Luck Reunion 2023:
Where Music and Magic Collide in the Heart of Texas
Luck, Texas – Deep in the heart of Texas, just outside of Austin lies Willie Nelson’s legendary ranch, Luck, TX. This year, the highly anticipated Luck Reunion music festival returned, offering attendees a respite from the hustle and bustle of Austin’s SXSW. With its diverse lineup and unique charm, Luck Reunion has cemented itself as one of the most exclusive and coveted events in the country and roots music scene.
Organized by cannabis-friendly music enthusiasts and headlined by the legendary Willie Nelson, Luck Reunion embodies the spirit of pushing for nationwide cannabis legalization. Although Texas laws prevent the supply of cannabis on the property, the event allows for its consumption freely… I mean, it’s Willie’s ranch for pot’s sake! Backstage in the VIP area, I experienced the rockstar treatment, surrounded by luxurious Mexican blankets and enjoying smoke breaks with top-quality cannabis flower from Phyno and excellent hash from SoCal Dank, complemented by my trusty PuffCo Proxy.
While deeply rooted in country and roots music, Luck Reunion embraces diverse genres. Indie rock titans like Spoon graced the stage alongside soulful acts such as Sierra Elizabeth Ferrell and Margo Price, creating a harmonious blend of musical experiences.
At the age of 79, Lubbock’s Terry Allen took the stage with the all-star Panhandle Mystery Band, featuring the talented Charlie Sexton. Another legendary Flatlander, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, performed with the West Texas Exiles, and Michael Martin Murphey returned for the second consecutive year.
A standout moment was the tribute to the Texas Tornados, led by Shawn Sahm, son of the late Texas legend Doug Sahm. Sahm perfectly captured the energy and vibe that defined his father’s career, bringing the audience to their feet.
Undoubtedly, one of the defining moments of the 2023 Luck Reunion was the tribute to Leon Russell orchestrated by producers Beau Bedford and Robert Ellis. Margo Price and Sierra Ferrell elevated the tribute even further, delivering captivating performances that left an indelible mark on attendees’ memories.
Sierra Ferrell and Margo Price also shone on the main stage, with Sierra mesmerizing the crowd with her rendition of Willie’s “Seven Spanish Angels.” Margo Price’s exceptional performance stood out for several reasons. Originally added to the lineup due to weather-related rescheduling, she played with The Band of Heathens on only 24 hours’ notice, creating an incredible set with a larger sound than she was accustomed to. Notably, the Band of Heathens had just released their new album, “Simple Things,” on the same day.
While the open-air stages showcased remarkable talent, the smaller stages within Willie’s Chapel, the Saloon, and the Barn Stage offered intimate settings that made attending these performances a stroke of luck in itself. The Chapel Stage, though limited in capacity, provided a more personal and memorable experience for those lucky enough to secure a seat. Similarly, the Saloon Stage’s small setting required careful planning and long wait times to catch a glimpse of the talented artists.
This year, the Barn Stage was enclosed in a white tent due to possible thunderstorms and cold weather, creating an intimate atmosphere that quickly filled to capacity. Latecomers were left to listen from outside, cherishing the distant melodies.
As the grand finale, the legendary Willie Nelson, who turned 90 in April, took the stage, defying age and frigid temperatures in the 40s to deliver an unforgettable headliner set. Joined by his son, Micah (Particle Kid), and Ray Benson, Willie enchanted the crowd. William Prince and other artists later graced the stage, showcasing the unique moments that only the Luck Reunion can foster.
Luck Reunion 2023 proved once again why it remains an unparalleled celebration of music and camaraderie. From the cannabis-friendly atmosphere to the diverse lineup and intimate performances, this festival on Willie Nelson’s ranch in Luck, Texas, continues to captivate and inspire music lovers from all walks of life.