Willie Nelson Re-Records ‘I’ll Be Seeing You’ for COVID-19 Vaccine PSA [Watch]
Willie Nelson is lending his voice to a new sports-themed PSA encouraging Americans to get their COVID-19 vaccination. The country legend has recorded a new version of "I'll Be Seeing You," which he originally included on his 1994 studio album, Healing Hands of Time.
"I'll be seeing you / In all the old familiar places / That this heart of mine embraces / All day through," Nelson sings in the first verse of the song. "In that small cafe / The park across the way / The children's carousel / The chestnut trees / The wishin' well..."
Written in the 1930s by Irving Kahal and Sammy Fain, "I'll Be Seeing You" appeared in the Broadway musical Right This Way, as well as a 1944 film also titled I'll Be Seeing You. It has been performed by the likes of Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby, and Crosby's version was the first to be part of a historical world event as the final transmission sent by NASA to the Opportunity Mars Rover at the end of a mission in 2019.
Now, Nelson's version serves as the backdrop to the new Ad Council and COVID Collaborative PSA, which gathered footage of sporting events from the NBA, the WNBA, the NFL, NASCAR and many more sports leagues and organizations, according to Wide Open Country.
The PSA shows a montage of unforgettable sports moments and crowd reactions to them, underscoring the powerful connections that take place during the kind of large, in-person mass gatherings that haven't been able to happen since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020.
"The COVID-19 vaccines are here," white lettering across the screen reads at the end of the clip. "We'll see you soon."
It's a simple message encouraging sports fans — and everyone else — to get their COVID-19 shot when it's their turn, in order to bring back sporting events and other aspects of pre-pandemic everyday life as quickly as possible.
"I'm happy to be part of this new campaign with the Ad Council, COVID Collaborative and these sports organizations to empower millions more to get the answers they need and feel confident in getting vaccinated, like I did," Nelson says in a statement.
The 87-year-old country superstar got his dose of the vaccine in January 2021, posing for a series of pictures while getting vaccinated in his car at a drive-thru site. The masked Nelson flashed a thumbs-up to the camera after getting his shot, adding the statement, "Getting your COVID vaccine is Willie cool!"