Actor Ethan Hawke recently spilled some backstage dirt about Willie Nelson’s 2003 birthday concert in New York City, including a great story about Kris Kristofferson totally owning Toby Keith in a verbal scuffle about politics. Here’s the story from the new Rolling Stone.
Hawke said he witnessed “one of country music’s brightest stars (who shall remain nameless)” tell Kristofferson not to sing “any of that lefty (stuff) out there tonight.”
The clue that pretty much ensures it was Toby Keith came when Hawke said, “At that moment in time, the star had a monster radio hit about bombing America’s enemies back into the Stone Age.” As the Boot notes, the only popular song like that at the time was Keith’s “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American).”
What Keith perhaps didn’t know is that Kristofferson is (A) a Rhodes Scholar and (B) a former captain and helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army. Oh, it’s on now.
“You ever worn your country’s uniform?” Kristofferson replied.
“What?” said Keith.
Kristofferson: “Don’t ‘what’ me, boy! You heard the question. You just don’t like the answer. I asked, ‘Have you ever served your country?’ The answer is, ‘No, you have not … You don’t know what the (blankety blank) you are talking about!’”
***Update: Toby Keith and Kris Kristofferson deny Ethan Hawke’s story: click here.