The Round Up: New Music From Maren Morris, Joe Nichols with Blake Shelton and More
This Friday is packed with new music choices from country music’s legends, brightest stars and up-and-comers. There’s a ’90s-era foot-stomper from Joe Nichols and Blake Shelton, a devastating story song from Dolly Parton, and a ballad about “the beauty of the temporary” from Maren Morris and more.
Joe Nichols featuring Blake Shelton, “I Got Friends That Do”: Nichols and Shelton team for this good time, blue-collar anthem that celebrates having fun and generous friends. The up-tempo party song spotlights two of country music’s most distinct voices from the last 20 years and pairs them with production that could flourish just as easily in 2000 as it does today. Whether the song makes it to radio remains to be seen, but it’s a guaranteed favorite for the fans who seek it out. “I Got Friends That Do” is from Nichols’ new album “Good Day For Living” that came out today (Feb. 11).
High Valley, “Run Outta Somedays”: High Valley is back with what the band does best: up-tempo, harmony-rich country bluegrass — with a message. Co-written by High Valley singer Brad Rempel with Jon Nite and Ben Stennis, “Run Outta Somedays” is about making every moment count. Parents should listen with an open wallet and a box of tissues because when the song is over, they’ll be planning a family trip to Disney World – or anywhere else their kids want to go.
Lyrics include: Time is a highway, only runs one way| Ain’t no breaks can’t stop that train|Young summers drag like honeycomb dripping|Till the years start dropping like harvest rain
“My biggest fear is saying, ’Someday we’ll do that,’ to my kids and ultimately running out of time,” Rempel said in a statement. “2022 is the year of making every moment count!”
Dolly Parton, “Blue Bonnet Breeze”: Eerie windchimes, the sound of wind blowing, and a melancholy violin set the tone for Parton’s new coming of age lullaby that ends in tragedy. The story song follows a wealthy young man and an underprivileged young woman who fall in love and pursued their relationship despite arguments from their families. Parton’s theatric performance combines her iconic singing voice and spoken word that weaves a tale akin to Appalachian Shakespeare.
Roman Alexander, “Over Me”: Before Alexander was catapulted to stardom with smash hits “Cocktail Conversations” and “Between You & Me,” he was a small-town boy from Missouri struggling to keep a romantic flame lit in a relationship. With Music City on his mind – the burning fire began to dwindle, as he couldn’t commit. In true sing-songwriter fashion, Alexander put pen to paper to write a farewell letter to the Midwest girl he once couldn’t provide for.
“Send a text, to an ex, if it’s me don’t hit send | Yeah I’m up to good, I just ain’t what you need | You’re going to find somebody better | change your mind like a Midwest weather | Forget about the man who lived down in Tennessee,” he sings within the breakup ballad.
The beat-driven melody intertwined with the remorseful lyrics makes “Over Me” the utmost perfect apology. With his captivating twang and modern country approach, Alexander proves there is a healthy way to heel a broken relationship.
Maren Morris, “Background Music”: Her angelic vocalist has a chilling way with words, as she effortlessly puts the meaning of life into perspective. Penned alongside talented songsmiths Jimmy Robbins and Laura Veltz – Morris reflects on her time on earth and ponders the legacy she will leave with her husband and fellow artist Ryan Hurd. Through heavenly instrumentals driven by a piano and traces of a whimsical guitar, Morris makes a promise to the “Chasing After You” singer that she will take advantage of every small moment.
“I wrote this about the beauty of the temporary, which is inevitably all things,” the hitmaker explained in a statement. “The romanticism of eternity sounds nice, but I like to think I savor things better when I know I’m not entitled to it in perpetuity.”
“Background Music” serves as a teaser to her forthcoming album, “Humble Quest” – which is set to drop on March 25.
Chase Matthew/ Kidd G, “Can’t Hide Love”: While Chase Matthew and Kidd G may be the new kids of the block, the two are proving that they are musical risk-takers ready to leave an impact on the genre. The love-centric single found its home on Matthew’s recently released debut record, “Born For This.” Together the newcomers are pushing the boundaries of mainstream country, as they did not shy away from incorporating ear-grabbing hip-hop elements. While spitting relatable lyrics in a free-style type of way, the men touch upon unbreakable love. The mixture of Matthew’s gritty country twang and Kidd G’s contemporary sound makes the hit destined to score a spot on any 2022 party playlist.
Listen to the full Roundup Playlist: