Billy Joe Shaver Returning With First Album in Six Years

(Radio.com) One of the outlaw era's legendary artists, Billy Joe Shaver, announced today that he will release his first new album in more than six years. Titled Long in the Tooth, the album was produced by Ray Kennedy and Gary Nicholson and features such illustrious guests as Willie Nelson, Leon Russell, Tony Joe White and Shawn Camp. The release date is set for Aug. 5.

Shaver may not be a household name, but he wrote and recorded many songs that are considered classics of the 1970s and '80s, including "Honky Tonk Heroes," "Old Five and Dimers Like Me," "I'm Just an Old Chunk of Coal" and "I Been to Georgia on a Fast Train." He's probably best known, though, as the writer behind nine of the ten songs on Waylon Jennings' landmark album Honky Tonk Heroes. Released in 1973, that collection of scrappy, stripped-down recordings signaled a change the sound and approach to making music in Nashville and the start of what became known as country music's 'outlaw' era.

Long in the Tooth is Shaver's first album since 2008′s Everybody's Brother. And Shaver isn't shy about sharing his thoughts on his latest achievement. "This is the best album I've ever done," he said in a press release. "It's just dangerously good. I expect it to change things and turn things around the way Honky Tonk Heroes did."

Rolling Stone premiered a new song from the album, "Hard to Be an Outlaw." The western-flavored song is a duet with Willie Nelson, and it takes a few unveiled potshots at the current state of country music.

"Some superstars nowadays get too far off the ground," Shaver sings in the song, "singing about the backroads they never have been down."

"They go and call it country, but that ain't the way it sounds," echoes Nelson on the following verse. "It's enough to make a renegade want to terrorize the town." more on this story

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Copyright Radio.com/CBS Local - Excerpted here with permission.

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