Each week the Wide Open Country staff rounds up our favorite newly released country and Americana songs. Here are five new songs we can't stop listening to this week:
"The Luckiest," Josh Abbott Band
The Josh Abbott Band's newest song thanks God for key elements of the country lifestyle: good friends, true love, small towns, cold beer and a well-worn pair of boots. It's not some algorithm-driven list of buzzwords like we usually get when a more pop-friendly act rattles off the simpler things in life. Instead, it's a heart-felt statement of gratitude, punctuated by Abbott being thankful that King George still makes country records.
"Keep on Smilin'," Blackberry Smoke Feat. Jimmy Hall
Blackberry Smoke team with one of Southern rock's greatest showmen, Jimmy Hall, for this raucous cover of Hall's biggest hit with the band Wet Willie. It's one of three tracks featuring Hall on Blackberry Smoke's six-song EP Live From Capricorn Sound Studios (out June 19). Additional covers on the EP include everything from the Marshall Tucker Band's "Take the Highway" to Little Milton's "Grits Ain't Groceries." Proceeds from record sales go to MusiCares' COVID-19 relief fund.
"Woke Up Tired," Honey County
Honey County's been sharing solid tunes for several years now, with highlights including a permanent part of our seasonal playlist, "Sale of the Summer." That trend continues with "Woke Up Tired," a song the trio co-wrote with singer-songwriter Kalie Shorr. It's about not being able to shake thoughts about a certain someone, even when you're dog-tired at the end of the night.
"Welcome To Hard Times," Charley Crockett
Acclaimed singer-songwriter and hardcore country troubadour Charley Crockett delivers an anthem for the down and out with "Welcome to Hard Times," the title track to his forthcoming album.
"This record is for the folks who feel like everything's fixed. If you think you're playing a rigged game, you're right," Crockett says in a press release. "If it seems like all the cards are marked in advance, they are. But you still gotta roll the dice, even when you know they're loaded. "
Welcome to Hard Times is out July 31 via Thirty Tigers.
-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer
"Redwood Tree," Cam
Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Cam reflects on time and aging on "Redwood Tree." Written by Cam, Tyler Johnson and Anders Mouridsen, the song was inspired by the California-raised singer's own backyard.
"I grew up with a redwood tree in my backyard as my climbing tree. Spent so many afternoons up there as a kid looking out and dreaming about the future," Cam says in a press release. "It feels like I've lived 5 lifetimes since then -- I've done more than I can even remember, but still part of me wishes I could've stayed put, to have that time at home. But you can't be in two places once and you couldn't have known then what you know now. It's a song about time, and whatever way you spend it still feels like just a blink to a redwood tree."
"Redwood Tree" is the latest release from Cam's forthcoming sophomore album, which is due out later this year.
-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer