Reviews for Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die : Musings from the Road


Kirkus Reviews 2012 October #2
Legendary musician Nelson and his friends share a year's worth of stories, lyrics, riffs and dirty jokes. At age 79, the prolific Nelson (A Tale Out of Luck, 2008, etc.) shows no signs of slowing down as he continues to travel the world with his "band of gypsies." This funny, heartwarming collection doesn't quite capture the experience of being on the road with the circus, but Nelson's unmistakable voice shines through. The songwriter shares tales from the road, thoughts of the day, early memories, classic lyrics, and recollections of people like Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings, among a host of lesser-known collaborators. Sister Bobbie Nelson and various children also chime in, while Kinky Friedman offers an affectionate foreword and Nelson's son Micah contributes some terrific portraits of everyone from Ray Charles to Django Reinhardt. There are some semi-serious moments, but the best characteristic about the book is its sense of being mostly unplanned. Page by page, you might get a list of the best pickers Willie has ever heard, the lyrics and the inspiration for "Shotgun Willie," or musings on golf, addiction, biodiesel, Farm Aid or the Occupy movement. However, it is neither as immaterial as The Tao of Willie (2006) nor as essential as his autobiography. Like another collection, The Facts of Life and Other Dirty Jokes (2001), how closely readers follow Nelson's meandering path may largely depend on their own lucidity at the time. Just one volume in Nelson's long story that remains much like its author: funny, inspirational and bawdy, with a well-honed sense of humor. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

----------------------
Library Journal Reviews 2012 June #1

With his career stuttering and his personal life in shreds, Nelson wasn't facing the greatest Christmas in 1971; even his house burned down. So he decided to change everything, shrugging off pressures to sound Nashville and heading in a whole new creative direction. A memoir-cum-inspirational tale that's right for the holidays; with a 125,000-copy first printing.

[Page 79]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

----------------------
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 November #1

The latest in a collection of anecdotes and essays from singer-songwriter Nelson (The Facts of Life and Other Dirty Jokes) serves to reinforce his image as a sentimental country veteran who isn't averse to firing up the occasional joint or two. A mix of mundane diary entries ("It's a nice plane ride.... Thanks, American"); philosophic musings ("They say there are no ex-wives, only additional wives"; "once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you'll start having positive results"); the stories behind songs like "Shotgun Willie"; and pointed essays on the Occupy movement and Farm Aid, peppered with the occasional dirty joke, the book makes for an irreverent, entertaining read. Humble, optimistic, and quick to give credit to those around him for contributing to his success, Nelson is a charming narrator, lurching from subject to subject, but always with a point in mind. Readers interested in linear recounting of Nelson's colorful life are better served by his 2000 autobiography, but those who want to know him will do well to seek out this volume. It's the next best thing to an audience with the star performer. (Nov.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

----------------------
Publishers Weekly Annex Reviews

The latest in a collection of anecdotes and essays from singer-songwriter Nelson (The Facts of Life and Other Dirty Jokes) serves to reinforce his image as a sentimental country veteran who isn't averse to firing up the occasional joint or two. A mix of mundane diary entries ("It's a nice plane ride.... Thanks, American"); philosophic musings ("They say there are no ex-wives, only additional wives"; "once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you'll start having positive results"); the stories behind songs like "Shotgun Willie"; and pointed essays on the Occupy movement and Farm Aid, peppered with the occasional dirty joke, the book makes for an irreverent, entertaining read. Humble, optimistic, and quick to give credit to those around him for contributing to his success, Nelson is a charming narrator, lurching from subject to subject, but always with a point in mind. Readers interested in linear recounting of Nelson's colorful life are better served by his 2000 autobiography, but those who want to know him will do well to seek out this volume. It's the next best thing to an audience with the star performer. (Nov.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

----------------------