Music

Hear Josh Abbott’s Ode to His Father on ‘Ain’t My Daddy’s Town’

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The Josh Abbott Band’s latest cut, “Ain’t My Daddy’s Town” is all of the searing heartfelt sincerity that we’ve come to expect from Abbott’s storytelling abilities. It comes from a special place for the frontman, who dedicates the song to his late father.

“Ain’t My Daddy’s Town” is an earnest reflection on the shoes that Abbott’s father left behind. For Abbott, filling them isn’t easy.

In a live video performance of the song, he holds his dad’s most cherished hat. You might need to keep those tissue boxes at the ready—he keeps it clutched in his hands while committing to his performance.

“I didn’t even change the hat size on this,” he says before performing. “It’s a little big. Always is. I don’t think you ever fit in your dad’s clothes.” He muses on the song’s second verse that he hopes that he can be as “tough as nails” and “strong as oak” as his pops was.

Surprisingly, Abbott initially turned down the song. It was pitched to him by original songwriters Jared Johnston and Rodney Clawston a month prior to his father’s death.

Following his stroke just days after the pitch, Abbott began to change his tune about “Ain’t My Daddy’s Town.” He began relating it to his own experiences and ultimately decided to take it on.

The second verse referenced above is what Abbott had rewritten to better call back on what was going on in his own mind following his dad’s passing. The sheer strength he had to take “Ain’t My Daddy’s Town” on in the end will be remembered. For everyone who’s lost their father, Abbott provides a shoulder to cry on with this all-too relatable story.

“Ain’t My Daddy’s Town” Lyrics

Dirt on a casket
Flowers in a basket
And momma’s there cryin’
Daddy’s there lyin’

Preacher’s sayin’ somethin’ ’bout
How he’s in a better place now
But I’m still here
Same last name
Standing in the rain

And this ain’t my daddy’s town no more
Somebody’s gotta fill those boots he wore
I ain’t sayin’ I’m the man he was
But it’s my turn to carry on what he loved
And this ain’t my daddy’s town no more

Gonna have to scoot the seat up
In that old red Ford work truck
Take my mom out on a date
Make sure her bills aren’t paid late

Cut the turkey at Christmas
Tryin’ not to tear up
Be tough as nails
Strong as oak
Just like him, I hope

And this ain’t my daddy’s town no more
Somebody’s gotta fill those boots he wore
I ain’t sayin’ I’m the man he was
But it’s my turn to carry on what he loved
And this ain’t my daddy’s town no more

When they carve my name off
That old marble piece of stone
And my kids are standing in the rain
I hope they’ll wanna say

That this ain’t my daddy’s town no more
Somebody’s gotta fill those boots he wore
I ain’t sayin’ I’m the man he was
But it’s my turn to carry on what he loved

And this ain’t my daddy’s town no more
Dirt on a casket
Flowers in a basket
Momma’s there cryin’
And daddy’s there lyin’

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Hear Josh Abbott’s Ode to His Father on ‘Ain’t My Daddy’s Town’