ALBUM REVIEW: Billy Joe Shaver - Everybody's Brother

On "Everybody's Brother," Billy Joe Shaver sings: "If you don't love Jesus, go to hell." This is certainly a fitting sentiment for the country gospel themed album titled "Everybody's Brother" which features Shaver on his own and with country music luminaries such as Johnny Cash, Tanya Tucker, John Anderson, Kris Kristofferson and Marty Stuart.
Even though Shaver has some powerful duet partners on the album, it is Billy Joe Shaver's solo performance of his classic "When I Get My Wings" that still sends a shiver down the spine. And the aforementioned and rocking "If You Don't Love Jesus" also shows that Shaver is still an outlaw at heart.

No one ever said life was easy for Billy Joe Shaver. He lost a few fingers in a lumber mill accident. Since then, he has had more family and personal issues than virtually any of his contemporaries.
The song "No Earthly Good" resonates with its strong lyrics and confident yet vulnerable performances by Shaver and Kris Kristofferson. Shaver's wife and mother were lost in 1999 to cancer, and his son died of a heroin overdose a few months later. So you can feel Billy Joe Shaver's true emotions about these loved ones come through as he sings about the promised land. For instance, the contemplative "To Be Loved By A Woman" is a heartwrenching ode to his beloved Brenda.

Billy Joe Shaver has created and crafted a full album with no filler and not one bad or mediocre song on the entire album. There is no doubt that "Everybody's Brother" will retain its relevance as a gospel-tinged country masterpiece and a benchmark in the legendary carrer of Billy Joe Shaver.

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