Houston Rodeo

5 Things to Know About Willie Nelson Before His Concert This Saturday

Spoiler: He used to sell Bibles.

By Jeanne Lyons Davis March 17, 2017

Shutterstock 299588846 kdtap3

Image: Shutterstock

Before the Texas icon croons hits like "Always On My Mind" and "On the Road Again" at NRG Stadium this Saturday, brush up on facts (some that might surprise you!) about the legendary musician.

This isn't his first rodeo. 

Since his first appearance at Rodeo Houston in 1985, this year ushers in Willie's 10th performance. While the rumor mills were turning earlier this week that the concert would be canceled due to illness, a rep confirmed that the Red Headed Stranger is ready for the Bayou City this Saturday.

He was a Bible salesman.

You read that right. Before the songwriter, actor and activist—not to mention notorious toker—was riding radio waves, according to an interview with the Ellensburg Daily Record in 1988, Nelson worked as a Bible salesman in the '50s. Preach.

He owns a golf course.

Located "just 8 songs away from Austin" in Spicewood, Willie Nelson's Cut-N-Put is the Wild West of courses, as it departs from formal golf club culture with relaxed rules (no quiet "golf claps" here) and a fun atmosphere. Since it's located on the same property as his recording studio, you might even score a tee time with Willie himself.

"On the Road Again" was penned on a barf bag. 

“I was on an aeroplane with Sydney Pollack and Jerry Schatzberg, who was the director of the movie Honeysuckle Rose,” Nelson told the London-based music magazine, Uncut, in a 2014 interview. “They were looking for songs for the movie and they started asking me if I had any ideas. I said, ‘I don’t know, what do you want the song to say?’ I think Sydney said, ‘Can it be something about being on the road?’ It just started to click in my head. I said, ‘You mean like, ‘On the road again, I can’t wait to get on the road again?’ They said, ‘That’s great. What’s the melody?’ I said, ‘I don’t know yet.’”

He named his guitar—which he's played since 1969—after Roy Rodgers' horse.

OK, diehard fans already know this tidbit, but Willie has been strumming Trigger, his Martin N-20 classic acoustic guitar, for the past six decades. (It even boasts its own Wikipedia page.) But like the 83-year old crooner, it still doesn't miss a beat. 

Don't miss Willie Nelson perform Saturday, March 18 at Rodeo Houston. 3 NRG Pkwy. 832-667-1000. rodeohouston.com

Show Comments