A Monday morning is admittedly an odd time to post a song like “Whiskey River.” But since it is one of Willie’s signature songs, the one he starts each concert with, I am posting it anyway.
This clip is from the 1986 Farm Aid concert. I saw Willie in concert a number times in the early 1980s: in Nashville at the Tennessee State Fair with my friend Bob; at Willie’s 4th of July Picnic outside of Austin, TX; in Saginaw, Michigan; and in the Twin Cities a couple of time. I loved every concert.
His first three songs were always the same: “Whiskey River” followed up by “Blood Mary Morning” followed by “Will the Circle Be Unbroken.”
As I have said here before, one of the things I have always enjoyed the most about Country Music as opposed to most other kinds of music is precisely this mix of the sacred and the profane. It is real. Real life and real faith… like Johnny Cash singing “Folsom Prison Blues” and a gospel tune. Only true Country (white man’s Blues), Delta Blues, and the music of John Coltrane have this simultaneous mix of the sacred and profane. I love it.
So on a Monday morning… maybe a little Willie Nelson singing “Whiskey River” makes sense after all.