If he had done nothing more than write the 1970 Ray Price hit "For the Good Times," Kris Kristofferson would have earned a place in the great American songbook. But he has also given us "Help Me Make It Through the Night" and "Me and Bobby McGee." Now, 40 years down the road, he's still touring, spinning poetry and turning out melodies every bit as poignant and succinct as those classic songs. As daring as ever, his most recent album, 2006's This Old Road, uses the unforgettable "In the News" to tie the Scott Peterson case to the destruction of the environment and the war in Iraq. "Wild American" pays eloquent tribute to such diverse renegades as John Trudell, Steve Earle and Willie Nelson. Then he turns around and delivers "Holy Creation," as beautiful a tribute as one can imagine to a daughter, her lover and their child, all made more powerful by his one-of-a-kind voice and perfectly understated guitar. The man's visit to Kansas City this Friday is not to be missed.