A few weeks back, singer-songwriter Kirby Brown announced that his upcoming album, Uncommon Prayer, will be officially released September 7. Now, he’s sharing new song “Gimme A Week” with an official music video filmed and shot by Alex Justice. The lively and vibrant “Gimme A Week” was shot in Nashville, Tenn. at Creative Workshop.
On “Gimme A Week,” the East Texas native begins unpacking the ideas and notions of what and where home truly is. Brown, who currently lives in Nashville, began writing the bustling “Gimme A Week” after moving to New York City several years ago. That uproot and transition helps set the pace for “Gimme A Week’s” brisk and eager gait.
“I went up to the city to find myself but didn’t find a thing at all except for a couple new ways to forget what I was looking for,” Brown sings on the opening lines. Right from the jump, Brown’s delivery sways back and forth between a confidence that’s, at times self-assured and others, one that needs some convincing. He’s made a jump of blind faith and not fully sure if he’s going to fly or is just falling. Regardless, he’s betting on himself to find a way.
“When I first moved to New York, I think I thought it was going to be like Greenwich Village in 1963 for some reason,” Brown tells Wide Open Country. “I just had a different notion of it in my mind that was different from the reality of what it was. I came to carve out a place for myself there. It felt like home for a while. But those first couple of years were super brutal.”
There’s a sense to “Gimme A Week” that feels as though he’s unable to return—or perhaps that home just isn’t what it once was. The items that should spark memories, an old love letter and paper doused in perfume, they aren’t comforting. Rather, they leave you feeling empty and sullen.
Still, Brown finds his stride come chorus. With lines such as “Gimme a week and a ride to the downtown station with a dollar to my name” and “Gimme a compass needle, some honest people, and a place that I can stay,” Brown may be searching, but he’s determined. Once “I can find my own way home” comes around, it’s a full-blown singalong.
“I’d kind of gotten to this spot where I had this realization where I felt like I’d bitten off more than I could chew,” admits Brown. “I was feeling a bit lost, isolated or just out of place. I hadn’t figured out how I was going to belong there. There was this longing for some kind of identity.”
There’s a bit of an anthemic charge to “Gimme A Week.” It’s ushered in with a glow of warm organ, a biting electric guitar and Brown’s own firm acoustic down strums. Though slower-paced than Ryan Adams‘ “New York, New York” or Tom Petty‘s “Learning to Fly,” “Gimme A Week” still has a hearty shuffle that beelines towards the finish line. Brown and company never idle the engines.
“There’s this book in the Episcopal Church called The Book of Common Prayer,” says Brown. It’s pretty much stuff they repeat over and over and have for hundreds of years. It’s a vital part of their services. For me, I feel like writing songs are an uncommon form of prayer. They’re about desire, longing and wanting to find that missing piece that you lost touch with or maybe never found that completes the puzzle.”
The bulk of Uncommon Prayer down in Muscle Shoals, Ala. at the legendary FAME Studios. Rising producer Beau Bedford and an all-star cast of The Texas Gentlemen joined Brown for the sessions. Brown and company also worked on the album at Dallas’ Modern Electric Sound Recorders, Bedford’s home base.
“It kind of felt like rock and roll summer camp,” says Brown. “You’re on hallowed ground when you’re down there. That mythology of Muscle Shoals is as real as you want it to be. There’s the good kind of ghosts in that place.”
In addition, Bedford, Ryan Ake, Scott Lee, and Aaron Haynes of The Texas Gentlemen, with supporting vocals by Reuben Bidez, Brandy Zdan, and Carl Anderson joined Brown for the official music video for “Gimme A Week.”
Uncommon Prayer is the follow-up to 2011’s Child of Calamity and is available for pre-order here.
Uncommon Prayer Track List:
1. “Gimme A Week”
3. “Paint Horse”
4. “Sweet Shame” (featuring Leon Bridges)
6. “Livin’ to Fly”
7. “Little Red Hen”
8. “Place to Stay”
9. “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”
10. “Broken Bell”