Willie and Trigger
Willie, the red headed stranger, 85.
Prolific Cannabis use.
The Honeysuckle Rose bus.
Stem Cell therapy.
Anti fascist liberal humanist politics,
and Trigger, the most valuable guitar in the world.
A man whose wife sewed him into a sheet and beat him with a broom. Saw one son die from suicide and still goes on stage to warn people about the evils of fascists and racists in the White House.
We will miss the red headed stranger when he is gone, with only Trigger left to remind us of his passing. Whatever happens to Trigger, and I say a room in the Smithsonian dedicated to American music culture is the right place, the custodians should ensure it is a cannabis legal scenario. I will bet Trigger is infused with enough cannabis smoke to make a DEA Bell ring.
Willie is 85 this year and thanks to stem cell assistance, still taking Trigger out to rally Democrat support, last night with pro cannabis Beto in Texas. He still sounds the same. Trigger that is. And Willie.
Keith Richards said of Willie, “he is the real thing. I have to wait ten minutes before lighting my first spliff of the day Willie is straight out of bed.”
Trigger is a Martin N-20 nylon-string classical acoustic guitar.
In 1969, the Baldwin company gave Nelson an amplifier and a three-cord pickup electric guitar. During a show in Helotes, Texas, Nelson left the guitar on the floor of the stage, and it was later stepped on by a drunk idiot. Willie sent it to for repair in Nashville by Shot Jackson, who told Nelson that the damage was too great. Jackson offered him a Martin N-20 Classical guitar, and, at Nelson’s request, moved the pickup to the Martin. Nelson purchased the guitar unseen for $750 and named it after Roy Rogers’ horse “Trigger”. The next year Nelson rescued the guitar from his burning ranch.
Constant strumming with a guitar pick over the decades has worn a large sweeping hole into the guitar’s body near the sound hole—the N-20 has no pick-guard since classical guitars are meant to be played fingerstyle instead of with picks. Its soundboard has been signed by over a hundred of Nelson’s friends and associates, ranging from fellow musicians to lawyers and football coaches. The first signature on the guitar was Leon Russell’s, who asked Nelson initially to sign his guitar. When Nelson was about to sign it with a marker, Russell requested him to scratch it instead, explaining that the guitar would be more valuable in the future. Interested in the concept, Nelson requested Russell to also sign his guitar. In 1991, during his process with the IRS, Nelson was worried that Trigger could be auctioned off, stating: “When Trigger goes, I’ll quit”. He asked his daughter, Lana, to take the guitar from the studio before any IRS agent arrived there, and then deliver it to him in Maui. Nelson then concealed the guitar in his manager’s house until his debt was paid off in 1993.
Willie Nelson has married four times and fathered seven children. His first marriage was to Martha Matthews; it lasted from 1952 to 1962. The couple had three children: Lana, Susie and Willie “Billy” Hugh, Jr. Billy died by suicide in 1991. The marriage was marked by violence, with Matthews assaulting Nelson several times, including one incident when she sewed him up in a bed sheet and then beat him with a broomstick. Nelson’s next marriage was to Shirley Collie in 1963. The couple divorced in 1971, after Collie found a bill from the maternity ward of a Houston hospital charged to Nelson and Connie Koepke for the birth of Paula Carlene Nelson.Koepke and Nelson married the same year, then had another daughter, Amy Lee Nelson. Following a divorce in 1988, he married his current wife, Annie D’Angelo, in 1991. They have two sons, Lukas Autry and Jacob Micah. Nelson traces his genealogy to the American Revolutionary War, in which his ancestor John Nelson served as a major.
Nelson owns Luck, Texas, a ranch in Spicewood, Texas, and also lives in Maui, Hawaii with several celebrity neighbors, Kris Kristofferson, Woody Harrelson, and Owen Wilson.
While swimming in Hawaii in 1981, Nelson’s lung collapsed. He was taken to the Maui Memorial Hospital and his scheduled concerts were canceled. Nelson temporarily stopped smoking cigarettes each time his lungs became congested, and resumed when the congestion ended. He was then smoking between two and three packs per day. After suffering from pneumonia several times, he decided to quit either marijuana or tobacco. He chose to quit tobacco.
In 2008 he started to smoke marijuana with a carbon-free system to avoid the effects of smoke. In 2004 Nelson underwent surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, as he had damaged his wrists by continuously playing the guitar. On the recommendation of his doctor, he canceled his scheduled concerts and only wrote songs during his recovery. In 2012 he canceled a fund-raising appearance in the Denver area. He suffered from breathing problems due to high altitude and emphysema and was taken to a local hospital. His publicist Elaine Schock confirmed soon after that Nelson’s health was good and that he was heading to his next scheduled concert in Dallas, Texas. After repeated instances of pneumonia and emphysema through the years, Nelson underwent stem-cell therapy in 2015 to improve the state of his lungs.
