rolling.”

Trailer for “Paradox”, artsy movie with Neil Young and Willie Nelson, by Daryl Hannah

Wednesday, March 21st, 2018

 

www.uncut.co.uk

Neil Young is evidently a man on several different missions right now. As a working musician, he is in the throes of a fruitful relationship with Lukas Nelson and the Promise Of The Real. As an archivist, he is teasing out long-lost gems or potent live cuts from his capacious back catalogue. Meanwhile, his environmental activism, a recurring motif since the ’70s, has become more pronounced of late. A sci-fi novel, we learn, is also in the pipeline. Young’s latest project, meanwhile, is Paradox – a Netflix film directed by Daryl Hannah and also a soundtrack album – which goes some way towards uniting all these divergent strands of Young’s career. An eco-sci-fi-western, no less, it casts the musician and his young cohorts as cowboys prospecting for ‘old’ technology – a computer keyboard, an alarm clock, a mobile phone – which they trade every full moon with women in exchange for fresh fruit and vegetables. There are instances of levitation, bad cooking and a vintage steam train. Along the way, Willie Nelson cameos as ‘Red’, an outlaw who holds up the local Seed Bank with Young’s Man In The Black Hat. Naturally, there is also music. The film’s centrepiece is a 10-minute instrumental jam taken from “Cowgirl In The Sand”, filmed at Desert Trip, which helpfully reminds us that however divisive Young’s recent output is (Paradox included), the one thing all his fans can at the very least agree on is the awesome power of his live performances.

Paradox should come as no surprise to veteran Neil watchers. For more than four decades, Young has pursued an idiosyncratic sideline as a filmmaker, using the nom de cinema, Bernard Shakey. His directorial debut, 1974’s Journey Through The Past, was a combination of documentary and art-house experiment, and his subsequent productions have been similarly unorthodox affairs. 1982’s Human Highway, for instance, was a surreal, apocalyptic satire co-starring Devo, Russ Tamblyn and Dean Stockwell. With its semi-improvised vibe and wild, rambling plotline, Paradox definitely shares that Shakey Pictures spirit. Young’s manager, Elliot Roberts, is on hand as a grizzled old cowpoke, offering whacked-out wisdom: “Always take a look at the food you’re about to eat. It’s important to know what it is, but it’s critical to know what it was.” You’d imagine, were either man still alive, that this is the kind of role that would have perfectly suited someone like Hopper or Harry Dean Stanton.

Read more at http://www.uncut.co.uk/uncut-editors-diary/neil-youngs-paradox-film-soundtrack-album-review-103903#AoUIeHJETQqudzws.99

 

 

“Paradox” movie trailer on Netflix, with Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Micah Nelson

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

 

The film premieres at SXSW on March 15, then hits Netflix on March 23. The digital release of the soundtrack by Neil Young + Promise of the Real also arrives on March 23 via Reprise. The CD version is slated to arrive later on April 20, while the vinyl will be out April 13.

 

“Paradox”, by Daryl Hannah, with Neil Young, Promise of the Real and Willie Nelson streaming on Netflix March 23

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

www.PasteMagazine.com
by:  Scott Russell

Netflix announced today they have acquired worldwide rights to the film Paradox, written and directed by Daryl Hannah and featuring new music and performances from Neil Young + Promise of the Real, which will debut at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival, as announced in February, before launching globally on Netflix  on March 23, when it will also receive a limited theatrical release.

Netflix  describes the film as follows in a press release:

A fantasy, a loud poem and a free-spirited tale of music and love, Paradox is a one-of-a-kind personal expression. Sometime in the future—or is it the past?—a band of outlaws hide high up in the Mountains. The “Man in the Black Hat” (Neil Young), the “Particle Kid” (Micah Nelson) and “Jail Time” (Lukas Nelson) pass the hours searching for treasure while they wait for the full moon to lend its magic, bring the music and make the spirits fly. Vibrating with original music by Young + Promise of the Real, Paradox furthers the legacy of an iconic performer who has always broken the rules.

Paradox is writer-director Hannah’s feature-length debut behind the camera—she’s appeared in front of the camera many times, with iconic roles in the Kill Bill films, 1987’s Wall Street and 1984’s Splash, among others. Hannah’s 1993 short The Last Supper, which she wrote, directed and produced, won a Jury Prize at the Berlin Film Festival.

