Sound Advice: Shooter Jennings with Jason Boland and Julie Roberts (Dec. 15)

Son of Waylon and dynamic artist in his own right comes to Southgate House Revival for an "Acoustic Song Swap" with Jason Boland.

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click to enlarge Shooter Jennings - Photo: Hunter Nessley
Photo: Hunter Nessley
Shooter Jennings

It may have occurred to Shooter Jennings relatively early in life that it would be nearly impossible to fill his father’s musical shoes or emerge from that long cultural shadow without finding his own true identity first. Waylon Jennings was a Country music original, and his son has found myriad opportunities to exponentially expand that originality, even when he’s worked directly with his impossibly famous father. Pretty good for the kid whose crib was a fixture on Waylon’s tour bus and who played percussion with his father’s band as a teenager.

After growing up on the road, Shooter recorded an album with Waylon in 1996 when he was just 17 that showed his stylistic diversity and maturity and his father’s fearlessness. Fenixon was part Alternative Rock anthemics and part Industrial screed, and the polar opposite of everything Waylon had ever done. Shooter finally released the full album on his own label in 2014, nearly 20 years after its creation.

In 2001, Shooter relocated to Los Angeles and assembled Stargunn, a Glam/Hard Rock hybrid band that quickly became an L.A. sensation. But even after scoring a track on the Waylon Jennings tribute I’ve Always Been Crazy and getting placement in a couple of movies, Shooter dismantled Stargunn in 2003, the year after his father’s passing, and embarked on his solo career.

In 2005, Shooter released his debut solo set, Put the “O” Back in Country, and later that year, he appeared as his father in the Oscar-nominated Johnny Cash biopic Walk the Line. In the subsequent dozen years, Shooter has branched off in numerous musical directions and found fascinating new outlets for his restless creative muse. Since his debut, Shooter has dropped eight other studio releases, including the Black Ribbons concept album and tributes to George Jones and Giorgio Moroder, as well as four live albums. In 2005, he began Shooter Jennings’ Electric Rodeo, a weekly radio program on Sirius XM’s Outlaw Country channel, and since then he has launched his own record label and become an in-demand producer, as well as an outspoken critic of the Nashville Country music machine and modern artists who hijack the “Outlaw Country” tag.

Shooter’s current tour is his second acoustic circuit with singer/songwriter Jason Boland, whose album he produced in 2013. The tour is being billed as an “Acoustic Song Swap,” so there is likely no set list and no clear format other than to go out and let whatever happens happen. Which sounds like Shooter Jennings’ informal blueprint from the start.


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