press photo of Brennen Leigh
Lyza Renee

Wide Open Country's Six Pack: Brennen Leigh, Caroline Jones + More


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Every week, the Wide Open Country team rounds up our favorite newly released country, folk, bluegrass and Americana songs. Here are six songs we currently have on repeat.

"I Know You Know Me," Caroline Spence and Matt Berninger

Caroline Spence teamed up with The National's Matt Berninger for "I Know You Know Me," a gorgeous love song about the intimacy and comfort of being truly understood.

"'I Know You Know Me' is a song about the complex beauty of being truly known by someone, especially during times when you are feeling lost,"  Spence said in a statement. "We all have times when we want to hide away, and it is a powerful thing to have someone who won't let you forget yourself. That's where this song came from."

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The song follows Spence's 2019 release, Mint Condition.

-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer

"If Tommy Duncan's Voice Was Booze," Brennen Leigh

Brennen Leigh tips her hat to her western roots with "If Tommy Duncan's Voice Was Booze," the latest release from her forthcoming album Obsessed with the West (out May 6), a love letter to western swing featuring Asleep at the Wheel.

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"When I moved to Nashville from Texas," Leigh said in a press release, "for some reason it triggered another western swing phase in my life. I was out of Texas, but something about the swing was still grabbing me; I was listening to a lot of Bob Wills, and of course The Wheel. I had first been exposed to western swing through my parents' Asleep At The Wheel records while I was growing up."

-- Bobbie Jean Sawyer

"Here You Come Again," Cody Belew

Cody Belew, a rising force in Nashville's musical and LGBTQ+ communities, stripped Dolly Parton's pop-country benchmark "Here You Come Again" down to a sparse showpiece for his gorgeous vocal delivery.

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"I've wanted to sing 'Here You Come Again' in exactly this way since I was in middle school," Belew shared in a press release. "By then, I could sing you the Dolly Parton songbook, front to back, with no missteps. It wasn't until much later that I learned this was one of the only Parton hits that she herself didn't write. Of course I couldn't find any fault in her original, but I knew that if given the chance to record it myself I wanted to darken the edges a little."

Belew's drearier soundscape better suits his past romantic missteps than the peppy tone of the Parton original."I've been on the losing end of being in love, or wanting to be in love, with a toxic person -- nothing about that experience plays back like a fun night out in 1977," Belew added. "It's an imprinted memory of longing and rejection and frustration and of feeling insufficient, but wanting affection and attention so badly that you're willing to feel it all just to spend a little more time with that unavailable, unrequited lover. I wanted to live in that space -- to be surrounded by that feeling when I sing this song: 'Here you come again, and here I go.'"

-- Bobby Moore

"Getting to Me" (Stripped-Down Version), Caroline Jones

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Solo artist and Zac Brown Band collaborator Caroline Jones' way with words shines brighter than ever throughout this less-is-more gift for her Valentine.

"This stripped-down, reimagined version of the song brings out the romance and depth in the lyrics," Jones wrote for the video's description. "This is the first song I ever wrote about my husband, and to me it feels simultaneously like coming home and being on the precipice of a wonderful, surprising adventure. We actually cut this version at Southern Ground right after we cut the main album version, which is the opening track of my sophomore album Antipodes. Danny Rader and David Dorn [started]  overdubs, and when they started playing those beautiful lines on the bouzouki and keys respectively, it shone a whole new light on the song for me. We recut the vocal last month so the video can have a 'live performance' feel."

-- Bobby Moore

"Party Mode," Dustin Lynch

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Dustin Lynch has been having a great year so far. His powerful duet "Thinking' Bout You," featuring Mackenzie Porter, rocketed onto Billboard's Country Airplay radio chart. The fan-favorite song spent a total of five weeks at No. 1. This time around, he's continuing his streak with "Party Mode," from  his fifth album Blue in the Sky, released on Feb. 11.

The feel-good tune is a reminder of the joyful things in life. The singer debuted the music video, which features his real-life friends, who agreed to fly to Florida from Bowling, Green Ky., on Valentine's Day.

"This video was such a blast to shoot! Bringing my buddies, Cornbread and Corbin, down to Florida to get rowdy with me - that's the good stuff," Lynch told iHeartCountry. "If y'all know us, you know we like to keep it in 'Party Mode' year-round, so if you run into us out on the town ... we've got the first round!"

--Silke Jasso

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"Howdy," Chris Lane

If there's one thing Chris Lane knows how to do, it's sing captivating lyrics that instantly grab your attention. With his new single "Howdy," the singer keeps things upbeat with punchy lyrics and smooth vocals.

"Howdy into how ya doin'/ into how about me and you do-si-do around this/ Room until we're spinning' circles like a record/ Two steppin' our way right into somethin' better," Lane sings. "How'd he ever let you go, how'd he ever walk away/ He must've gone and hopped on a crazy train."

The song was written by John Byron, Sam Ellis and Blake Pendergrass. The new single follows his previous songs, "Stop Coming Over" and "Fill them Boots." Lane is currently on his Fill Them Boots Tour with country singers Tyler Rich, Lily Rose and Ernest.

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--Silke Jasso

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