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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The tale of a survivor and an innovator
This book is as colorful as Waylon's best songs, with an earthy reality that you can smell, taste and feel in your gut. He didn't have an easy life and the contrast between the good times and the hard times is evident. The straightforward yet discriptive writing makes it easy to feel you were there when it happened. But it's never easy to bring about change, which is...
Published on June 23, 2000 by Mad Dog

versus
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Bad quality
A lot of the pages fell out all at random spots when i opened the book from supposed brand new condition
Published 2 months ago by Cory Maneval


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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The tale of a survivor and an innovator, June 23, 2000
This book is as colorful as Waylon's best songs, with an earthy reality that you can smell, taste and feel in your gut. He didn't have an easy life and the contrast between the good times and the hard times is evident. The straightforward yet discriptive writing makes it easy to feel you were there when it happened. But it's never easy to bring about change, which is what his life has been all about. Some may think he brags too much but the truth is he has plenty to be proud of. I bought the book because I wanted to see how he described his time with Buddy Holly and the evolution of outlaw country and found it to be interesting, illuminating and at times, surprising. Along the way, I gained a whole new level of respect for Jessi and was reminded again how important it is for a man to have a strong woman.
It seems that all autobiographies drag at one point or another but that's just a minor issue here. If I could, I'd give this 4 and 1/2 stars, only because I'm stingy with my 5 star recommendations. My guess is that, if you like the man's music, you'll enjoy reading his story.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like Waylon, this book is gritty, honest and smart., March 4, 1998
By 
duke66@iserv.net (Wyoming, Michigan) - See all my reviews
Waylon Jennings recorded an album in 1987, which he referred to as an "audiobiography". The album was "A Man Called Hoss", and it was, according to Waylon, "The story of my life, before somebody gets it wrong". It was a good idea, and a fine album. But "Waylon: An Autobiography" really gets the job done.
Waylon's fans have always known about his rich sense of humor and storytelling abilities. These are reflected amply through his music. This book, co-written by Lenny Kaye, reveals his inner depth, as well. His friendships, loves, heartbreaks, addictions and many triumphs. The greatest triumph of Waylon's life is arguably his long and loving marriage to Jessi Colter. Colter, a successful recording artist in her own right, wrote one of Waylon's biggest hits, "Storms Never Last". And Waylon should know. He's weathered many a storm, with the help of his friends, his family, and his soulmate, Jessi. Read the book, and hear it all in WAYLON's words.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If You Read Only One Book....., May 25, 2002
By 
Teresa Bassham (Iron City, Tennessee United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Waylon: An Autobiography (Mass Market Paperback)
If you read only one book in your life, you HAVE to read this one. I read it several years ago and just recently read it again. I've read a lot of biographies, and this one is the most sincere and most entertaining one yet. This book shows just how much today's country singers should thank their lucky stars that Waylon Jennings EVER came along. You can tell how very much he loved Jessi and his kids. READ IT!!!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Country Music's Rebel, January 15, 2010
Waylon Jennings' autobiography stretches from his birth to 1996.
Mr. Jennings shares his childhood memories of a large family living in humble, small houses. Like a lot of country music stars of that era, he came from a poor family.
He wrote about some of his heroes of country music- Hank Williams, Sr. and Ernest Tubbs.

Most everyone that knows who Waylon Jennings was is familiar with his connection to Buddy Holly. Waylon doesn't disappoint the readers that are curious to read about life on the road with Buddy Holly. If not for Buddy Holly and his confidence in a young Waylon Jennings, he may not have the singing career later.

Another area of interest was Waylon's career as a disc jockey.

He doesn't gloss over the wide-spread use of pills in Nashville and his personal use of drugs during his career.

This book also details some of Waylon Jennings' experiences with the record labels and other management types in Nashville and on the road. He got ripped off like a lot of other music artists.

It was interesting to read Waylon's take on the difference between playing in a studio vs. playing live in a honky-tonk and his preference for playing live.

