Country music legend Willie Nelson was to unveil an 8-foot statue of himself in downtown Austin, Texas, on Friday, which happens to be a national day of protest for the legalization of marijuana. Nelson is a 10-time Grammy Award-winning musician who has sold more than 40 million copies of 105 albums in a career built on not conforming to country music norms. Nelson fused country music with jazz and rock in the early 1970s to create the “outlaw country” movement in Austin and helped give the city a reputation as a music city. His first major hit came when Patsy Cline recorded his song “Crazy” in 1961. … Ronnie Wood, the veteran Rolling Stones guitarist, who just last weekend was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the British rock band Faces, will be playing at Golden Nugget Atlantic City, N.J., on Saturday. The Nugget show is his first solo gig in the U.S. Wood first appeared on the rock-music radar as Jeff Beck’s bassist on the 1968 album “Beck-Ola” (which featured vocals by Wood’s future Faces teammate Rod Stewart). He mentioned in an interview the Faces’ signature song “Stay With Me,” a couple of Stones numbers — “Black Limousine” and “Pretty Beat Up” — and a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Seven Days” from his 1979 LP, “Gimme Some Neck.” He has assembled an impressive backing unit that includes drummer Steve Jordan (Richards’ X-pensive Winos, “Saturday Night Live” studio band); bassist Willie Weeks (David Bowie, George Harrison, Billy Joel); pianist Chuck Leavell (Allman Brothers Band, Stones) and singer Bernard Fowler (Herbie Hancock, Stones). Keith Richards is not expected. “If he was at home [in Connecticut], he’d be in my band,” said Wood. “But he’s down in the islands.”
Names in the news, April 21
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