Several country singers can't really stand the slick, Nashville influence on their music and several sub-genres were developed. Today, we have a merging of two of them, the Outlaw style of West Texas and the Bakersfield Sound. Willie Nelson really doesn't need any intro and if you look back at last week's tune, you can get the back story on the Bakersfield Sound and its native son, Merle Haggard.
Merle's a real outlaw. When Johnny Cash was singing at San Quentin back in the 60's, Haggard was in the audience, doing time for burglary. When they met later in life, Haggard told Cash he was there that day and Johnny told him that he didn't remember him being in the band. Haggard informed him that he was an audience member.
Anyway, today's song is one where I make everybody hush when its turn on the playlist comes up in the car. No one really knows what it is about, something to do with bandits and the men who turn on them. Whole essays have been written about the meaning...Tim did one in college. We'll put it on this week because it's a great song, great road song, and...since we're in Ohio this week...spends a good time during the lyrics in Cleveland (the rest of the time in Mexico).
Enjoy one of my favorite songs, Pancho And Lefty written by the late Townes Van Zandt and performed by Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard.