Willie Nelson & Family AT 1869 Opera House in Poughkeepsie, NY (September 13, 2017)

by:  John W. Barry

For all of he does to reinforce the image of an outlaw, a weathered journeyman who has staked a claim on the frontier, there is truly something gentle, warm and soothing about country music star Willie Nelson for me.

His soft voice, his wistful regrets and the manner in which he keeps moving on, in song and in real life, have all left a big impression on me, even though I would not call myself a big fan.

All of this will continue to come into sharper focus for me as Sept. 13 draws closer. That’s the day Nelson returns to Dutchess County, for a performance at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie that is being staged by the Bardavon 1869 Opera House.

I saw Nelson perform at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in 2002 and was taken with his ability to rile up a room, then calm it down and maintain a firm but relaxed hold on all of those in attendance.

Nelson performed at Dutchess Stadium in Fishkill in 2004, on a bill that also featured Bob Dylan. I can clearly remember couples dancing in the outfield, as a country fair atmosphere consumed the home of the minor league baseball Hudson Valley Renegades.

Will I be attending the Willie Nelson concert at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center on Sept. 13? You know I will. Visit www.bardavon.org, www.ticketmaster.com and www.midhudsonciviccenter.org for information.

ALSO: O+ Poughkeepsie is quickly approaching.

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