logo
 Getty Images
Getty Images

Paula Nelson Inherited Dad Willie Nelson's Voice and Looks Age-defying at 50

Manuela Cardiga
May 10, 2020
07:30 A.M.
Share this pen
FacebookFacebookTwitterTwitterLinkedInLinkedInEmailEmail

Talented singer Paula Nelson carries on with her father, country music legend Willie Nelson's musical legacy.

Advertisement

Singer Paula Nelson is the daughter of country music icon Willie Nelson and has inherited his love for country music.

The child of Nelson's marriage to third wife Connie Koepke, Paula, and her half-brother Lukas Nelson are the only two of the country star's 8 children to take up a career in music.

Paula went through a difficult phase, which included experimenting with drugs and went into rehab at the age of 16

Legendary Outlaw Country singer  Willie Nelson performing on stage in 1978 | Source: Getty Images

Legendary Outlaw Country singer Willie Nelson performing on stage in 1978 | Source: Getty Images

Advertisement

MEET PAULA NELSON

Paula was born while her father was still married to his second wife, rockabilly songstress Shirley Collie. Paula's birth precipitated their divorce.

Nelson subsequently married Paula's mother Connie after the divorce from Shirley was final in 1971, and they shared another daughter, Amy Lee. Sadly, the couple split up in 1988, after nearly 17 years of marriage.

Willie Nelson and ex-wife Shirley Collie performing together in 1961 | Source: Getty Images

Willie Nelson and ex-wife Shirley Collie performing together in 1961 | Source: Getty Images

Advertisement

WILD CHILD OF THE OUTLAW COUNTRY STAR

During her adolescence, Paula went through a difficult phase, which included experimenting with drugs, and went into rehab at the age of 16 for cocaine addiction. Fortunately, Paula survived her ordeal and discovered that she wanted to make music, like her famous dad.

Advertisement

STAGE FRIGHT

But Nelson's cowboy boots were very large for the petite Paula, and initially, she was petrified that being the daughter of a famous star would work against her. As a novice singer, Paula feared that she would automatically be compared to the country music colossus.

Paula Nelson at Willie Nelson's 42nd Annual 4th of July Picnicin Austin Texas in 2015 | Source: Getty Images

Paula Nelson at Willie Nelson's 42nd Annual 4th of July Picnicin Austin Texas in 2015 | Source: Getty Images

Advertisement

The fear of that comparison induced paralyzing stage fright. A friend of the family's, mythical blues musician Clifford Antone, helped Paula get over her fear. She revealed:

"He started, when I was 20, to have me come down to the Guadalupe location, and I would sing one song (...) and that really helped."

Advertisement

A STAR IN HER OWN RIGHT

Paula is a gifted songwriter as well as a singer with a distinctive melodic voice. Paula has a successful career, concentrating on singing live. Paula revealed:

"It's such therapy to get a song on paper (...) I decided I shouldn't have any limitations about what I write about, just write what I feel. And it's cheaper than therapy."

Advertisement

Paula has 5 studio albums to her credit, the first one "Coming Home," from 1998, was released to critical acclaim. "Coming Home" was followed in 2000 by "Fireflies," "Lucky 13" in 2008; "Little City" in 2010, and a covers album, "Under The Influence," was her last album, in 2014.

ON STAGE WITH DAD

Advertisement

In 2013, Paula bravely stepped into the studio with Nelson and recorded a duet, "Have You Ever Seen the Rain" for his hit album "To All the Girls..." The project featured a series of duets, one of them with romantic singer Julio Iglesias, and the rest with well-known female singers, including Paula.

Advertisement

Paula more than held her own, and the song was one of the hits from Nelson's much-anticipated 62nd studio album, which debuted on the Billboard's Top Country Albums chart at #2, and at #9 on the Billboard 200, making it an instant cross-over success.

Paula is also well known to country music fans as the host of "The Paula Nelson Show" on the Outlaw Country channel on Sirius XM where she plays a selection of edgy, and irreverent renegade country music.

