When times get tough—when farms are being foreclosed on, when friends lose their kids, when a pandemic quarantines the whole country—Willie Nelson gives people a song. And it feels only right that, when times get tough, Texas Monthly gives people Willie. On Saturday, April 25 from 6 to 7 p.m. CT on 98.9 KUTX aired an uninterrupted hour of Willie Nelson songs and the stories behind them hosted by guest DJs John Spong, a longtime staff writer at Texas Monthly, and Willie Nelson biographer Joe Nick Patoski, who got to Austin just one year after Willie in 1973. Patoski has been writing about Willie ever since—including the nearly 600-page biography Willie Nelson: An Epic Life, published by Little, Brown.
The listening party, titled For the Love of Willie, took listeners on a unique journey into Willie’s music. Spong and Patoski delved into the backstories of some favorite Willie songs—including a few you’ve probably never heard—and introduced the audience to artistic endeavors from Willie’s past that may be less well known to fans of his music.