It has been 40 years ago when Waylon Jennings launched “Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love).” It was a country number one and it even crossed over with pop audiences. Now, two modern- day men from Texas, Cody Jinks and Paul Cauthen, have paid their tribute with the help of Nik Lee and the Texas Gentlemen.
Chips Moman and Bobby Emmons wrote the song for Jinks and Cauthen’s version. It is recorded for Amazon Originals’ new Open Road Project. It is a 30-song playlist that covers classic songs. Other contributing artists include Walkmen’s Hamilton Leithauser, Son Volt, and Shawn Colvin, and a lot more. It’s a cut for the Modern Electric Recorders in Dallas, the home base for the Texas Gentlemen, who were the backing band on Cauthen’s 2016 LP My Gospel.
Recently, Jinks ad Cauthen also did a tribute for Chris Cornell. They performed Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun.” Their version was an eerie country dirge unlike “Luckenbach, Texas’” faithful rendition.
Cauthen sounded a lot like Jennings’ baritone voice as he takes the first verse then Jinks takes the second. What’s surprising was when Nik Lee sang similarly to Willie Nelson.
Listen to the song here.
“The first time Cody Jinks and I really got to hang out, we drank a bunch of wine and cut one of our favorite songs, ‘Luckenbach, Texas.’ Nik Lee is singing the third verse to really reign in the Willie part,” Cauthen tells Rolling Stone Country. At the end of the song, he ad libs a welcome announcement that references famous battles from Lone Star State history. “Remember the Alamo, remember Goliad,” he says. “If you want to feel freedom, come on down to Texas.”
Watch out for the streaming of Open Road on August 4th thru Amazon Music. Also, The Texas Gentlemen will be releasing their debut LP TX Jelly September 15th on New West Records.