Advertisement

DAREDEVIL COUNTRY SINGER

There is another side to Paula. She has a passion for car racing, and she moonlighted as a stunt driver on the TV show "Friday Night Lights" from 2006 to 2011. She also has a black belt in the martial art, taekwondo.

Advertisement

Paula was married in the mid-80s. She dropped her singing career, moved to Colorado and became a massage therapist. Paula confided:

"I wanted that pretty white dress and a walk down the aisle, forever and ever, one person for the rest of your life."

Advertisement

But sadly, the marriage did not work out. Paula moved back to Texas, reunited her band, and healed her broken heart doing what she does best: singing. Paula revealed:

"I'm single. I'm not so sure I'm good at the other stuff, and I think I came by that naturally. There's not one woman left in my family that's still married."

From left to right: Trevor Nelson, Paula Nelson, Jacob Micah Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Amy Nelson, Willie Nelson, Annie D'Angelo, Raelyn Nelson, Rachel Fowler, Dean Hubbard, Martha Fowler, and Lana Nelson at theHard Rock International's Wille Nelson Artist Spotlight Benefit in New York in 2013 | Source: Getty Images

From left to right: Trevor Nelson, Paula Nelson, Jacob Micah Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Amy Nelson, Willie Nelson, Annie D'Angelo, Raelyn Nelson, Rachel Fowler, Dean Hubbard, Martha Fowler, and Lana Nelson at theHard Rock International's Wille Nelson Artist Spotlight Benefit in New York in 2013 | Source: Getty Images

Advertisement

Paula Nelson is now 50, and as glowingly lovely as she was at the beginning of her career, and still determinedly single. Dad, however, is now on his 4th marriage and he seems to have finally got it right.

Nelson and Annie D'Angelo have been married for 29 years, and share sons Lukas and Jacob Nelson. Like his big sister Paula, Lukas is a singer and the frontman for the rock group Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real.

Advertisement
info
Please fill in your e-mail so we can share with you our top stories!
By subscribing, you agree to our Privacy Policy
Advertisement
Related posts

George Strait 'Eloped' with His 'Really Hot' Wife — 50 Years Later They 'Still Like Each Other'

April 30, 2022

Martina McBride Cried on Shoulder of Man Living in a Warehouse, Not Knowing He Would Be Her Husband for Decades

May 18, 2022

Gwen Stefani Found True Love with Blake Shelton after She Faced Infidelity

January 27, 2022

Ricky Nelson's Son Called Mom 'Dragon' Who Did Not Let Him See Family - Uncle Mark Harmon Tried to Take Him

November 26, 2022

Celine Dion's Spouse 'Started to Cry' during Their 1st Meeting — Her Mom Was against Their Marriage

May 12, 2022

Girl Given Up as a Baby by Grandma to Avoid 'Shame' Finally Meets Her Mom 48 Years Later

March 26, 2022

Ricky Nelson Was His 4 Kids’ “Best Friend” - Meet His Talented Lookalike Children & Their Big Families

February 16, 2022

Blake Shelton Fell for Miranda Lambert While Still Married — They Divorced after He Met Gwen Stefani

April 26, 2022

Loretta Lynn 'Never Knew Where Babies Came From' until It Happened to Her — Meet Her Big Family

April 08, 2022

Ozzie & Harriet Nelson's Family Faced 'Huge Discrepancy' between Their Real Life & On-Screen Portrayal

April 19, 2022

Naomi Judd's Heart Was 'Ripped Out and Stomped on by Men' ⁠— Inside Her Marriages

May 06, 2022

Loretta Lynn Gave Birth at 16 — She Felt 'Sorry' for Her Twins & 2 of Her 6 Kids Died Unexpectedly

October 04, 2022

Martin Sheen's Four Children Follow in His Footsteps - One of Them Also Inherited His Vices

February 04, 2022

Ozzie Nelson's Wife Harriet Gave up Career When She Fell in Love & Wanted a Family with Him before They Wed

May 23, 2022