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Willie Nelson, Hank Jr. returning to Charleston

By Staff reports

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Country music legends Willie Nelson and Hank Williams Jr. return to Charleston this spring.

Hank Jr. is to arrive first, along with Jamey Johnson and Southern rock greats .38 Special. They'll play the Charleston Civic Center on April 14. The show is part of Williams's 16-stop "Taking Back the Country" tour.

Williams frequently plays West Virginia. A performer with dozens of hit singles to his credit over the course of more than four decades, he is best known for songs like "Hell Bent and Whiskey Bound" and "All My Rowdy Friends (Have Settled Down)," as well as the long-time opening theme to "Monday Night Football."

No stranger to controversy, the politically conservative singer and occasional guest on Fox News' "Fox and Friends" got into hot water in October over comments comparing President Obama to Adolph Hitler. His "Monday Night Football" theme was pulled by ESPN.

He went on to record "Keep the Change," a song criticizing Obama, ESPN and "Fox and Friends." It was downloaded from iTunes 180,000 times in two days.

Johnson's 2011 wasn't nearly as eventful. Best known for "The Dollar" and "In Color," he charted with the song "Heartache" from the album "The Guitar Song" and was nominated for three Grammy Awards, including Best Country Male Vocal Performance and Best Country Album.

.38 Special was formed in 1974 by Don Barnes and Donnie Van Zant, the younger brother of late Lynyrd Skynyrd lead singer, Ronnie Van Zant. In October, the band released "Live From Texas," recorded at various concerts throughout the Lone Star State last year.

Details, such as ticket prices, have not been released. The concert date is listed on Williams's website but not yet part of the Charleston Civic Center's upcoming-events schedule.

Nelson returns to the Clay Center on May 10.

His career spans nearly 60 years, and the Grammy Award winner is known for many songs, including "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," "On The Road Again," "Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground" and the Patsy Cline hit, "Crazy."

Tickets for the general public go on sale March 5 at 10 a.m. Clay Center Presents Spring 2012 season ticket holders can buy tickets for the Nelson concert Monday at 10 a.m.

Tickets are $30, $55, $65 and $85 and can be purchased online at, in person at the Clay Center box office or by phone, at 304-561-3570.

Nelson's last appearance at the Clay Center was in 2008.


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