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:
"Walk With You," Big-B Feat. Georgette Jones
Norwegian country crooner Big-B (not to be confused with the rapper) has one of the best voices you might not have heard yet. This team-up with the only child of George Jones and Tammy Wynette, Tamala Georgette Jones, might just up his exposure in the U.S. If so, what better introduction than a love ballad that sounds more like a rarity from the '80s than a run-of-the-mill, modern country single?
"Won't Give In," Suzy Bogguss
Suzy Bogguss has always found the right songs to equally magnify her majestic vocal delivery and the original lyricists' intended message. That's certainly the case with "Won't Give In," a song written and first recorded by Neil and Tim Finn: New Zealanders known for their runs with Split Enz, Crowded House and the Finn Brothers. No word on whether this leads to more country covers of rock ballads, but who exactly would complain if that's in the cards?
"Never Makes a Sound," Jonathan Terrell
Austin, Texas singer-songwriter Jonathan Terrell is part Bruce Springsteen, part Kris Kristofferson. Which is to say that he's a dynamic performer with a weathered voice and a heart full of songs. If you're new to his music (or itching for fresh tunes), check out not just this blend of country twang and Heartland rock grit but also the four other songs ("Give It Time," "Cowboy Band," "Love Can Find You Anywhere" and "Everywhere I Go") released so far this year by Terrell.
"Waste of a Whiskey Drink" Gary Allan
'90s country maverick Gary Allan returns with "Waste of a Whiskey Drink." Written by Josh Kear, Michael Hardy, and Mark Holman, the tune is a cautionary tale about a heartbreaker.
"It's about a girl that you just don't want any of your friends to get tangled up with. You've been there. And you're telling him as he's looking at her and thinking she's cute... and you're saying, 'Man, just do something else because she's a waste of a whiskey drink. Don't do it," Allan says in a press release.
The no-holds barred song is a welcome return to form for the "Every Storm (Runs Out Of Rain)" singer, whose Smoke Rings in the Dark album recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.
-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer
"A Satisfied Mind," Darrell Scott feat. Robert Plant and Patty Griffin
Legendary singer-songwriter Darrell Scott has a long history with "A Satisfied Mind," a tune recorded by both Porter Wagoner and Glen Campbell. Scott grew up hearing his brother sing the song and, ten years ago, performed the song while on tour with Robert Plant and the Band of Joy. Recorded live with Robert Plant and Patty Griffin, Scott's version is a stunning, stirring rendition of a timeless classic.
"I first heard 'A Satisfied Mind' from a Glen Campbell recording in the mid 1960s -- my brother used to sing it as he was a Glen fanatic," Scott says. "Fly forward decades later when I performed the song in a trio I was in when I first got to Nashville in the mid-'90s. Then in 2010 while I was on tour with Robert Plant and the Band of Joy that included Buddy Miller and Patty Griffin, Robert wanted me to lead a song for the show...I considered the many songs I had written and decided to offer a song I did not write: 'A Satisfied Mind' (written by Red Hayes and Jack Rhodes) because it highlighted this great band and these great singers on THIS great song from the late 1940s (first recorded by Porter Wagoner). Once it was in the show it was welded in place as it was the right song for the slot. I sang it every show for the next 18 months. Fly forward another 10 years and I had called a session with Buddy and Patty in Nashville to simply record it with the 3 of us, and the day before we were to go in studio (and from the archives of our front of house sound man, the late great Roy Williams, via Buddy) I was sent this live recording -- and there was no need to have a studio version -- as we had this: this performance, on some night, somewhere in the world, with these friends: Robert, Buddy and Patty. So, where does the time go, Uncle John?"
-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer