Shooter Jennings

Shooter Jennings
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Don't let Shooter Jennings fool you. Sure, he rocks. He's lean and wiry, with tattoos snaking up his arms his mother's name on one, a gun on the other and a crimson stud gleaming in one ear. He's played sold-out shows at the Viper Room and the Roxy. He's subbed for Axl Rose onstage twice with Guns N' Roses. But look a little closer. Underneath that gun are the letters CBCS, for "country boy can survive." That earring turns out to be an eagle silhouette spreadwinged into the letter "W" an icon known by anyone who has listened to and loved the original outlaw, Waylon Jennings. That same icon is etched onto Shooter's stomach, but the one in his ear is even more special. "My dad got his ear pierced when he was I swear to God sixty, because he wanted to be like me," the younger Jennings explains. "This was the earring he wore and I'm wearing it now." If that's not enough to make it clear that bloodlines run deep from father to son, then check out Shooter's debut album, PUT THE O BACK IN COUNTRY. The passion on "Southern Comfort," scraped raw from the walls of some backwoods church the guitars on "Daddy's Farm," stacked, harmonized and slathered in deep-fried soul "4th of July," a crank-it-up summer celebration sweetened by a sprinkling of George Jones the treadshredding, back-road, hairpin spin of "Busted in Baylor County" and, above all, "Put the 'O' Back in Country," which jabs a finger in the eye of everything that's wrong with America's music today Hoss, it's country music, the way it ought to be alive with blood and thunder, spit and spirit and Southern soul. Waylon fought this battle in his own way, back in the day. But the sun has sunk and the shadows have spread deeper across country music since then. And as cowboy poseurs roam this dim and dreary land, Shooter sets it ablaze with an affirmation that country music real country music is back. And this time it's not going away. "The main thing I want people to understand is that I'm a country artist," Shooter says. "Sure, there's rock in there. I've played a lot of rock & roll. I take a lot from it. But it's country music. And I'm going to push it as far as I can because it's that important." "I'm rollin' like a freight train, comin' straight at you/I'm playin' hillbilly music, like I was born to do/You know, it ain't country music you've been listenin' to." "Put the 'O' Back in Country" Waylon Albright Jennings was born rollin'. The only child of Waylon Jennings and Jessi Colter, he lived his first few years in a crib on his parents' tour bus. "I thought everybody's family was like mine," he remembers. "We'd check out of hotels and travel all night. Songwriting, shows, stage setups, the band, the crew, the bus, the trucks all that stuff was normal. And I loved it. To this day I sleep better on the bus than anywhere else." Above all, there was the music though, strange as it seems, Shooter never thought of it as something he himself would ever do. "I remember hearing Dad's band," he says. "They were always great. I loved the way those shows felt, with the colored lights coming on. I can still really see him onstage, starting 'Luckenbach, Texas.' Night after night, I'd watch from the wings. But I never put two and two together, like, 'Maybe I'll get older and do this too.'" Without thinking about it much, Shooter started making music anyway. By age five he was playing drums. Between tours, back in Nashville, he took piano lessons, didn't like them, stopped, then started teaching himself and enjoying it more. He picked up his guitar at fourteen and hasn't put it down since. He and his dad recorded a few things together when they happened to have some microphones set up and the tape recorder plugged in. Then at sixteen he discovered rock & roll. Driven by a sound he heard coming together in his head something like Lynyrd Skynyrd mutating into Guns N' Roses Shooter left a couple of years later to seek his fortunes in L.A. "I had to get out of Nashville because I didn't feel it was my place at the time," he explains. "I wanted to get out while I was young. I wanted to play rock, and if I'd tried to do that in Nashville a lot of expectations would have been laid on me. I wasn't comfortable with that, so after I got out of high school, I was gone." In L.A., Shooter assembled a band and named it Stargunn. For six or seven years they tore up the local clubs, built a rabid following, earned raves from the local music press