Willie Nelson’s new album, set to be released April 27, marks Willie’s 85th birthday. The title track, which has already been released, has some extremely meaningful lyrics that summarize his life beautifully. “Go on in front if you’re in such a hurry like heaven ain’t waitin’ for you, I don’t wanna be the last man standin’ on second thought maybe I do.” Willie’s way of living throughout his whole life has been somewhat contradictory. He has always been extremely relaxed and mellow, perfectly fine to coast through life. On the other hand, he has never stayed in one place for very long, always searching for a new challenge. By the time he was 30 he had moved from Abott to Fort Worth to Houston to Dallas to Oregon to Austin to Los Angeles and to San Antonio. He has always been extremely laid back, but also restless in his life.
Willie’s upbringing also had a huge influence on his music. He was raised by his grandparents after both of his parents left, and his parents were extremely conservative methodists, so he and his sister both got their musical start in the methodist church. His grandpa died when he was 10, but not before buying him a guitar a few months before. Once his grandpa died, Willie, his sister, and his grandma had to barely scrape by picking cotton and doing whatever odd jobs they could do. When Willie was 13, he got a job in a band playing in bars, and initially when his grandma found out where he was playing, she disapproved, but after he gave her his first night’s pay, she let him keep playing. His pay was only $10 a night, but that was as much as the three of them were making per month. Willie’s christian upbringing never left him though, and influenced some of his most famous songs during his illustrious singing and songwriting career.