Ray Price, The Gourds announced for Willie Nelson's New Year's Eve concert
Willie Nelson will be ringing in the 2012 the only way he knows how: among friends with a two-night concert series on Willie Nelson Boulevard (the locale of ACL Live at the Moody Theater). The extravaganza, Willie and Friends Family New Year, was announced earlier this month with only one name on the bill: the Red Headed Stranger himself.
Nelson’s esteemed ensemble of New Year’s Friends was announced today, offering a new take on the Willie and Friends enterprise that has been around for decades. This modern version is a Texas music lovers dream lineup that includes true country legend Ray Price, Austin’s most-loved band The Gourds, and Willie Nelson’s own son, Lukas Nelson.
Texas native, Country Music Hall of Fame inductee—and friend of Willie—Ray Price will kick off the two-night event with his country crooning, likely incorporating well-known hits like “Heartaches by the Number” and his rendition of the Nelson-penned “Night Life.”
Following in his father’s footsteps, Nelson’s son, soulful rocker Lukas Nelson, is set to play after Willie graces the stage. Along with his band Promise of the Real, based out of Southern California, the young Nelson will bring a rowdier rock vibe to the stage, balanced by the bluesy notes of his signature guitar style.
To add an extra dose of Austin to this Texas-sized celebration, Austin's Gourds are set to close out the December 31 performance. And as any proper New Year’s celebration should, their performance will be appropriately accompanied by a balloon drop, champagne toast and appearance by Father Time.
Who needs Father Time when you’ve got the Red Headed Stranger and a few of his closest, most talented friends?