His birthday is actually tomorrow, April 30, and he'll be 80 years on earth. Willie Nelson is one of those musicians whose music transcends its genre.
When I was still in college he came to the university to play a concert and I had the opportunity to illustrate a t-shirt for that show. I depicted him riding a guitar like a horse. A couple of years later I was at another concert and saw a young lady walk by wearing the t-shirt.
Flash forward twenty or so years and Willie's bus is parked outside the building where my wife Becky once worked. He was in the building on business visiting a lawyer or something. When he returned to the bus there was a throng of fans, including Becky, wanting his autograph and he graciously complied.
When she called me to let me know he was there and that she was going down to meet him I said, "Ask him if he remembers the t-shirt at East Texas State University in the 1970s."
She asked him and he said with that famous smile, "Well, tell him I remembered."
The Sunday, April 28 edition of The Dallas Morning News featured 80 artists' images of Willie and here's mine. The rest can be seen at this link.