Waylon Jennings - Wanted! - The Outlaws
The "Outlaws." Waylon & Willie. Waylon & Jessi. Tompall Glaser. The immortal "My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys." The eloquent writing of Willie Nelson on "Me and Paul"; Jessi Colter's plaintive little-girl voice; Tompall Glaser's rowdy attitude; and the golden baritone of Waylon Jennings. In 1976, this album made country music history by being the first country album to ever make platinum (one million sales). It flew in the face of what was acceptable in Nashville at the time. It was solid, hardcore, Texas-flavored country. In this edition, Waylon and Willie got back together, dug out nine tracks from the original recording sessions, then went into the studio to record Steve Earle's "Nowhere Road" as a salute to twenty years of "Outlaws."
The original 11 tracks are good enough. With all the extra music, it's an extra treat and a delight to listen to. In addition to "My Heroes...," the Outlaws kick through Billy Joe Shaver's "Honky Tonk Heroes (Like Me)," Jessi Colter's lovely "I'm Looking For Blue Eyes," Waylon and Willie's "A Good Hearted Woman," and Tompall Glaser singing Jimmie Rodgers' classic "T For Texas" and Shel Silverstein's delightfully fun "Put Another Log on the Fire." Six of the original 11 tracks are legendary country standards. The nine additional tracks from the 1976 sessions include songs written by Willie, Buck Owens, and Jessi. Of them is Waylon's brilliant performance of "(I'm a) Ramblin' Man," and Waylon and Jessi performing the old standard, "Under your Spell Again." The final cut, recorded in 1996, puts a neat capper on the "Outlaw movement," with one of today's most outspoken outlaws, Steve Earle, writing for and playing with the originals. It's a great song, and if anything, Waylon and Willie sound even better 20 years later.
This is one of the most comprehensive collections of Waylon & Willie songs without actually being a "greatest hits" collection. Twenty years of great music, and it will leave you wanting more.
Reviewed by -- Kathy Coleman