Willie Nelson does what he wants. He sings how and what he wants; he tours when and where he wants; he smokes weed and does it unapologetically. And when he grows weary of repeated reports of his passing, he writes a damn song about it.
On April 29 we toast Willie’s 84th birthday and we also celebrate the release of his newest album, “God’s Problem Child.” And from that new 13-song collection, the braided, bearded country icon shared a new video on his Facebook page—“Still Not Dead.”
Tackling the topic of his own often rumored death, Willie dons the “Smoke Weed Everyday” Christmas sweater he received as a gift from rapper Snoop Dogg for the hilarious video. With tongue-in-cheek lyrics like: “I woke up still not dead again today, the internet said I had passed away, but if I died I wasn’t dead to stay, I woke up still not dead again today,” the legend pokes fun at himself…and his habits…but also includes lots of performance footage that shows why he remains a country superstar.
If you aren’t on the Willie Nelson train, well, why? The Abbott, Texas native may be popularly know for his open support of marijuana use, including starting his own brand of marijuana, Willie’s Reserve, but he’s also an advocate for America’s farmers serving as a board member for Farm Aid. He’s a partner in a bio-diesel plant creating environmentally and economically efficient fuel and an advocate for humane treatment of horses and campaigns against their unethical slaughter.
And there’s always the music. Besides being the pen behind the Patsy Cline classic, “Crazy,” Willie also wrote his own award-winning hits, including the karaoke classic “On the Road Again.” And his recordings of songs like “Blue Eyes Crying In the Rain,” “Whiskey River,” “Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground,” “Mama’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” with Waylon Jennings, “To All the Girls I Loved Before” with Julio Iglesias and “Pancho and Lefty” with longtime pal Merle Haggard are nothing short of iconic.
So, on Willie Nelson’s birthday, you can follow his example and the advice dispensed by his opening act Kacey Musgraves: “Roll up a joint, or don’t, and follow your arrow wherever it points.”
Long may Willie wave.