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Country music legend Willie Nelson reveals shocking suicide attempt in new memoir


[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]

Willie Nelson is opening up about his early career life and mental health in his upcoming memoir.

The book of the 89-year-old man is titled Me and Paul: The Story of a Legendary Friendship Dive into his life with his late best friend Paul English. If you’re a fan of country music, you might recognize the name – as Nelson also has a song called Me and Paul which he dedicated to English in 1971. The two were very close until the drummer’s death in 2020, and the upcoming memoir celebrates their incredible friendship that spans more than six decades.

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Based on PeopleThe book contains a lot of good humor, but it also has more serious moments. One of the most shocking was Willie’s previously untold story of a suicide attempt. The On the road again The singer revealed in an excerpt the outlet shared on Friday in his early career he struggled with getting his feet off the ground after moving to Nashville:

“This is me in my late twenties, trying to handle things. I can’t. I was encouraged by friends like Paul and professionals like Mae Axton to make my mark in a city where country music has made many artists millionaires. But after months of hustle and bustle, I’m still a poor man.”

He went on to recount how he always had a “get up and go” attitude, but being in Tennessee changed him. He says he doesn’t make “a dime” while others around him grow – and because of this, he begins to question his abilities:

“I was not welcome in that community. But my problem is that too many members of the group make a living with music while I don’t. Not a penny. Not only was no one interested in my songs, it took me a while to find a bar where I could sing. I had to go back to hawk encyclopedias. And because my heart wasn’t in it, I failed at that.”

The Riders In The Sky The singer said he had begun to struggle with alcoholism, which eventually led to deep thoughts. He recalls how his “depressive illness” got him “within reach”:

“One thing I maybe Drank. But I would hardly call you a good drinker. I would get moody or even worse, go crazy and fight someone twice my size… Looking back on my life, my early days in Nashville were a glaring low point. I’m not one to fall into depression easily, but depression has me in its hand. “

Very very sad…

That’s when Nelson says he started to really think about taking his own life:

“I thought about an old song I heard Lightnin’ Hopkins cut back at Gold Studios in Houston. He sang about feeling so bad until he rested his head on some deserted railway line and let it ease his troubled mind. So why not?”

He actually tried too. The country music legend told the story of him lying on Broadway waiting for someone to hit him. He recalls people “going astray” – barely avoiding running past him:

“Me too. I lie down, getting ready to stay. Eyes closed. Ready to move on and move out. If this world doesn’t work, maybe the next one will. I lay down for five minutes. , then ten, then fifteen. Somehow — maybe it was bad weather and late hours — but there was hardly any traffic. If a driver or two saw me, they would avoid sugar. “

Too scared…

No one hit him, though. And he decided to get up, go back to the bar and have “another drink”. He expressed that he was unsure of what he was feeling in that moment:

“Do I feel relieved? Am I disappointed? Can’t say for sure. All I know is that I woke up, went back to Tootsie’s and had another drink. “

The excerpt then moves on to the next day – the very day Willie ran into Paul:

‘How in the name of God did you find me here?’

‘I’m watching you, son. You must know it now. ‘

Paul English is leaning on our hood. It’s four o’clock in the afternoon, and I’m barely awake. It was the day after I tried to ease my troubled mind on Broadway. Paul’s timing was strange. “

The 89-year-old writes about a conversation the two shared and how it completely changed his outlook on life:

“Last night’s storm had passed and left a clear blue sky when it awoke. As usual, Paul looked very sharp. Clean like a whistle. Happy as a nightingale. I said, “An eye-popping sight. ‘What do you have to worry about?’

‘Tough night.’

‘Nice day.'”

OH. What a touching moment in very few words…

The Pancho and Lefty The musician said the man who would become his lifelong best friend – and eventually his drummer – invited him to dinner for the afternoon. Nelson admitted to English that he wasn’t sure he would “be around” much longer, but his friends were able to make such a difference in him with their crosswalks that he eventually forget it all together. He recalls how Marie The musician saw a “pink” future for him even though he “couldn’t afford to buy his wife a dozen roses”.

So sweet…

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After this visit, City of New Orleans Songster pursued songwriting and continues to be hailed as “one of the most recognizable artists in country music”.

We’re so glad Paul was there for Willie and was able to make a difference for him when he was at his lowest. It is touching to hear stories of such a true friendship. Me and Paul: The Story of a Legendary Friendship will hit shelves on September 20. Did you read it, longtime readers? Let us know in the comments below).

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), texting “STRENGTH” to the Line. Crisis text at 741-741 or visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

[Image via Arnold Wells/WENN.com]



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