An array of well-known figures, including Neil Young, Snoop Dogg, and The Chicks, joined Willie Nelson to celebrate his 90th birthday in the first of two shows at Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles. Billy Strings was the first to perform, playing “Whiskey River” and “Stay a Little Longer,” while other artists such as Bob Weir, Norah Jones, Beck, and Tyler Childers also paid tribute to Nelson by covering songs from his iconic 1975 album “Red Headed Stranger.” Fan-captured footage of the event is available to watch online.
The concert included classic Nelson hits as well as covers from artists like Tom Jones, Leon Bridges, Edie Brickell, and Ziggy Marley. Kris Kristofferson and Rosanne Cash, former members of the supergroup The Highwaymen, also performed a duet. Neil Young reunited with Stephen Stills to perform Buffalo Springfield hits and later invited Nelson on stage to play “Are There Any More Real Cowboys?” and “Pancho and Lefty” with guest George Strait.
On the first night of “Willie Nelson 90,” a star-studded celebration of the country legend’s 90th birthday, Snoop Dogg joined Nelson on stage to perform their duet “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die.” In his classic style, Nelson joked with the crowd, thanking the artists who joined him “to celebrate whatever it is we’re celebrating” before leading the group in a rendition of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken?” The celebration featured a rotating lineup of emcees, including Owen Wilson, Helen Mirren, Ethan Hawke, and Jennifer Garner, as well as a house band led by Don Was and featuring Nelson’s sons, Lukas and Micah. Night two of the celebration featured performances from Dave Matthews, Kacey Musgraves, Sheryl Crow, Emmylou Harris, and more. Despite nearing his seventh decade, Nelson is showing no signs of slowing down and is set to embark on the Outlaw Music Festival Tour this summer.