Outlaw country singer songwriter Billy Joe Shaver has died.
His friend Connie Nelson says Shaver died today in Texas following a stroke.
Shaver wrote songs for Waylon Jennings, Bobby Bare, Kris Kristofferson, Tom T. Hall and Willie Nelson, and was among the original group of outlaws and maverick country singers in the ‘70s.
His big break came when Jennings recorded several of Shaver's songs for his 1973 album “Honky Tonk Heroes," which helped popularize the outlaw country genre. Shaver wrote songs that were covered by Elvis Presley, Patty Loveless, George Jones, Tex Ritter, Tennessee Ernie Ford and John Anderson.
Anderson had a No. 4 country hit with Shaver's “I'm Just an Old Chunk of Coal," and Johnny Rodriquez took Shaver's song, “I Couldn’t Be Me Without You," to No. 3 on the country chart. He wrote “Willie the Wandering Gypsy and Me" about Nelson.
Billy Joe Shaver was 81.
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