Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson performs in concert during the Heartbreaker Banquet on March 19, 2015 in Luck, Texas.

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Willie Nelson is the latest recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

The Gershwin prize recognizes a living music artist’s lifetime achievement in promoting song to enhance cultural understanding; entertaining and informing audiences; and inspiring new generations. The singer-songwriter and guitarist will be honored in Washington in November.

Willie Nelson Scores First No. 1 on Top Country Albums in 28 Years

Previous recipients are Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, songwriting duo Burt Bacharach and the late Hal David, Carole King and Billy Joel
“Willie Nelson is a musical explorer, redrawing the boundaries of country music throughout his career,” Librarian of Congress James Billington said in a statement. “A master communicator, the sincerity and universally appealing message of his lyrics place him in a category of his own while still remaining grounded in his country music roots.
“Like America itself, he has absorbed and assimilated diverse stylistic influences into his stories and songs. He has helped make country music one of the most universally beloved forms of American artistic expression.”

This story originally appeared in The Hollywood Reporter