Today in 1933 the birthday of country music legend Willie Nelson.

He says he was born so late at night that the county courthouse recorded his birthday as April 30, so he kind of gets to celebrate two birthdays!

But numbers have not always been so kind to the music great.

Back in the early 1990s, Willie Nelson put out a record to pay off millions in back taxes.

To owe millions in taxes you first have to earn millions.

Willie made his by writing and performing hit after hit, for himself as well as songs for other artists, including fellow country legend Patsy Cline.

But apparently Willie’s managers and accountants hadn’t been setting aside any money to pay taxes on all that money.

Instead, they’d made some investments that went bust, and set up tax shelters that turned out not to be legal tax shelters.

And Willie himself was legendary for giving away huge amounts of cash to bandmates, family members, charities, sometimes even total strangers with sad stories to tell.

So when the Internal Revenue Service tried to collect these back taxes, there wasn’t any money left.

Instead, in November 1990, they raided Nelson’s Texas ranch, eventually putting the property and a lot of his possessions up for auction to pay off the debt.

Nelson wasn’t happy about all this, of course, but he said as long as he had his guitar, he would be ok.

He had sent that beloved six string, nicknamed Trigger, to his daughter so it couldn’t be seized.

But he also put his skill with a guitar to good use, making a deal with the IRS to record an album and give them the royalties.

It was called “The IRS Tapes: Who’ll Buy My Memories?”

And even by country music standards, the track listing was a bit of a downer, with songs like “Wake Me When It’s Over,” “What Can You Do To Me Now” and “Remember The Good Times.”

To be clear, Willie would’ve had to sell a huge number of albums to pay off all of his back taxes plus interest and penalties, and while the record did well, it also ran into problems: he did a series of TV ads for the record with the wrong phone number on it.

But the album did help pay off part of the debt.

So did the lawsuits Willie filed against the people who had left him with that debt in the first place.

The property auction helped, too, and in a way that worked out well for the singer.

The people who bought the ranch did so to help Willie keep it, as a thank you for all his charity work.

Eventually the debt was paid off and the whole experience was a big lesson learned, but one that even Willie Nelson could eventually laugh about.

In 2003 he did a Super Bowl ad for tax preparer H&R Block.

Today in 1970, the birthday of Andre Agassi.

The tennis champ once figured out how to read rival Boris Becker’s massive serve in an unusual way.

In watching tapes of old matches, Agassi realized that during the serve Becker would stick his tongue out in the direction of where he was going to hit the ball.

You don’t have to read minds if you can read tongues!

Poor Willie (Texas Monthly) 

WATCH: The amazing story of how Andre Agassi read Boris Becker’s serve by watching his tongue (Tennis365)

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