Highway Man

60 Albums, 16 #1 country singles, 5 decades of rockin’ our socks off, This is a tribute to my most admired country picker, sorry Willie & Johnny. In 1949 Littlefield Texas had a 12-year-old guitar picking radio dj that was to become a known name around the world as the outlaw of country music.

waylon jennings photo: Waylon Jennings 5bf1f406.jpg

Playing in a band called The Crickets which some of you will remember as the great Buddy Holly band, he cut his first single the year I was born, 1958. Three days before my 1st birthday February 3rd,1959, Waylon gave his seat on a plane to another famous rocker who wasn’t feeling well and shortly after take off the plane crashed killing Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and J.P. Richardson, better known as “The Big Bopper”. History was changed in more than one way on that tragic day as a vagabond dreamer survived to touch all our hearts with shows and songs from the soul. 1963 found Waylon signing with A&M Records and moving to L.A. to record one album before leaving over differences of musical style. He would remain country instead of turning to pop as they wanted. 1965 found Waylon landing in Nashville and becoming room mates with another legend “The Man In Black” Johnny Cash.

Picture of Johnny Cash

  “Stop the World and Let Me Off” became his first hit that same year. 1968 brought one of my all time favorites when he recorded “Only Daddy That’ll Walk The Line” and a change in the style of music Jennings was putting out, he was offering a more raw, bass driven sound that would become a trademark in the years to come. In 1973 Waylon put out the album “Honky Tonk Heroes” which is the album that showed his outlaw style. During this time he also did recordings with a couple of other stars that would also bond life time friendships with Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson. By the time “Ramblin’ Man” topped the charts in 1974 he had developed a following for his outlaw style including myself.

The second half of the seventies escalated his career even higher when he crossed into the pop charts with “Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way”  and 1975 also earned him the CMA Male Vocalist of the year. He sang duets with his wife Jessi Colter  and others such as Willie Nelson on “Wanted  the Outlaws” but it was in 1978 that the album “Waylon & Willie”  brought us the great hit “Mama’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys” and gave him his second Grammy. For the rest of the seventies and into the early 80’s Waylon kept busy giving us such hits as “Luckenbach, Texas [Back to the Basics of Love] and the unforgettable “Good Ol’ Boys” the theme from The Dukes of Hazzard which he also narrated for television.  The Highway Men is another fantastic band worth checking out that featured Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.  I’ll leave you with this jewel of the Late Great Waylon Jennings.   peace



~ by beibejones on April 25, 2013.

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