Cannabis enthusiast and national goddamned treasure Willie Nelson last released a 4/20 album seven years ago. As if God Himself had a hand in the matter, Country Music, released on April 20, 2010, peaked at #4 on the Country charts and #20 on the Billboard charts. It makes sense then that Nelson has decided to stream his new album God's Problem Child at NPR precisely eight days before its April 28 release date.
God's Problem Child is funny, wise, grizzled, touching, downcast, and then funny again. Nelson's wit is still sharp—he co-wrote seven of these songs with his longtime producer Buddy Cannon via text message, so the lines had to land—whether he's hitting Trump on "Delete and Fast Forward" ("Elections are over and nobody won") or poking fun at rumors of his demise on "Still Not Dead" ("Woke up still not dead again today / The internet said I had passed away"). It closes with a Gary Nicholson-penned tribute to Nelson's friend and fellow legend Merle Haggard, who died a year and two weeks ago today: "When it comes to country music, he's the world / And it wouldn't be all it is without Merle / But he won't ever be gone."
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