Watch New Trailer for Epic Country Music Documentary Series, ‘They Called Us Outlaws’

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

There’s a new documentary series in town.

Indeed, fans can check out the first preview of the new epic documentary series, The Called Us Outlaws, below.

Armadillo World Studios’ upcoming six-chapter, twelve-hour documentary on the history and legacy of the Outlaw country-rock movement of Cosmic Cowboys and Honky Tonk Heroes has been unveiled today (Aug. 30). Written and directed by Austin filmmaker Eric Geadelman, and executive produced by Grammy Hall of Fame recipient and “Original Outlaw” Jessi Colter, the new series should be a hit with country fans and music historians.

A decade in the making and currently in the final stages of production, the independent project will feature over 100 interviews and include numerous Country Music Hall of Fame and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame members, plus luminaries across multiple genres and generations, including Emmylou Harris, Roger McGuinn, Bobby Bare, Charlie McCoy, Al Kooper, Chris Gantry, Michael Martin Murphey, Billy F. Gibbons, Marcia Ball and Freda and The Firedogs’ Bobby Earl Smith, Delbert McClinton, The Flatlanders (Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Butch Hancock), Ray Wylie Hubbard, Jeff Hanna, Larry Gatlin, Willis Allan Ramsey, The Lost Gonzo Band’s Gary P. Nunn & “Cosmic Bob” Livingston, Ray Benson, Rodney Crowell, Steve Earle, Robert Earl Keen and “The Outlaw Sweetheart” Kimmie Rhodes. 

The docu-series also featured interviews with a number of heroes from the era now gone too soon, including Guy Clark, Jerry Jeff Walker, Billy Joe Shaver, Leon Russell, Tom T. Hall, Charlie Daniels, Richie Albright, and Fred Foster.

In addition, the footage includes dozens of scenes and performances with next-generation troubadours and rockers, performers, and producers, including Shooter Jennings, Miranda Lambert, Eric Church, Margo Price, Jason Aldean, Chris Shiflett, Holly Williams, Jewel, Tyler Childers, Nathaniel Rateliff, Wesley Schultz (The Lumineers), Jon Randall, Rhett Miller, Jessi Alexander, Brett James, Randy Rogers, Parker McCollum, Lee Ann Womack, Bruce Robison, Kelly Willis, Gary Allan, Charley Crockett, Aubrie Sellers, John R. Miller, William Beckman, Brooks & Dunn, Tony Brown, Allen Reynolds, and Frank Liddell. Country Music Hall of Fame member and legendary RCA head Jerry Bradley and Big Machine Label Group founder Scott Borchetta.

New York Times Best Selling author and Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey testifies to the cultural impact of the Outlaw era today and the necessity to carry it forward. They Called Us Outlaws also features a treasure trove of rare and never-before-seen performance footage and never-heard recordings from many of the featured artists’ personal archives; and, in particular, presents concerts from Austin’s legendary Armadillo World Headquarters.

“What began as a single, indie film—3,707 days ago—on so-called ‘outlaw country’ somehow became a twelve-hour motion picture document of an era, that provides portraits of a multitude of remarkable artists, songwriters, musicians and producers—some well-known and others more obscure—who had (and have) the courage to follow what’s inside themselves…regardless of industry pressures and societal norms,” says Eric Geadelmann,

“The historical and cultural significance of their stories are echoed by a multitude of current singer-songwriters that embody the independent ethos of the ‘do it their way’ heroes,” he continues. “Along with the tremendous team at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and their partnership during its Outlaws & Armadillos exhibit, as well as a group of like-hearted and like-minded financiers from Austin and Nashville, I don’t believe any of this would be possible without Jessi Colter. Her soulfulness and spirituality served as our guide—she’s the heartbeat of this film series.”

Says Colter, “If you want to know what really happened in the ’70s in Nashville and Austin, take heed. They Called Us Outlaws is full of ‘underground’ untold stories, and equations you must conclude for yourself. Just hang on to see true American music happen. Roll it boys…”

“This film series merely uses ‘outlaw’ as a way into the larger story of what it means to be an artist, and the importance of carrying legacies forward to enable the spirit of the renegade troubadour to ‘live forever’—as Billy Joe Shaver wrote and sang,” added Kelly Magelky.

“Eric’s passion and Herculean efforts to document this important piece of Americana were key in telling the multi-layered story of Austin and Nashville through our exhibit,” noted Kyle Young, chief executive officer for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. “The interviews and performance footage in They Called Us Outlaws are historical gold and include invaluable commentary by central figures we’ve sadly lost in recent years such as Billy Joe Shaver, Guy Clark, Fred Foster, Tom T. Hall, Jerry Jeff Walker and more. We are pleased that these resources will be preserved in the museum’s Frist Library and Archives and available to future generations of scholars and researchers.”

For more info on THEY CALLED US OUTLAWS, please visit HERE.

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