March 22, 2011 (Washington, D.C.) – The Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) is honored to announce the exclusive release of the Rolling Stones’ classic “Wild Horses” – performed and produced by the legendary Willie Nelson and his family members. Willie & The Nelson Family are donating the proceeds from the sale of the song to AWI’s campaigns on behalf of wild and domestic horses. Willie and the entire Nelson family are long-time supporters of AWI and its efforts to end horse slaughter and preserve the right of wild horses to roam free.
“The BLM has been rounding them up at an alarming rate, supposedly for their own good. Sadly, there are more wild horses in holding pens than in the wild. Something is wrong with that, so we must act now before the BLM has managed these magnificent animals into extinction,” said Willie Nelson. “It’s time for the cowboys to stand up for the horses.”
The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act was enacted in 1971 to halt the disappearance of these iconic animals from public lands in the American West. Since then, however, over 20 million acres of land set aside by Congress for wild horses have been removed from their range, even as the Bureau of Land Management (BLM)—the very agency charged with their protection—claims there is not enough land to support existing herds. The BLM is unnecessarily removing horses based on spurious claims of damage to range and other adverse impacts. The BLM’s mismanagement of America’s wild horses is largely designed to benefit a livestock industry that has for decades, exploited western public lands while profiting from massive subsidies funded by taxpayer dollars. Willie & The Nelson Family and AWI are calling on the BLM and the Obama administration to immediately halt all wild horse round-ups, restore the land provided by law to wild horses and to stop warehousing horses on private lands at even greater expense to the taxpayer.
“There is no greater voice than Willie Nelson when it comes to speaking for the underdog. For decades, Willie has fought to protect family farmers in America, while also advocating for the humane treatment of horses and other animals,” said Chris Heyde, deputy director of government and legal affairs for AWI. “We are so grateful for the support of Willie and the entire Nelson family and we hope this song will raise awareness of the deteriorating situation facing wild horses and help turn things around before they disappear from their lands forever.”
For more information about the problems facing wild horses and what can be done to improve BLM’s wild horse program, please visit [www.awionline.org/wildhorses](http://www.awionline.org/wildhorses).
To download your very own copy of Willie & The Nelson Family singing “Wild Horses,” please visit [www.awionline.org/willienelson](http://www.awionline.org/willienelson) today! You can download a copy from your favorite service such as iTunes, Amazon and CDBaby. Join us in our effort to save America’s wild horses before it is too late! Be sure to share this release with your local radio station and encourage them to play the song for America’s wild horses.
Willie Nelson (lead vocals/lead guitar/co-producer), daughter Paula Nelson (lead vocals), son Lukas Nelson (lead vocals/harmony vocals), daughter Amy Nelson
(harmony vocals/co-producer), granddaughter Martha Jewelle (drums/co-producer), grandson-in-law Matt Hubbard (vocals/bass/co-producer), son Micah Nelson (vocals/
Charango), daughter Susie Nelson (vocals), grandson Anthony Brewster (vocals), granddaughter, Rebecca Thomas (vocals), great-grandson Zack Thomas (vocals),
grandson Nelson Fowler (vocals), grandson Bryan Fowler (vocals), great-grandson Dean Hubbard (vocals), Landis Armstrong (rhythm guitar/ vocals), Waylon Payne
(harmony vocals) Mastered by Nick Landis at Terra Nova Digital Audio, Austin TX, engineered and mixed by Matt Hubbard and released by Folk Uke Records.