I mean, the last verse alone is absolutely brutal:
“When you go out to play this evenin’ Play with fire flies till they’re gone Then you rush to meet your lover Play with real fire till the dawn
It’s not supposed to be that way You’re supposed to know I love you But it don’t matter anyway If I can’t be there to console you…”
Second of all, I think it’s pretty safe to say that Waylon had more charisma in his pinky finger than most people have in their entire body, and the way he sings this song just takes it to another level.
“It’s Not Supposed To Be That Way” was included on his 1974 album This Time, which he co-produced with Willie Nelson, who originally penned the song as a solo-write.
Willie released it on his 1974 Phases & Stages record, and the duo would later include Willie’s version on their classic 1978 collaborative album, Waylon & Willie.
Waylon knew how to melt a heart and give every single performance everything he had no matter what. I’ll always be a firm believer that he had one of the greatest voices that has, or will ever, exist in country music.
It’s just one of those gut-wrenching sad country songs that somehow simultaneously has healing powers, because you don’t even need therapy after you listen to it on repeat 20 times over no matter your mood… and of course, leave it to the great Willie Nelson to pen such a song.
’70s country is just so damn underrated, and this video of Waylon’s performance at The Texas Opry, which also features him singin’ a little “Slow Rollin’ Low” in 1975, is proof: