In this image released on March 06, 2022, Luke Bryan and Jordan Davis perform onstage during the 57th Academy of Country Music Awards, airing on March 07,2022, at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for ACM

'Buy Dirt': The Story Behind Jordan Davis + Luke Bryan's Heartfelt Hit About the American Dream


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Jordan Davis found himself a hit in January of 2022 with his song, "Buy Dirt," featuring country star Luke Bryan. In the song, Davis and Bryan pass along a little advice to listeners that was given out by a wise old man. This advice is all about making life count with the people you love. The man encourages the song's narrators (Davis and Bryan) to "Buy Dirt," settle down with your soulmate and raise a family. The wholesome song preaches the American dream, and with its easy-going country production, it's not hard to see how it topped the charts.

Who Wrote 'Buy Dirt'?

"Buy Dirt" was co-written by Davis, his brother Jacob Davis, Josh Jenkins and Matt Jenkins. The songwriters shared with American Songwriter that the tune was written in a cabin near Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Matt Jenkins is the writer who brought the initial idea of the song to the table.

"I actually heard someone say or heard it somewhere: 'Buy dirt. They ain't making any more of it,'" Matt says. "And so we had talked about that, talking about buying the farm, and all that stuff kind of led to 'Buy Dirt.' I think that's where we were like, 'Hey, let's write that.'"

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From there, the writers say it took them only 30 minutes to write the first verse and chorus. They decided to write the song from the perspective of the elderly man so that the advice wouldn't be "coming from Jordan, saying, 'Hey, this is what you should do.'" However, the idea to shift the song's perspective is something Jordan wasn't originally on board with.

"I remember fighting that. I feel like that was so dated in like the story song," Jordan said. "Obviously, I lost that because the song is what it is."

Once the song was written, Jordan then got the idea to send it to Bryan. The two artists first met at an awards show, and they got to know one another over time, including at golf tournaments. When Jordan sent Bryan the song, he simply held his breath and hoped for a good answer.

Jordan Davis and Luke Bryan attend the 55th annual Country Music Association awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 10, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee.

Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA

"I felt we had became close friends enough for me to feel comfortable in sending him the song," Jordan shared with Sounds Like Nashville. "I left him a text message with the song attached and told him how much it meant to me. He got right back to me within a couple minutes and said he loved it. He wanted to live with it, make sure he would be right for the song. He called me a week later and said yes. He's one of the busiest guys out there and for him to be part of it speaks for the song."

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"That was a very cool thing, being in the studio with one of the best ever in country music," he adds. "That was a really cool moment. I had to pinch myself but it was a special day."

"Buy Dirt" went on to become a two-week No. 1 hit that was nominated for three ACM Awards, a CMT Award (for the video) and a Billboard Music Award. The two artists also teamed up to perform the hit song at the ACM Awards in March of 2022. 

Buy Dirt Lyrics:

A few days before he turned 80
He was sittin' out back in a rocker
He said, "What you been up to lately?"
I told him, "Chasing a dollar"
And in between sips of coffee
He poured this wisdom out
Said, If you want my two cents on making a dollar count
Buy dirt
Find the one you can't live without
Get a ring, let your knee hit the ground
Do what you love but call it work
And throw a little money in the plate at church
Send your prayers up and your roots down deep
Add a few limbs to your family tree
And watch their pencil marks
And the grass in the yard all grow up
'Cause the truth about it is
It all goes by real quick
You can't buy happiness
But you can buy dirt
Before you get caught on that ladder
Let me tell you what it's all about
Find you a few things that matter
That you can put a fence around
And then he laid it out
Buy dirt
Find the one you can't live without
Get a ring, let your knee hit the ground
Do what you love but call it work
And throw a little money in the plate at church
Send your prayers up and your roots down deep
And add a few limbs to your family tree
And watch their pencil marks
And the grass in the yard all grow up
'Cause the truth about it is
It all goes by real quick
You can't buy happiness
But you can buy dirt
You can buy dirt
And thank the good Lord for it
'Cause He ain't makin' any more of it
So buy dirt
Find the one you can't live without
Get a ring, let your knee hit the ground
Do what you love but call it work
And throw a little money in the plate at church
Send your prayers up and your roots down deep
Add a few limbs to your family tree
And watch their pencil marks
And the grass in the yard all grow up
'Cause the truth about it is
It all goes by real quick
You can't buy happiness
But you can buy dirt

READ MORE: 'Girl Crush': The Story Behind Little Big Town's Captivating Song

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