Outlaw: Celebrating the Music of Waylon Jennings


All backstage pictures taken by Rob Bleetstein, during Jody Denberg’s interviews for the forthcoming DVD documenting the Waylon tribute concert.

Head over to Rolling Stone for a great photo slideshow of the event. Scroll down to see a setlist from the concert.

Tribute concerts are often a mixed-bag, but “Outlaw: Celebrating The Music Of Waylon Jennings” was a solid, heartfelt affair from start to finish. Maybe it was the presence of Waylon’s widow Jessi Colter and their son Shooter Jennings, or maybe it was the fact that everyone on the bill had a personal relationship with Jennings – or at least his music, but this show, with about two dozen musicians giving it up for the man nicknamed “Hoss” was an emotional tour de force beginning with Bobby Bare’s opening number to the closing all-hands-on-deck finale of “Luckenbach, Texas”.

With a band that included Waylon’s longtime drummer Richie Albright as well as his one-time steel guitar player Robby Turner – along with musical director/bassist Don Was, guitarist Buddy Miller and harp master Mickey Raphael – Jennings’ catalog of hits and deep cuts were brought to life with reverence AND gusto. See the setlist (below) for the entire rundown, but whether you attended the gig or not, you’ll want to catch it when it is released on DVD in the near future.


Willie Nelson likened his relationship with his duet partner Waylon Jennings as being like “a marriage”. When asked here what word came to mind when someone said “Waylon” he simply smiled with a twinkle and said “Jennings”.



Lee Ann Womack – pictured here in front of the Waylon logo backdrop – was another native Texan on the bill whose shared memories of Waylon centered on her childhood.



Jamey Johnson – who amazingly filled the role of Johnny Cash during the second set’s closing version of Jimmy Webb’s composition “Highwayman” – stopped to chat with newcomer Chris Stapleton outside of the interview room. Stapleton admitted he was still catching his breath from playing Willie’s picnic!



Alison Krauss spoke softly backstage as she remembered how important Waylon’s music was to her during her upbringing, then stunned the crowd with her version of “Dreaming My Dreams” followed by a duet with Jamey Johnson.



One of Waylon’s “Highwaymen” bandmates, the legendary Kris Kristofferson said that in the company of the other members of the group he still wondered what he, a former studio janitor, was doing in such esteemed company!

Set List:

Set #1

1. Only Daddy That’ll Walk the Line – Bobby Bare

2. Whistlers and Jugglers – Shooter Jennings

3. Mona- Jessi Colter

4. Ain’t Living Long Like this – Chris Stapleton

5. Ride Me Down Easy – Lee Ann Womack

6. Yours Love – Lee Ann Womack & Buddy Miller

7. Memories of You and I – Strugill Simpson

8. The Wurlitzer Prize – Kacey Musgraves

9. Freedom to Stay – Jamey Johnson

10. Are You Sure Hank done It this Way – Robert Earl Keen

Set #2

1. I Do Believe – Kris Kristofferson & Jessi Colter

2. Storms Never Last -Kris Kristofferson & Jessi Colter

3. Rainy Day Woman – Ryan Bingham

4. Dreamin’ My Dreams – Alison Krauss

5. I Ain’t the One – Alison Krauss & Jamey Johnson

6. Honky Tonk Heroes – Toby Kieth

7. Lonesome, On’ry and Mean – Eric Church

8. Til I Gain Control Again – Willie Nelson

9. Mama Don’t Let you Babies Grow up To Be Cowboys – Wllie Nelson & Toby Keith

10 . My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys – Willie Nelson & Chris Stapleton

11. Goodhearted Woman – Willie Nelson & Bobby Bare

12. I Can Get Off On You – Willie Nelson & Sturgill Simpson

13. Highwayman – Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Shooter Jennings, & Jamey Johnson


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