Meet Lily Meola, Willie Nelson’s Protégée

Screengrab via YouTube

If you haven’t yet heard of singer-songwriter Lily Meola, we’re here to change that.

Born and raised in Maui, Hawaii, Lily started singing at age 11 when she performed as Dulcinea in a school production of “Man of La Mancha.” It also didn’t hurt that she was a good friend of Bob Rock (Michael Buble’s producer).

It was her connection with Willie Nelson, though, that took her music career to the next level. Willie’s wife, Annie, introduced the two after she insisted he go see Lily perform at Maui’s Café des Amis (where she played often). From that point on, Willie took her under his wing and helped foster her career.

With a jazzy, throwback feel to her voice, Lily’s talent comes off as effortless and sultry. Her tone is beautifully unique and carries you back to a different era — think Haley Reinhart with a country twist.

She has recorded her debut album, They Say, and it is currently available for pre-sale. The album will feature duets with both Willie and Kris Kristofferson.

Lily opened a few shows for Shooter Jennings and Lukas Nelson earlier this year and will be opening for Lee Brice in March, 2016.

If you haven’t had the pleasure of listening to Lily sing yet, here are some videos that I guarantee will make you fall in love with her.

Lily Meola singing “Sinkin’ Soon” live in Austin, TX at the Heartbreaker Banquet during SXSW 2014:


Lily Meola duetting with Willie Nelson at Farm Aid 2014 in Raleigh, NC singing “Will You Remember Mine”:


Lily Meola covering Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush” live with Tom Conway at The Maui Arts and Cultural Center:

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

recommended for you

Meet Lily Meola, Willie Nelson’s Protégée