Billy Joe Shaver/Bert D Newton: Mother Trucker

Bert David Newton is an Alabama born and bred singer/songwriter who fronted the popular roots Outlaw Country band The Skeeters for 10 years and now performs as The Bert David Newton Band. Newton’s travelled all over this land singing his songs and has even had chance to perform/record with his heroes. One of those bein’ Mr. Billy Joe Shaver. Which brings us to the song “Mother Trucker” written by Shaver and featured on The Skeeters album Easy For The Takin’  and a featured choice for Truckers Month here at Outlaw.

How did this collaboration come about?

“Years back we got the opportunity to open a show for Billy Joe at Smith’s Olde Bar  in Atlanta,”   recalls Newton. “It was quite a crazy night lookin’ back at it now. For several different reasons. We (The Skeeters) ended up playing the middle slot, between a group of kids and an unknown band at the time (now multiple Grammy winners) called The Kings Of Leon (which was their first gig, by the way) and Mr. Shaver, himself. All of us had a blast sharing the stage together.”

Bert David Newton & Billy Joe Shaver

It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Newton continues, “Billy Joe took a shining to us in a major way. He had already heard us record “Honey Chile” (a lost piece of art found on a reel to reel in a dusty box at a recording studio near Muscle Shoals). Our producer Johnny Sandlin found it and we had to put it on our first album. That night was also the one and only time we played “The Fighter”, a Kris Kristofferson song with references to Shaver’s should be status through the critics eye. He invited us out to Texas to open for him on his Freedom’s Child Tour. A dream and an honor for us all. After that ,we became close. He was my mentor and remains to be today. He’s a hell of a guy.”

Recording “Mother Trucker”:

“He flew out to Alabama, rented a room and a car and came to the studio to play a sackful of songs for us for our second album. I told him I wanted to sing one with him on the album. He was humbled, but said he didn’t want to do a love song together like Julio and Willie did ,(saying with a smile). Then he said ” How bout this?” And there it was for sure. “Mother Trucker” was the one for us hands down.”

She’s a lean, mean mother trucker

She got truck drivin’ in her soul

She’s a lean, mean mother trucker

Roll, mother trucker, roll 

LISTEN:

Newton adds, “Billy Joe is amazing. Talent-wise, friend-wise, character-wise, and legend-wise. We don’t know how lucky we are to be living in the time of Shaver. He’s the best. I love him, wholeheartedly.”

“Mother Trucker” is available HERE  for digital download.

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