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The End Of An Era

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In a shocking turn of events, country music legend Willie Nelson has announced that he no longer smokes weed. While performing a two night stint at the Majestic Theater in San Antonio, TX, Nelson sat down with a local reporter from KSAT and explained that he no longer smokes due to a breathing issue.

"I have abused my lungs quite a bit in the past, so breathing is a little more difficult these days and I have to be careful. I started smoking cedar bark, went from that to cigarettes to whatever. And that almost killed me."

Making Changes

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The 86-year-old singer and musician explained that he was making this change in order to be healthier in his old age.

"I don't smoke anymore - take better care of myself."

There have been rumors of Nelson's failing health for a while now, but he told KSAT that he doesn't listen to that kind of gossip, he's just happy to still be around and making the music that he loves.

"I don’t give a (expletive deleted) I’m here, I’m glad to be here. I’m lucky to be here."

A Recent Change

This is clearly a recent change because Nelson was on the cover of Rolling Stone in April for "The Weed Issue," and Nelson explained in the interview that "marijuana saved his life." He claimed that smoking weed kept him from drinking whiskey and smoking cigarettes and he credited his longevity to the drug.

"I wouldn’t be alive. It saved my life, really. I wouldn’t have lived 85 years if I’d have kept drinking and smoking like I was when I was 30, 40 years old. I think that weed kept me from wanting to kill people. And probably kept a lot of people from wanting to kill me, too — out there drunk, running around."

A Part Of The Persona

Smoking weed has always been a part of Nelson's persona, so it will be interesting to see how he adapts. He recorded a song called "My Medicine" in 2009 with fellow cannabis enthusiast Snoop Dogg, and even serves on the advisory board for NORML. He explained his huge tolerance in GQ in 2015.

"I wasn’t enjoying smoking cigarettes. It’s really that simple. I was getting nothing from a cigarette except pneumonia and cancer. And at least from a hit off a joint I got a little brief high off of it. I have a huge tolerance for pot. I can probably smoke with anybody anywhere. Me and Snoop Dogg had a smoke-off in Amsterdam and he crawled away."

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