Monday has arrived, and we’re halfway through August already! I’ve been seeing back to school pics already in my feed – seriously, some schools start so early! When I was a kid, the first day of school was always the Tuesday after Labor Day, not sometime in August! Looks like our school district is vying for a type of year-round school that has a full week off each month and a shortened summer. Should be interesting to see how it all pans out!
Meanwhile, since it’s Monday you know that Monday means music! This week is a freebie week, grab your favorite tune(s) and come dance with us, will you? Let’s start with this artist’s first radio single where the set-up line “Quit lying to yourself” to the hook is a lesson in itself.
It’s a colloquialism that hits at one of the keys to a successful emotional life – people who are the most objective in their self-evaluations are better equipped to deal with surprises, and generally easier to be around. Emotions were difficult for many Americans when COVID-19 forced them to isolate in 2020, but one constructive way to address the time was to explore new hobbies and habits. The artist did that by taking a chance on a platform that had previously made her skeptical: TikTok. She said:
“What else were we doing? I thought it was just a bunch of girls in bikinis – like, ‘I’m not going to be on this app’ – and then my manager was like, ‘Just trust me. Just post songs you want to post.’ And so I started posting the songs that I thought were kind of too personal for me.”
She soon found that the most revealing material got the biggest response. She discovered other young artists and songwriters she found intriguing, and that’s how she connected with the songwriter who helped her pen this particular song.
One of the ideas the songwriter brought to their writing session also had TikTok roots. Numerous women had posted short examples of guys letting them down with the simple phrase “If he wanted to he would.” The songwriter said:
“I think people love to make excuses for why somebody is the way that they are. They want to see the best in them, and sometimes it’s to a fault. I just kind of felt like this needed to be said, because there’s so many songs that are about the other side of heartbreaks. It’s super damsel-in-distress, and painful and miserable.”
Knowing the hook they were writing to, they started with the opening line, offering specific actions – Facebook likes and late-night phone calls, for example – that can be misread as romantic signals when they may simply be moves of convenience or loneliness. The artist said:
“’[This song]’ was truly a very brutal, honest song. I needed to hear this at 16, and I feel like a lot of girls and women do, but no one else knows how to say it to them. And so I’m like, ‘I just did all the work for you, and hopefully this will jog your brain.’”
Give a listen to Kylie Morgan with “If He Wanted To He Would”:
Next up, the phrase “worth a shot” means it’s a good idea to try because there’s a reasonable chance of success. This wordplay-heavy song finds these two collaborating artists portraying two lovers whose relationship is on the rocks. They contemplate one last attempt at a reconnection, aided by a shot or two of whiskey, and conclude it’s worth a shot.
This is the second time these two artists have collaborated. They previously duetted on the male artist’s 2016 hit single, which was the female artist’s first song for country radio.
The songwriters offered the song to the male artist first, who held it for a future album before giving the track up when his close friend, the female artist, showed an interest. She then invited him to be her duet partner. She said:
“It’s interesting how it is kind of a full circle, because Dierks is the one who really extended his hand and took a chance on me. And once I saw the shiny rhinestones of country music, I was like, ‘I’m in it. I want in.'”
Get ready for this super fun video (make sure you watch the very end), here’s Elle King featuring Dierks Bentley with “Worth A Shot”:
Next up, this favorite group embraces optimism in the wake of heartbreak in their hopeful new song. It reflects on a relationship that didn’t turn out as planned. Instead of dwelling on what went wrong, the singer reiterates that the rewards still outweigh the risks when it comes to betting on true love.
I might’ve missed a good one, almost had me a picket fence / But somethin’ ’bout the thirst made me say, ‘I love you’ first / And now I haven’t seen that man since / You win some, you lose some / Sometimes you get played by the game, but you’re never gonna make the shots you don’t take / So, you might as well fire away.
It’s a confident and fun anthem for anyone still on the hunt for a love that’s meant to last. This song is the latest pre-release track from the band’s tenth studio album which is set for release in its entirety on Sept. 16 (I of course have it pre-ordered). They were quoted as saying:
“[The album] is intentionally an emotional record that holds hands well with our last album. [This album] is focused on better days ahead, the value of friendships and family; it touches on heartbreak and letting go, but it’s full of sunshine and joy.”
Without further ado, here’s Little Big Town with “Better Love”:
Last, but certainly not least, it’s the season for “summer lovers” in this video for this group’s new single, the band’s first new music in nearly three years. The frontman said:
“Since the beginning, we’ve always set out to get people up on their feet, smiling and dancing when they hear our music.
‘[This song]’ felt like it had that special sauce when we were making it in the studio, and we’re already seeing the song work its magic when we play it live. We’re so excited to share it as our first new single in years. So, to all you summer lovers…this one is for you!”
The video captures picturesque summery vibes with the band and friends hanging out at a backyard pool party.
All the pretty girls looking sad all summer / All the pretty boys want to dance / Strangers in a world full of lonely lovers / Find someone and take ‘em by the hand
Get ready to dance, here’s Fitz and the Tantrums with “Sway”:
That’s a wrap for this week – have a great Monday! See you on the dance floor!
Want to join in the fun? It’s easy – just find a tune that rocks your boat, post it and link up – don’t forget to grab Xmas Dolly…er, um, I mean her button…over at her place here. Check out Xmas Dolly’s sidebar for the random themes we sport each week – and you can always ask for a specific theme of music you like, too. Check out the other music lovahs and let’s jam!