But the longtime musician, who is being honored with a month-long tribute in the Cinefamily film, Kris Kristofferson: A Cowboy in Hollywood, also reveals to FOX411 a growing struggle with memory loss.
“I wish my memory weren’t so bad,” Kristofferson said. “They tell me it’s from all the football and boxing and the concussions that I got. A couple of years ago, my memory just started going. But I can remember my songs, so I can perform but other than that ”
Kristofferson is known as a Renaissance man, his early career focused on academics, as he attended Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship, where he played rugby and also boxed. The Texas native later joined the Army, but after being offered a teaching job at West Point, he left the military to write songs, penning such hits as “Me and Bobby McGee” and “Sunday Mornin’ Coming Down.”
From then on, the Country Music Hall of Fame inductee spent a life in not only acting, but also music, performing with Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings in The Highwaymen, and continuing to make films.
“The music is who I am,” he told Fox. “When I was a little boy I was writing songs, but I started doing them both (acting and performing) and was getting hired in the same week. Both were no preparation, no training.”
The father of eight who has been married for 33 years says despite his memory deficits, he’s living with no regrets, calling himself “blessed.”
“I can’t think of anything that I could do that I haven’t done,” said Kristofferson, who won a Golden Globe Award for best actor alongside Barbra Streisand in A Star is Born. “Maybe if I were to write and direct a film but I don’t think I will ever do that. I just feel so lucky to be around so many great people.”