During his childhood, Nelson grew interested in martial arts. He ordered self-defense manuals on jujitsu and judo that he saw advertised in Batman and Superman comic books. Nelson started to formally practice kung fu after he moved to Nashville, in the 1960s. During the 1980s, Nelson began training in tae kwon do and now holds a second-degree black belt in that discipline. During the 1990s, Nelson started to practice the Korean martial art GongKwon Yusul. In 2014, after twenty years in the discipline, his Grand Master Sam Um presented him with a fifth-degree black belt in a ceremony held in Austin, Texas. A 2014 Tae Kwon Do Times magazine interview revealed that Nelson had developed an unorthodox manner of training during the lengthy periods of time he was on tour. Nelson would conduct his martial arts training on his tour bus “The Honeysuckle Rose” and send videos to his supervising Master for review and critique
Asked where he considers home whilst sitting on the bus, “He just pointed to the table, to say definitively, this bus.”
Even when he is at his ranch in Spicewood, Tex., Mr. Nelson is said to often sleep on the bus, which is where he frequently engages in what he calls “adjusting his personality” — or smoking marijuana.
Willie has had many run ins with anti-cannabis law. Its no secret to any one that Willie smokes cannabis. All the time. If your a cop looking for a bust, you have a 100% easy collar.
In 2010, Willie Nelson was charged with possession of marijuana after six ounces were discovered aboard his tour bus in Texas, according to a U.S. Border Patrol spokesman.
Nelson’s tour bus pulled into a routine checkpoint in Sierra Blanca, Texas — approximately 85 miles east of El Paso — around 9 a.m. on Friday. When an officer noticed a suspicious odor coming from the bus, a search turned up the marijuana, police said.
Hudspeth County Sheriff Arvin West, an asshole of note, told the El Paso Times that Nelson, 77, claimed that the marijuana was his.
This guy, Sheriff West, is a piece of work, who has commanded billions of tax dollars for his border war on drugs and see’s fit to arrest the red headed stranger for smoking weed. Breaking news sheriff. You are in a different league. Out of your depth. No one in America will remember you as anything more than a thief of tax dollars and a racist, jailing Black kids. when you are in the heaven you believe in, those you leave behind will celebrate your passing. if your grave catches fire, I doubt anyone will show up to piss on it.
West, says on his self promoting Trump loving page
“in his three terms as sheriff, has worked with numerous divisions of the Department of Defense in training members of Special-Forces and other tactical arms of the U.S. military. He works constantly with various defense contractors in the development and testing of weaponry and technology, crucial to fighting the global war on terror and securing the southern border.
West has also been instrumental in fighting the war on drugs domestically by playing a significant role in drug and gang prevention programs all across the country. In addi-tion to time spent with local youth in 4-H, Boy Scouts and other extra-curricular activities for school aged kids.” I would like to hear from those kids about this ‘work’ West does. This fat guy ‘constantly trains special forces in the war on terror? But he has time to arrest the Willie?
According to police patrolman Bill Brooks, a sheriff from Hudspeth County was contacted and Nelson was among three people arrested at the scene. Nelson was held briefly and paid a $2,500 bond before being released. (West was then able to return to training special forces for the war on terror with his billions of tax dollars.)
Mickey Raphael, Nelson’s longtime harmonica player, spoke with Rolling Stone magazine regarding the incident and Nelson’s release, telling the magazine that “he said he feels great — he lost six ounces.”
“It’s kind of surprising, but I mean we treat him like anybody else,” West told the El Paso Times. “He could get 180 days in county jail, which if he does, I’m going to make him cook and clean. He can wear the stripy uniforms just like the other ones do.” Nice thinking Sheriff West. What about all your training of special forces? Isn’t this type of work beneath you?
I say you should be arrested. You knew this man was going to re-offend, yet you let him go. Knowing, moments after release he would commit the same offense. You knowingly aided and abetted a criminal felony. Collusion. You should charge yourself on the same basis you charged the Willie. You say the drug war is worth spending billions on. Well here you are encouraging a felon to commit crime. I wrote a letter about this at the time. But you didn’t arrest yourself. What’s the matter? When a sheriff breaks the law its nothing to see here?
At the time Nelson was traveling from California to his ranch in Austin, Texas. Because he was released, it is not expected that the arrest would affect his tour, which continues with a concert in Thackerville, Okla., tonight..
Nelson, a staunch advocate of decriminalization of marijuana, has had his share of drug-related brushes with the law.
In Louisiana in 2006, 1.5 pounds of marijuana and three ounces of hallucinogenic mushrooms were found on his bus. Nelson pleaded guilty in that case and each was sentenced to a $1,024 fine and six months probation.
Back in 1995 Nelson was also arrested in Waco, Texas, and police officers said they saw a joint in his car’s ashtray. Nelson had pulled off the road to sleep after an all night poker game. At the time he also confessed that there was small amount of marijuana on the car’s floorboard.
Nelson, a Texas native who was born in the tiny town of Abbott, has been an icon of the country music scene since the early 1970s, when he rose to prominence in the outlaw country movement of the time with albums like “Red Headed Stranger” and classic tracks like “On the Road Again” and a famous cover of Fred Rose’s “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.” “To all the girls I’ve loved before” the Albert Hammond cover, was a big hit as well.
Nelson is a co-chair of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) advisory board, and has worked for years for marijuana legalization. He has recorded and produced radio and television commercials for the cause, and in 2005 hosted the Willie Nelson & NORML Benefit Golf Tournament at his personal golf course in Spicewood, Texas
The red headed stranger, still rolling at 85. Making the right noise.
Long may you run.