Here’s a look at the life of Grammy Award-winning musician Willie Nelson.
Birth date: April 30, 1933
Birth place: Abbott, Texas
Birth name: Willie Hugh Nelson
Father: Ira Nelson
Mother: Myrle (Greenhaw) Harvey
Marriages: Ann Marie D’Angelo (1991-present); Connie Koepke (1971-1988, divorced); Shirley Collie (1963-1971, divorced); Martha Matthews (1952-1962, divorced)
Children: with Ann Marie D’Angelo: Micah and Lukas; with Connie Koepke: Amy and Paula; with Martha Matthews: Billy (died in 1991), Susie, Lana; with Mary Haney: Renee
Education: Attended Baylor University, 1954
Military: US Air Force, 1950, medical discharge
Raised by his grandparents.
Sold encyclopedias door-to-door and taught Sunday school.
Has a fifth-degree black belt in GongKwon YuSul.
Nominated for 52 Grammy Awards and won ten. He has also been awarded the Lifetime Achievement and Legend Grammy Awards.
Nominated for one Academy Award.
Composed the song “Crazy,” which was made famous by singer Patsy Cline.
Is on the advisory board of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
1957 – Releases his first single, “No Place for Me.”
1960 – Moves to Nashville.
1962 – Releases his first album, “And Then I Wrote.”
1970 – Moves back to Texas.
1973 – Holds the first annual Willie Nelson’s Fourth of July Picnic in Texas.
1975 – Wins a Grammy for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male, for “Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain.”
1978 – Wins a Grammy, with Waylon Jennings, for Best Country Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group for “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys.”
1978 – Wins a Grammy for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male, for “Georgia On My Mind.”
1979 – Makes his acting debut, alongside Robert Redford, in the film, “The Electric Horseman.”
1980 – Wins a Grammy for Best Country Song for writing “On The Road Again.”
1980 – Stars in the film “Honeysuckle Rose.”
1982 – Wins a Grammy for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male, for “Always On My Mind.”
1982 – Stars in the film “Barbarosa.”
1985 – Releases the album “Highwayman” with Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson.
1985 – Organizes Farm Aid, a concert to benefit family farmers.
1988 – Releases his memoir, “Willie: An Autobiography.”
1990 – The IRS seizes Nelson’s property and possessions to settle a $16.7 million tax debt. He also wins the Grammy Legend Award.
1991 – Nelson releases the album, “The IRS Tapes: Who’ll Buy My Memories?” Nelson gives the profits from the album to the IRS.
1991 – Nelson’s son, Billy, commits suicide.
1993 – Inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
1994 – Is arrested for possession of marijuana. The case is later dismissed.
2000 – The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences presents Nelson with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
2002 – Wins a Grammy, with Lee Ann Womack, for Best Country Collaboration With Vocals for “Mendocino County Line.”
2002 – Releases the book, “The Facts of Life and Other Dirty Jokes.”
2006 – Releases the book, “The Tao of Willie.”
2006 – In Louisiana, Nelson is issued a citation for possession of marijuana and illegal mushrooms. Nelson receives six months’ probation and pays a fine.
2007 – Wins a Grammy, with Ray Price, for Best Country Collaboration With Vocals for “Lost Highway.”
2010 – Is charged with marijuana possession after US Border Patrol agents search his tour bus in Texas near the US-Mexico border.
2012 – Releases the book, “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die: Musings from the Road.”
2013 – Nelson donates his collection of awards and personal items to the University of Texas at Austin’s Briscoe Center.
July 9, 2015 – The Library of Congress announces Nelson as the latest recipient of the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
July 2016 – Nelson launches “Willie’s Reserve,” his own personal brand of marijuana that will be grown and sold wherever it’s legal. The brand will feature “high quality strains of marijuana,” and Nelson himself will work with “master growers” and local retailers to establish a set of “quality standards” for his special reserve.
February 12, 2017 – Wins a Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album, for “Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin.”
July 4, 2018 – Launches his own blend of CBD infused coffee called “Willie’s Remedy.”
September 29, 2018 – During a campaign rally for Beto O’Rourke’s senate run in 2018, Nelson plays a new election themed song called ‘Vote ‘Em Out.”
August 7, 2019 – After a show in Toledo, Ohio, announces via Twitter that he must cancel upcoming shows on his 2019 tour due to “a breathing problem.” He will resume the tour on September 6 in New Hampshire. This follows a 2017 show that was halted and a 2018 performance that was canceled due to health issues.
November 29, 2019 – Nelson announces he is no longer smoking marijuana and cigarettes due to ongoing health and breathing issues. Nelson is known for singing the virtues of smoking pot and even has his own line of marijuana products.
January 26, 2020 – Wins a Grammy for Best Country Solo Performance, for “Ride Me Back Home.”
April 11, 2020 – Nelson hosts “At Home with Farm Aid,” a virtual benefit concert for farms impacted by coronavirus.
April 20, 2020 – Nelson hosts a virtual variety show, “Come and Toke It”, featuring “cannabis-centric entertainment”.
June 29, 2020 – Nelson performs with Robert Earl Keen at a virtual fundraiser to support the former US vice president Joe Biden’s presidential bid.