Willie Nelson and his trusty guitar, Trigger, have been through a lot together. The beat-up Martin N-20 acoustic has been with Nelson since he purchased it for $750 in Nashville in 1969. Nelson has played the guitar at his famous Picnics and all over the world. But the famed guitar almost perished in a Christmas Eve fire in 1969.
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The following bit of Willie lore might be familiar to many fans, but a 2015 Rolling Stone documentary on Trigger has been making the rounds on social media lately, especially on the r/Austin subreddit, and well, we never pass up an opportunity to talk about Willie Nelson.
The story goes like this:
On Christmas Eve 1969 in Nashville, Nelson was away from his Ridgetop home when he received a call that his house was on fire.
"I came home, rushed in, and I went in and got my guitar and a pound of weed," Nelson recalls in the documentary. "I saved Trigger, so it was a good day."
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Nelson then took the house fire as a sign that he needed to relocate back to Texas — Austin, specifically.He took Trigger with him.
The full documentary is about 12 minutes long and is narrated by Woody Harrelson. It also features some more Trigger anecdotes like story of the time he had his daughter Lana hide the guitar when the IRS seized his possessions.
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Check out the full video below.