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'll Be Lost," Heather Sarona
On the stunning "I"ll Be Lost," North Carolina-based folk singer-songwriter Heather Sarona sings of feeling adrift when away from her love. The song, from Sarona's forthcoming album Head Above Water (out Jan. 28), was chosen as part of IBMA's 2021 Songwriter Showcase.
Head Above Water features Andrew Marlin (Mandolin Orange, Watchhouse), Libby Rodenbough (Mipso), Sarah McCombi (Chatham Rabbits) and Lissy Ross (Violet Bell) on harmonies, Hank Smith on banjo, Marcel Ardans on guitar, Alex Bingham on bass and Jason Cecil on percussion.
"I Can't Shake the Stranger Out of You," Lavender Country
Patrick Haggerty-led band Lavender Country made history in 1973 with what's likely the first album by an openly gay country act.
Per the band's bio, "Haggerty turned to Seattle's gay community for song topics that addressed a wide range of political and social concerns, including institutionalized oppression and divisions of the working class, as well as more personal subjects such as the complications of intimacy and sexual identity."
Nearly 50 years later, Lavender Country returns with sophomore album Blackberry Rose (out Feb. 18 via Don Giovanni Records).
A slicker, more modern rerecording of "I Can't Shake The Stranger Out Of You" from the first album teases Lavender Country's sophomore effort.
-- Bobby Moore
"Drinking Songs," Walker Hayes
Walker Hayes is back with a new single, "Drinking Songs" which will be part of his new album, Country Stuff The Album, to be released on Jan. 21. Along with "Drinking Song" the album is set to feature his viral hit "Fancy Like," "AA," "U Gurl," and 10 other tracks. The Grammy-nominated artist wrote "Drinking Songs" with Jordan Gray and speaks about someone's love for drinking, despite Hayes being six years sober.
"I don't drink anymore, but I still connect with how a song can get you through, just like a drink can for some people," Hayes told Music Mayhem Magazine "We've all been in a bar full of people singing together, arms around each other. Plus, the lyrics and the beat just have a relatable quality to them that feels so country to me."
"Love Talking," Eli Young Band
Eli Young Band kicked off the year with a new single that's sure to be playing on the radio for Valentine's Day. Written by frontman Mike Eli, Eric Arjes and Jeffrey East, the song tells the story of a man who confesses his feelings to his love interest after falling head over heels for her.
The band had teased the song through their Instagram, captioning the post, "Definitely not the booze talking! It's time to let the love do the talking! We're really proud of this song. We think we accomplished something big with a little sleight of hand and misdirection"
"Love Talking" follows the band's previous songs "Break It In," "Lucky for Me," Where Were You" and "Love Ain't," which served as the lead single from their 2019 This Is Eli Young Band: Greatest Hits album.
"Run," Morgan Wade
"Run" is one of six new songs added to Morgan Wade's breakthrough 2021 album Reckless and I just can't stop listening to it on repeat. Wade sings of the ups and downs in a relationship and the feeling of yearning for more. Her lyrics are poetic and immediately transport you to a time you felt stuck either in a relationship or in a specific time in your life. If this is any indication of Reckless (Deluxe Edition), I can't wait to see what else she has in store for us.
So many places that I ain't been/ All I know is I was living my life for him," Wade sings.
"We could fly, we could leave this town/ Bury these memories that been holding us down."
-- Courtney Fox
"Good Beer," Seaforth & Jordan Davis
Seaforth's first new song since their hit "Breakups" was well worth the wait. "Good Beer" partners the duo with Jordan Davis, delivering their cheeky lyrics with an upbeat tempo. Not to mention their music video is just all good fun.
"We haven't put music out in a minute, but we got tired of shedding tears and wanted to come into 2022 swingin'," Tom Jordan and Mitch Thompson told Entertainment Focus.
"We wrote 'Good Beer' with two of our best mates, Rocky Block and Jordan Dozzi, and we think it's a fun way to give folks a sneak peek at a new project we're excited to share soon. Obviously having Jordan Davis on this track is exciting for us, he's a full-blown legend. We're fans of his and now friends, so we're stoked to share it with him too."
-- Courtney Fox