Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard have been forced to postpone the start of their 2015 Django and Jimmie Tour due to a health issue concerning the 82-year-old Nelson. The trek was slated to begin on Thursday (October 15th) in Florence, South Carolina, but a representative for the legendary country singer-songwriter confirms the date had to be rescheduled. A new date will be announced for sometime next year.
Friday’s performance in Roanoke, Virginia, has also been postponed, but not as far into the future: Nelson and Haggard will now perform on Monday, October 19th. Fans in Reading, Pennsylvania, however, weren’t so lucky — the Saturday, October 17th, show scheduled for the Santander Arena has been canceled entirely.
While the nature of Nelson’s illness is unknown, the fact that he’ll return to the road on Sunday, October 18th, suggests he is doing well. He’ll perform that day at the American Roots Music and Arts Festival at Walnut Creek Amphitheater in Raleigh, North Carolina, a date that was not part of the Django and Jimmie trek.
Nelson and Haggard are longtime friends and collaborators, first meeting at a poker game at Nelson’s Nashville home in 1964, when they were both struggling songwriters. In 1982, they recorded their first duet LP, Pancho and Lefty, and their latest collaboration, Django and Jimmie, topped the country chart when it was released in June. The title is a tribute to their musical heroes, guitarist Django Reinhardt and the Father of Country Music, Jimmie Rodgers.