Best Tribute Band: The Outlaws

Waylon Jennings died of complications from diabetes more than a decade ago, but the country star’s music goes on because of tribute groups like The Outlaws who keep his spirit alive with rowdy versions of “Luckenbach, Texas” and “Good Ol’ Boys.” The Jennings-only pop-up version of Jeremy Manley’s band J.P. & the Geminis, the Outlaws perform about once or twice a month, with more than 80 Waylon tunes in their repertoire. “You’d be surprised how many Waylon fans there are in these parts,” says Manley, who studied orchestral composition at Pacific Lutheran University and whose forthcoming studio album was recorded with Jennings’ pedal steel player, Robby Turner. “It was supposed to be just a one-off kind of thing, but we kept getting phone calls that we should keep doing it.” It’s a good fit for Manley, who bears a striking resemblance to the deceased songwriter, leather vest, deep baritone, and all.

 
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