All news right now is related to the coronavirus. These days, conversations with friends tend to start with something like, “How are you holding up?” instead of “What are you up to?” Everybody knows what everybody is up to; they’re staying home as much as possible. The only questions any Texan really needs an answer to are the basics: “How can I keep my family safe?” “How long should I be preparing to self-quarantine?” “How can I be a good neighbor right now?” and, of course, “Is Willie Nelson okay?”
We can report that the answer to the third question is “He’s doing all right.” The 86-year-old Willie is safe and healthy, maintaining a healthy social distance along with his family out on his ranch in Luck, Texas. Here’s a photo of him with his son Lukas, hanging out and playing chess, taken yesterday.
This wasn’t Willie’s original plan for how his week would go, of course—he was supposed to be headlining the Luck Reunion mini-festival out in Spicewood, which happens every year during SXSW. Instead, he’ll be leading a livecast this evening to raise money for folks who are out of work because of [waves hands] all of this.
While the details on his set are sparse, it’s expected that he’ll be playing from Luck Ranch, while other artists—including his sons Lukas & Micah Nelson, Paul Simon & Edie Brickell, Nathaniel Rateliff, Jewel, and Margo Price & Jeremy Ivey—will be performing from their living rooms, bedrooms, home studios, and/or Austin’s Arlyn Studios, which folks at Luck say is being coordinated to allow for safe social distancing even as performers use the space.
So if you were worried about Willie, don’t be. Seems like he’s doing well right now, staying healthy, surrounded by loved ones, ready to play music, and—it’s safe to assume—he just can’t wait to get on the road again. The live cast starts at 6 tonight, and you can tune in on their site, on Twitch, or on Facebook Live.