photo: Jim McGuire
by: Dan Armonaitis
The opening track on Billy Joe Shaver’s latest album, “Long in the Tooth,” says it all.
The song, “Hard to Be an Outlaw,” bemoans the fact that artists from the 75-year-old Shaver’s generation “ain’t wanted anymore” in a world in which mainstream country radio is dominated by pop-oriented younger acts.
On the recording, Shaver is joined by Willie Nelson, who also cut the song for his 2014 album, “Band of Brothers.” Notably, the two music legends performed the song together on “The Late Show with David Letterman” a few months ago.
Shaver, who will perform at 8 p.m. Friday at the Grey Eagle in Asheville, N.C., said he got the idea for the song while having a phone conversation with another singer-songwriter friend, Jackson Taylor.
“We were talking on the phone, and somehow I said, ‘You know, it’s hard to be an outlaw,’” Shaver said. “And he said, ‘Boy, you better write that.’ I can’t remember all the things we said, but I decided I would write it.
“And, so, I texted the title to Willie — me and Willie are pretty much the only ones over 70 that text — and he said, ‘You better write that quick.’ And I thought, ‘Oh (expletive), he’s gonna write it if I don’t.’ So, I jumped on it and wrote it.”
Billy Joe is performing in Ashville, NC on Friday, April 17th:
Want to go?
Who: Billy Joe Shaver with Caleb Caudle
When: 8 p.m. Friday
Where: The Grey Eagle, 185 Clingman Ave., Asheville, N.C.
Tickets: $17 in advance and $20 day of show
Info: 828-232-5800 or www.thegreyeagle.com
Read entire article and interview here: