Music

Despite Bad Weather, Willie Nelson’s Luck Reunion Was Unforgettable

Lorie Liebig also contributed to this article.

Although it didn’t quite go according to plan, Willie Nelson’s Luck Reunion was still filled with stellar performances that attendees won’t soon forget.

Thunderstorms late in the afternoon postponed the small music festival until roughly 9PM. Some guests waited out the bad weather in their cars, while others found shelter in the old wooden buildings on the grounds.

The scene before the storm was jovial. Nelson’s Luck Ranch — once used as a Wild West town for a movie set — transformed into festival grounds for the day.

The town square held the World Headquarter’s main stage. A small chapel building, with no A/C or fan inside, hosted intimate songwriter performances. In the backyard, the Revival Tent held musicians preaching the gospel of country and rock and roll.

In tiny Hill Country town, artists, musicians and festival goers all mingled in the same setting. Kacey Musgraves, who was slated to be the surprise performer of the evening, shopped at the pop-up stores and was photographed by the field of rescue horses on the ranch. Bill Murray was spotted in the crowd. Bands casually strolled the grounds and listened to artists they’d not seen in person yet.

On the main stage, at least half of the day’s scheduled performers were able to play. The stand-out was Oklahoma’s John Fullbright, who played a commanding set of rock-and-roll.

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Photo: Matt Alpert

In the artist and VIP area nearby, a handful of artists played pickup sets. Green River Ordinance gathered around a mic to sing “Simple Life.”

Photo: Matt Alpert
Photo: Matt Alpert

All the while, a massive wall of grey clouds approached Luck from the sky above.

Around 5:30 PM, the Luck Fire Marshall ordered the crowd to wait out the impending storm in their cars or under Luck’s limited roofed areas.

The shelter spaces were cramped, but despite the rainy weather, spirits remained high. If you get a group of creatives together in tight quarters, they are bound to make the best out of the situation.

Under the Revival Tent, singer-songwriter Lissie treated hold-outs to an acoustic performance set to the thunderclaps outside.

 

A handful of folks who waited out the rain in Nelson’s barn were treated to an impromptu performance by Dylan LeBlanc.

 

Fans who braved the bad weather were rewarded with intimate sets inside Nelson’s 50-seat chapel. Jack Ingram washed away the crowd’s worries with his timely track, “It’s Always Gonna Rain.”

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Lorie Liebig

The last artist to perform on the Chapel stage was Texas country legend Billy Joe Shaver, who performed his hits “Heart of Texas,” “Honky Tonk Hero” and “I’m Just an Old Chunk of Coal (But I’m Gonna Be a Diamond Someday).”

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Lorie Liebig

Under the Revival Tent, songwriter John Moreland hushed a packed crowd.

#johnmoreland #luckreunion

A photo posted by Bobby Dean Orcutt (@bobbydeanorcutt) on

Rising star Margo Price delivered a rocking set of country music.

Rain is gone, show goes on at @luckreunion. @missmargoprice onstage! #luckreunion #williesranch

A photo posted by No Depression (@nodepression) on

Finally, the night was wrapped up with an appearance by the festival’s host, Willie Nelson. With the help of his son, Lukas, Jenny Lewis and others, he tore through many of his latest and greatest hits.

#luckreunion #sxsw #austin #as98 #heartwornhighwaysrevisited #willienelson @jennydianelewis

A photo posted by A.S.98 (@as98usa) on

Although bad weather forced Nelson to move his performance from the Main stage to the much-smaller Revival stage, no one seemed to mind the cramped quarters.

Despite the bad weather at Luck, it’s safe to say guests felt lucky to be there.

RELATED: 15 Things You Didn’t Know About Willie Nelson

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Despite Bad Weather, Willie Nelson’s Luck Reunion Was Unforgettable