Paradox sprung up spontaneously and unexpectedly, like a peculiar dandelion, popping up between the cracks in the pavement,” said Hannah in a statement. “We were fortunate to find this brief window of opportunity to share the love for the natural world, each other and for the precious seeds of creativity and life. We are all thrilled the film will premiere at SXSW and that NETFLIX will be sharing it with the world.”

Hannah’s film stars Young, Lukas Nelson, Micah Nelson, Willie Nelson, Corey McCormick, Anthony LoGerfo, Tato Melgar, Charris Ford and Dulcie Clarkson Ford. Paradox is produced by Bernard Shakey and Elliott Rabinowitz, edited by Paul Snyder and photographed by Adam CK Vollick.

Paradox (Original Music from the Film) is due out on March 23 as well, to be released on digital and vinyl via Reprise/Warner Bros. Records. The soundtrack features studio and live performances from Neil Young + Promise of the Real, as well as classic covers and music composed exclusively for the film.

Again, Paradox comes to Netflix on March 23.

Willie Nelson, Lukas Nelson & Micah Nelson concert on Maui (Jan 28, 2018)

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

ww.mauiinformationguide.com
by: Chris Norberg

 

Willie Nelson, Lukas Nelson and Micah Nelson performed at a sold out show, the first show put on by the Maui Country Club on January 28th, with Lukas’ band Promise of the Real. The concert under the stars on the Makai Lawn was for Country Club members and their guests.

Lukas and Micah were joined periodically by their father for some classic tunes, a few covers and some new and old music from his kids. The night was filled with legendary music, fun dancing, delicious food, and strong cocktails. Apart from watching POTR rock the house with such talented musicians, the family dynamic was heart-warming.

Read story, see more photos here.  

Willie Nelson, Micah Nelson, Lukas Nelson @LuckReunion

Sunday, February 4th, 2018

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Thanks Janis from Texas, for more photos from Luck, Texas. Fantastic, as always, Janis!

Willie Nelson & sons featured in Neil Young, Darrel Hannah western movie at sxsw, “Paradox”

Thursday, February 1st, 2018


Photo by Larry W. Smith/Epa/REX/Shutterstock [/caption]

www.rollingstone.com
by:  Andy Greene

Neil Young has kept a pretty low profile over the past year, but it turns out that at least for some of that time he was working on a western movie, Paradox, that will premiere at South By Southwest in March. The film was directed by Daryl Hannah. Young stars alongside Willie Nelson, Micah Nelson, Lucas Nelson and members of his backing band, Promise of the Real.

“Time is fluid in this far-fetched, whimsical western tale of music and love,” reads a brief plot description released by the filmmakers. “Somewhere in the future past, The Man In the Black Hat hides out between heists at an old stagecoach stop with Jail Time, the Particle Kid, and an odd band of outlaws. Mining the detritus of past civilizations, they wait… for the Silver Eagle, for the womenfolk, and for the full moon’s magic to give rise to the music and make the spirits fly.”

The Neil Young fan website Thrasher’s Wheat points out work on the film stretches back at least September of 2016 when Neil Young and Promise of the Real performed in Telluride, Colorado in vintage western costumes. The film will be Daryl Hannah’s first feature-length film as a director, though she did direct Young’s Somewhere In Canada webcast in Omemee, Ontario late last year and the 1993 short The Last Supper.  Young has a long history of filmmaking stretching back to 1972’s Journey Through The Past, though he rarely acts in movies that he hasn’t directed himself.

Paradox is not the only project on the horizon for Young in 2018. He’s overseeing a  slew of archival releases that include his legendary Tonight’s The Night stand at L.A.’s Roxy in 1973 and a compilation of live cuts taped on Crazy Horse’s 2012/13 Alchemy tour. He’s also pledged to return to the road in the latter half of 2018, but it is unclear if he will perform solo, with Promise of the Real or with another backing group.

Willie Nelson and Family, on the bus

Thursday, January 18th, 2018

Micah Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Willie Nelson

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

photo:  Greg Giannukos