Willie Nelson still going strong at 80

Nelson still touring, wrote book about life

Author: Paul Venema, Reporter, pvenema@ksat.com
Published On: Jun 05 2012 06:22:02 PM CDT   Updated On: Jun 05 2012 10:00:54 PM CDT
Willie Nelson

Just before beginning another month-long road tour Saturday, country music icon Willie Nelson took some time to reflect on his colorful career with KSAT 12. He said he has no plans to slow down.

IMAGES: Willie Nelson's Ranch

“I haven’t seemed to have done it yet,” he said. “But I’m coming up on 80.”

Asked whether, given his age, he had made a bucket list, Nelson said, “I think my whole life was a bucket list trying to do everything I could while I was here.”

Nelson said that he thinks about his own mortality but doesn’t dwell on it.

“I’m mindful of the fact that we live, we’re going to die and – stuff happens – and we move on," he said. Reflecting on his life, he said he just finished writing a book, called Just As I Am, documenting some of what he called his phases and stages, which is the title of one of his many hit songs.

Though his shows still include many of his old hits like “Crazy,” “Night Life” and “On the Road Again,” he’s added several new songs, some that appeal to a younger crowd.

IMAGES: Willie Nelson's Ranch

“Those young kids out there, you know, they know their music and they like to listen to radio stations that I probably would not run into,” he said.

Nelson splits his time off the road between a home in Maui and his hill country ranch near Austin.

As he relaxed while driving his pick-up truck around his 700-acre ranch, checking on the 77 horses there, he said, “I don’t think of anywhere that I want to go that I haven’t been but there’s a few places that I’d like to go back to.” Topping that list, he said, is his ranch.