NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Willie Nelson may have written himself another classic, and CMT Music Awards viewers will get a chance to judge for themselves.
Nelson will be joined by an all-star supporting cast Wednesday for a rendition of his newest fan favourite "Roll Me Up," a song he's been closing his live shows with lately to great reaction. Toby Keith, Zac Brown Band, Darius Rucker and Jamey Johnson will join the party on stage in front of a live audience of thousands and CMT's viewing audience.
"You can be there when we spring it on the Nashville crowd," Nelson said. "That will be the big test, I think."
The country music awards are known for interesting mashups, and Nelson's ode to marijuana has real comic potential. An infectious song from his new album "Heroes" that invites you to sing along, Nelson plays on his reputation for recreational opportunities with the chorus of "Roll me up and smoke me when I die."
Rucker immediately loved the song when he first heard it.
"It's so Willie," he said. "It's just get up there, play it live and have people dance along to it. It's really what Willie does best. His voice sounds so cool on it. It's just one of those Willie songs that's just undeniable."
It's not the first time Nelson has recorded a song that's gotten stuck in our brains. "Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys" with Waylon Jennings and the evergreen anthem "On the Road Again" have been on repeat in America's collective memory for decades.
Yet Nelson's not sure exactly what makes a song go viral.
"If I knew the answer to that, I'd be a trillionaire," Nelson said. "You've got to be lucky and trust your instincts and judgment. And I've found that people all over the world are not that much different in the things they like and in the things they laugh and cry about. And if it makes me happy, there's a good chance that someone else is going to like it."