He shared his view of the "Nashville Sound" and the CMA.
On the Nashville Sound he wrote this on page 176-
"Nashville was just too insular, too caught up in itself."
The reader gets a first-hand glimpse at why Mr. Jennings became a part of "Outlaw Country".

Some of his shared experiences with his contemporaries were very humorous.
Overall, this is a good autobiography of a true country rebel who played a part in changing country music and the monumental role his wife Jessi played in his overcoming years of drug addiction.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lone Wolf..., September 20, 2007
This review is from: Waylon: An Autobiography (Mass Market Paperback)
Waylon Jennings gave up his seat to Richie Valens in that fateful plane crash that claimed the lives of Valens, Buddy Holly and the big Bopper. It would not be the last time he skirted death. A fact filled and story filled book that reads like a Waylon Jennings song filled with bravado, heart and longing. One of the original "outlaws" of country music Waylon was above all else his own man and along with Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson formed the legendary "Highwaymen". This temperamental artist tells of his many travails with his personal demons and the love of his life, Jessi Colter. Good stuff.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WAYLON RULES!, November 17, 2004
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This review is from: Waylon: An Autobiography (Mass Market Paperback)
If you are a fan of Ol Waylon! This book covers in detail all that you need to know about Waylon. I laughed and Cried reading that book not because I am huge fan of Waylon. But, also because the stories were well written and to the best of my knowledge looked like Waylon was honest when he wrote the book.

I only hope Jessi Colter write a book as well. that also would be very intersting, Seeing the story from her point of view, and learning about her as an artist and a wonderful human being.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WAYLON PENNINGS, September 26, 2004
By 
STEPHEN T. McCARTHY (a Mensa-donkey in Phoenix, Airheadzona.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Waylon: An Autobiography (Mass Market Paperback)
I have an eclectic taste in music, but a person could count on 4 fingers and 2 thumbs how many Country-Western performers I really enjoy. I'd put OL' WAYLON on the forefinger. If his name is on your forefinger too, then you are sure to find the AUTOBIOGRAPHY of WAYLON JENNINGS worthwhile.

WAYLON reveals his life story here in great detail. It is an extensive journey from his cotton-pickin' youth, to his struggling honky-tonk musical beginnings, to his lowdown dirty daze at the top of the Country charts & the bottom of his drug addiction, and finally to his mellowed state as a blissfully married man and the grandpappy of Outlaw Music.

What I most appreciated was the informal, grammatically-incorrect, down-home conversational style of the writing. I suspect that Lenny Kaye did little more than insert proper punctuation and maybe prod the old cowboy from time to time.

The book is sure to appeal to anyone who wants a peek at the behind-the-scenes maneuvering in the Nashville Country Music world of the 1960s & '70s. It also paints a picture of the last days of BUDDY HOLLY and Waylon's association with the Rock legend shortly before the unfortunate airplane crash that took his life. It is therefore, a must-read for any hardcore HOLLY fans.

Being a religious man, I didn't care for the profanity which seemed unnecessary, and especially the taking of The Lord's Name in vain (which always affects me like fingernails on a chalkboard.) But, hey, it IS Waylon being Waylon.

The story is in turn raunchy, touching, and (as anyone who ever saw Waylon perform live would guess) QUITE FUNNY! One minute he's full O'himself, reveling in his old-tyme bravado, and the next minute he's got you laughing out loud with some self-deprecating observation.

WAYLON SEZ :
Littlefield, Texas is "so flat your dog could run off and you could watch him go for three days." (-page 7);

"Of all the religions I've run into, the Church of Christ has probably got it wronger than anybody." (-page 13);

He was expelled from music class in high school for "lack of musical ability." (-page 33);

"Like all Southern people," he was "scared of the devil and scared of God equally." (-page 70);

Guitars are "a lot like women. You can touch one of them in the dark and know she ain't yours; or you're with the right one." (-page 105);

"I still cringe whenever I hear myself singing Hoyt Axton's 'NEVER BEEN TO SPAIN.' It sounded like I'd never even been to Cleveland." (-page 184);

Around 1976, Jessi Colter, "WAYLON'S LAST WIFE" - as she describes herself - (what a cutie!) began seeking WAYLON'S deliverance from drug addiction. "Lord," her prayer used to go, "watch over Ol' Waylon 'cause he's so dumb." (-page 299);

And Waylon's first experience in a New York delicatessen is not to be missed!

