Country icon Willie Nelson has been forced to withdraw from a fundraising gig after being hospitalised with breathing problems, report the NME. The 79-year was due to play at a charity event for the Dumb Friends League in Colorado, but health concerns have taken precedent for the aging legend.
The singer's entourage decided to take no risks when it came to Willie's health after he was "suffering from breathing problems due to the high altitude and emphysema." There are currently no further updates to his state of health.A recent interview with the Guardian may shed some light on Willie's recent breathing problems. He told the English newspaper, known for its left wing values, that "If we made marijuana legal, we'd save a whole lotta money and lives." The country and western veteran went on to explain his views on the drug's health concerns: "most people realise it's not a deadly drug like cocaine or cigarettes. Cigarettes killed my mother, my dad, half my family, so don't tell me about health when you're talking about legalising marijuana because it's not dangerous healthwise." Nelson was himself arrested for possession of the drug he so often eulogises and justifies in 2009.
The news will leave fans of the wily old singer tremendously upset, and he represented somewhat of a coup for the Dumb Friends League. With a staggering 200 albums under his belt, and 7 Grammy awards, his pedigree is without question, but at 78, health matters are a priority, even though the man lives to be on stage.