but something was wrong. "I loved rock," he explains. "I loved its 'f-you' attitude. But that Hollywood thing started to get to me. The more I went to all these crazy Paris Hilton parties, the more I was like, 'Man, this sucks!' I felt like everybody I'd known back in Nashville was looking at me like I was some big Hollywood asshole. I was posing as a rocker a country guy trying to be something he wasn't." As this sank in, Shooter remembered one of the many lessons of life his father had passed down to him. "The most important thing he ever said to me was, 'Don't ever try to be like anybody else, because you ain't never gonna be.' Then one day I was trying to describe what I wanted in this one song, and I said something about David Alan Coe, and everybody was like, 'Who?' That's when I realized that about 75 percent of my story wouldn't work with this band." On March 30, 2003, Shooter dissolved Stargunn and went to New York City to spend some time with his girlfriend and sort out what he wanted to do next. It took just a few weeks for Fate to show up, as it often does, with an opportunity, in the form of an invitation to play at the House of Blues in May. "I was certainly not ready," he remembers, "but I said yes just to inspire my ass to get a band together and try. We did that show, and it wasn't terrible, but it was enough to pump me up and get me to start writing the songs I wanted to write." Once he had his material together, Shooter went back to L.A., found some musicians who could connect to his true, new sound, dubbed them the 357s, and locked himself into a studio with them. Six weeks later they emerged with Put the O Back in Country, a set of rambunctious country that leaves no doubt of where Shooter comes from and where he's going. "In country music I feel completely free to do what I want to do," he insists. "I still get off to a lot of what's going on in rock the White Stripes are great and so is Velvet Revolver. I almost feel like real rock & roll is more present in country than it is in rock. You wouldn't hear 'Keep Your Hands to Yourself' on rock radio now. It'd be on country radio, because you can't bullshit country fans; they know authentic music when they hear it. And that's what I'm out to do." Not only that Shooter does it with a sound that's nourished by tradition, that acknowledges his family, and yet is entirely his own. "In my head, I still wish I sounded like a Waylon record from 1978," he laughs. "But I know I sound like myself. I guess that comes from finally doing what I want, even though I'm embracing my heritage too. That's important in country music. Somebody asked me once if it's hard living in my father's shadow. Hell, no it's great! I love my father's music. In fact, I want a Waylon song on my next record. But PUT THE O BACK IN COUNTRY is all me, coming out fast, balls to the wall." Shooter is already on his way, a shooting star on the rise. His duet with Hank Williams, Jr. was a highlight of CMT's Outlaws special in the fall of 2004. "Please Carry Me Home," which he wrote and recorded with his mother for the anthology Music Inspired by the Passion of the Christ, moved Todd Sterling of Country Review to observe that "Shooter has the same soulfulness in his voice as his late father." Meanwhile, his big-screen debut, playing his father opposite Joaquin Phoenix's Johnny Cash, promises to be a highlight of next year's biopic WALK THE LINE. All well and good, but no matter where Shooter Jennings'instincts lead him, PUT THE O BACK IN COUNTRY points right to the heart of who he is. "My whole statement is about the music," he insists. "It's about not being afraid to cross any boundaries. It's about freedom. And I know that the people in that little place between New York and L.A. called America will come, as long as the music is real."
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03/20/2009 - Shooter Jennings Shot Down Velvet Revolver - Read More
03/11/2009 - Shooter Jennings best of coming - Read More
08/28/2008 - Shooter Jennings is a country boy at heart  - Read More
06/27/2008 - Shooter Jennings hits a bullseye at The Beachland Ballroom - Read More
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Average Rating : 0              Total Reviews: 198

Shooter Jennings  03/29/2006            
I saw Shooter in Flagstaff, AZ and it was badass. Perfect mix of rock and country. Electric Rodeo is good too. Can't wait til Shooter at the Wormy Dog on April 8. I recommend checkin out his show- It's a hell of a time.
