The fuss kicked off when Bryan said in an interview, "I'm not an outlaw country singer," adding, "I don't do cocaine and run around. So I'm not going to sing outlaw country."
He also said, “I think that people who want Merle, Willie and Waylon just need to buy Merle, Willie and Waylon.”
Those comments were met with widespread disapproval from many fans of outlaw country and specifically Jennings, who admittedly struggled with cocaine addiction for years. Kathy Pinkerman who is married to Jennings’ son Buddy posted a heated online rant directed at Bryan, saying in part, “You are a platinum, disrespecting, no singing, whining, grasping for media attention, a--hole.”
But Jennings’ widow, Jessi Colter, and his son Shooter Jennings feel very differently about the situation, and Bryan.
"Luke Bryan called my mom today to clarify that he would never disrespect my dad or me or any of us," Shooter tells the Los Angeles Times. "He also asked for Buddy’s number to call Kathy. Whether or not he does, that takes a lot of guts. I misfired and said some things in the past about people, namely John Mayer. And I didn’t have the guts to apologize. So, that being said, that kinda won me over."
Jennings says he appreciated Pinkerman’s defense of the family legacy, but adds, "While I support my family obviously, personally the whole thing didn’t make a difference to me. I’ve had my fair share of words being twisted and articles being sliced and diced. So I figured it was that … My point is it's all flush in my book. He said some [stuff] and because of the Internet it came back on him. But he went above and beyond and manned up and apologized. In the long run I believe his image has improved."
What Almost Kept Luke From Nashville? Find Out