Various The Music Inside: A Collaboration Dedicated To Waylon Jennings Vol. 1

As the guy who famously asked the musical question "Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way," it's hard to imagine that if Waylon Jennings were still around he'd take kindly to contemporary Nashville artists paying tribute to him. How ironic is it, then, that '80s Nashville shlockmeisters Alabama tackled that very song for this project. Aside from this curious choice, though, The Music Inside isn't the embarrassment it could have been. Jennings' tough-yet-smooth style is still the model for many new artists, and foremost among them, Jamey Johnson, turns in a fine rendition of "This Time." Otherwise, it's Waylon's old crony Kris Kristofferson who stands out most, singing "Rose In Paradise" as a duet with Patty Griffin. Not surprisingly, the best moment is hearing Waylon himself on the previously unreleased track "Go Down Rockin'," perhaps an underhanded trick to lure hardcore fans to buy this unnecessary collection. (Open Road)