Shooter Jennings  03/29/2006            
Danny Hybner
Just saw Shooter at Gruene Hall and I have to say it was awesome.Can't wait for the new album.Will definitely pick it up the day it comes out.
Shooter Jennings  03/22/2006            
MikeMc - Houston
OMFG! Just finished listening to the whole CD "Put The 'O' Back In Country"......great blend of soul, country, rock and blues. It is rare to find a CD good enough to just put in the player and hit play! Can't wait to get "Electric Rodeo" - just in time to see Shooter at the Meridian on 4/5! Can't wait to see him live!! Highly recommed this CD for any fan of music...not just country music fan!!
Shooter Jennings  03/16/2006            
Country Girl
WOW, what can I say? 4th of July just sums it up. I haven't heard a better written song and a better performed song. I went to his concert on February 25th at the Shrine Mosque in Springfield, MO and only came to see him. I know Dierks Bentley was performing also, but I literally just came to see him. I loved his performance. That 4th of July song is very special to my heart. I actually saw his music video for it and fell in love with him and the song. He adds his own personal style to the lyrics and his voice is to die for. I introduced it to my sister and we both fell in love with it. She went away to college this year and everytime I listen to it, I think of her and remember all the times we, sisters, have loved, laughed, and shared with our COUNTRY music! My idol has always been Garth Brooks, [stills is:)!]but Shooter added a different style of country music and reminds me of what I am. I rock out with friends and actusally my aunt, and I still love listening to Garth Brooks, Waylon Jennings, JOHNNY CASH, and others, but I definitely will never stop loving Shooter. I actaully think he's hot, but you know, the music is what's important here! :)
Shooter Jennings  03/16/2006            
Country Girl
Shooter Jennigs made a huge hit with me and many others when he out his first cd out ~ O Back In Country. I personally am in LOVE with him and the song ~ "4th of July" I can't wait for his Electric Rodeo CD to come out and I am 100% sure, millions of others will be lining up to buy this long-awaited cd
Shooter Jennings  03/14/2006            
Rock n Roll Cowboy
This album is 10 times better than his first one! It's apparent Shooter is trying to bring music back to what it used to be. Picture Waylon Jennings crossed with Lynyrd Skynyrd(Ronnie Van Zant), and Hank Williams Jr and that's what this sounds like. It's pure hard driving southern rock infused -traditional country. There's rockers like "Electric Rodeo" "Black Magick", twangy country songs like "Aviators" and "The Song Is Still Slipping Away", he sounds kinda like his dad on "Some Rowdy Women", and on the Skynyrdish-Waylon stomp "Little White Lines". "Gone To Carolina" the slower rocker is my favorite. He even covers Hank Jr.s "Living Proof" which is a song he can probably relate to. All in all you can't go wrong with this one! A must have! Waylon must be smiling down from heaven with a big ol' Texas grin!
Shooter Jennings  03/10/2006            
Mike U
I Just heard all tracks of this soon to be released CD on CMT website. Fantastic!! I was really drawn to Alligator Chomp with it's cajun southern rock influence. There was not a bad song on the entire CD. Shooter is definately staking his own claim and in his own way!!
Shooter Jennings  03/02/2006            
Just finished listening to the advance of this record. It'll be one of the must haves of 2006. "Aviators" may be the best country song written in the last 20 years.
Shooter Jennings  02/12/2006            
love it
Shooter Jennings  01/10/2006            
Can Yall give this guy a break? He has some big shoes to follow, and doesn't have to do it the same way...I mean GOD BLESS WAYLON, but why can't he make his own sound? He aint tryin to follow his daddy's footsteps, he's still young and has a lot of potential. And as for him playin his daddy in "Walk the Line," no one else deserves to play him, but his kin. If anyone deserves a movie, it's Waylon! I love CASH, but Waylon wrote way more songs and was part of the original Outlaw Movement with Willie. God Bless Johhny, but if this is "Lonestar Music" then down in TEXAS, along with Bob Wills, Waylon is still the KING!!!!
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