The Highwaymen (country supergroup)
From left to right Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, and Willie Nelson, who formed the country music supergroup
|Also known as||Nelson, Jennings, Cash, Kristofferson|
|Genres||Country music (specifically Outlaw country)|
|Associated acts||Jimmy Webb|
|Past members||Johnny Cash
The Highwaymen were a Country music supergroup comprising four of the genre's biggest artists well known for their pioneering influence on the outlaw country subgenre: Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson. Active between 1985 and 1995, these four artists recorded three major label albums as The Highwaymen: two on Columbia Records and one for Liberty Records. Their Columbia works produced three chart singles, including the Number One "Highwayman" in 1985.
While not credited as the Highwaymen, between the years of 1997 and 1999, Nelson, Kristofferson, Cash, and Jennings also provided the voice and dramatization for the Louis L'Amour Collection, a four CD box set of seven Louis L'Amour Stories published by the HighBridge Company.
Besides the 4 members, only one recording vocal artist ever appeared on a Highwaymen recording, Johnny Rodriguez (Spanish vocal on 'Deportee', a Woody Guthrie cover, from "Highwayman").
Formed in 1985, the group did not have an official name when they released their first album on Columbia Records. The album, entitled Highwayman, was credited to "Nelson, Jennings, Cash, Kristofferson". The single "Highwayman", a Jimmy Webb cover, became a No. 1 country hit. Their cover of Guy Clark's "Desperados Waiting for a Train" reached the Top 20. (Clark is frequently referred to as "The Fifth Highwayman".) The album was produced by Chips Moman.
In 1990, the group reunited for a second effort, titled Highwayman 2, which reached No. 4 on the country album charts. The Lee Clayton-penned song "Silver Stallion" was the first single and made the country Top 40. The album was nominated for a Grammy for Best Country Vocal Collaboration. Highwayman 2 was produced, once again, by Moman. Six of the songs were written or co-written by members of the group.
The group's final release prior to Jennings' death in 2002 was 1995's Don Was-produced album The Road Goes on Forever (a Robert Earl Keen cover), and its single, "It Is What It Is". The four singers then returned to their solo careers. A tenth-anniversary edition of The Road Goes on Forever appeared in 2005, with several bonus tracks added as well as, in some versions, a DVD containing the music video for "It Is What It Is" and a documentary entitled Live Forever – In the Studio with the Highwaymen.
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions||Certifications
|The Road Goes On Forever||42||—||10||46||8||11|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart|
|1995||The Highwaymen Ride Again||Columbia|
|2005||Country Legends||DeLuxe Holland|
|2010||The Essential Highwaymen||Columbia|
|Year||Single||Peak chart positions||Album|
|"Desperados Waiting for a Train"||15||20||—|
|1990||"Silver Stallion"||25||21||—||Highwayman 2|
|1995||"It Is What It Is"||—||—||—||The Road Goes on Forever|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart|
|1990||"Silver Stallion"||Jon Small|
|1995||"It Is What It Is"||Lowe/Don Was|
- Highwaymen Live! (filmed in 1990 at the Nassau Coliseum, released in 1991 on VHS)
- On the Road Again (filmed in 1992 in Aberdeen, Scotland, released in 2003 on DVD)
- "The Highwaymen Album & Song Chart History – Country Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "The Highwaymen Album & Song Chart History – Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "Results – RPM – Library and Archives Canada – Country Albums". RPM. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "RIAA – Gold & Platinum – December 26, 2010: The Highwaymen certified albums". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved December 26, 2010.
- "The Highwaymen Album & Song Chart History – Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "Results – RPM – Library and Archives Canada – Country Singles". RPM. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "Results – RPM – Library and Archives Canada – Adult Contemporary". RPM. Retrieved December 11, 2010.