Decades ago, Waylon Jennings earned his spot on the Outlaw Country Mount Rushmore, sandwiched somewhere between Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson. Anyone wondering if he really deserved that honor just needs to listen to the first few tracks off Waylon Forever, the last album he recorded. His distinctive baritone is as strong as ever and the songs just as memorable. Heâ€™s joined on the record by his son Shooter Jennings and backing band the .357’s.
A collection of originals of covers, the themes are pretty familiar: outlaws, gambling, fighting, etc., but youâ€™d be disappointed if he sang about anything else. The only downside is the length. Coming in at just eight songs, Jennings leaves us wanting more. The cover of Creamâ€™s â€œWhite Roomâ€ is worth skipping, but Jenningsâ€™ canâ€™t be blamed, as itâ€™s not exactly a great song to begin with. However, â€œOutlaw Shit,â€ â€œAinâ€™t Livinâ€™ Long Like Thisâ€ and â€œLonesome Onâ€™ry and Meanâ€ are all worth the price of the CD alone. With Johnny Cash and Waylon already gone, Willie and Kristofferson are the only musicians left saving country music from irrelevancy.
Top Tracks: Outlaw Shit, Ainâ€™t Livinâ€™ Long Like This and Lonesome Onâ€™ry and Mean
Waylon Jennings & The 357â€™s – Waylon Forever (CD) / 2008 Vagrant / 8 tracks / www.waylonforever.com