In 1974, Waylon Jennings released his album The Ramblin’ Man during the peak of the outlaw country movement.
With a higher production quality and a more polished sound, the album was a bigger commercial hit than his previous releases, even boosting to No. 3 on the charts.
He released “I’m a Ramblin’ Man” as a single that year, which quickly hit No. 1 on the country charts in both America and Australia. Originally written and recorded by Ray Pennington, the track is a cautionary tale, instructing intrigued women to steer clear of the narrator and his wandering ways.
“You better move away your standing too close to the plain,” Waylon warns. “Once I mess with the ol’ mind, your little ol’ heart won’t be the same.”
The track has become one of the most recognizable songs in Jennings’ incredible list of career hits. Watch this clip of Jennings performing “I’m a Ramblin Man”, taken from an archived episode of Austin City Limits.