But on page 101, he says of Barbara Rood, who would become his second wife, "EVEN IN THE GLAMOR TOWN OF PHOENIX, SHE STOOD OUT LIKE A LIGHTHOUSE IN THE FOG." Huh? Glamor town? PHOENIX?! A city where there are more pickup trucks than teeth?! Oh well, the man DID say that he used to do a lot of drugs.

A fellow reviewer wrote, "If you read only one book in your life, you HAVE to read this one." I'm not NEARLY so enthusiastic. I'll bet that if I racked my brain really, really hard for a really, really long time, I might be able to come up with one, or maybe even two books that are better and more important than WAYLON's AUTOBIOGRAPHY. But yes, the chances are that you would enjoy at least a fair portion of it quite a bit. The ol' boy was an American Original.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You won't regret this book, hoss..., February 13, 2011
"Waylon: An Autobiography" is a very honest, straight shooting account of the life of Waylon Jennings. I found it to be an interesting read that's well written.

This book covers Waylon's life all the way from a dirt floor in Texas to the 1990s. I found the part about his time with Buddy Holly fascinating. I always heard Waylon was supposed to be on the plane, but I never knew the profound impact missing the flight had on him. That chapter alone was worth the price of the book. It takes us through the glory days of the '70s and the outlaw years all the way through the struggles of the '80s. Toward the end of the book, he discusses The Highwaymen at great length. Throughout, it is honest, frank, and pure Waylon.

This is a book worth reading for anybody that's a country music fan. It's well done, and I enjoyed it thoroughly.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Revealing, January 15, 2007
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This is an interesting book for country music enthusiasts as it provides details reaching back to the Bob Wills days, the Buddy Holley times, the horrible drug use in Nashville and some of those involved. I read it with great interest and I keep it handy on my bookshelf.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Waylon, An Autobiography, April 2, 2009
A "must read" for any Waylon Jennings fan who wants to hear 'the way it was', straight from the ol' Hoss's mouth! Goes into the background scenes of how he made his music his way and the forces that conspired against him that nearly caused him to forsake the music business. A no holds barred reflection of an honest man who may just not have been as "rowdy" as you might think. Waylon spends considerable energy focusing on his youth, bashfulness, friendships, relationship to his family, and the extreme loyalty and loss he experienced through the years as a result of losing friends and being abused by them (take that Merle Haggard!). All in all, Waylon seemed to have made peace with the past and laid out some very important lessons for those that will follow in his wake. Shooter, if you're listening, you just keep at it and make your Daddy proud... we'll be watchin'! This look at Waylon's life has something for everyone, regardless of your tastes or preferences. If there were to be only one message that I could recommend from this book it would be something along the lines of this; A great love can't be experienced without being willing to expose yourself to great pain. In spite of the pain Waylon experienced, it was only a temporary situation that allowed him to experience that which we all seek, a great love. Waylon's love for Jesse is firmly established in this autobiography. He was a fortunate man who willingly took his share of bumps in order to live life on his terms; he loved Jesse, he loved his family, and he loved his music. Be it known that even with all the glitz and stardom he experienced in his life, he remained that humble, just a little backward, West Texas kid whose personna was the only thing that became bigger than life. Waylon seems to go out of his way to avoid mentioning the charitable things he did for folks... sick kids, folks down on their luck and such. Only very minimal references in this book. A true, humble approach by an overall humble, honest, and loving man.
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Waylon: An Autobiography
Waylon: An Autobiography by Waylon Jennings (Mass Market Paperback - March 1, 1998)
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