Bailey Zimmerman, Tyler Childers, & More – Single Round-Up

AJ Astle

Song While You’re Away – Tyler Childers Written By Adam Delahoussaye

In what appears to be a year of retreading old ground for Tyler Childers, “Song While You’re Away” plainly unveils the evolution of ethos that the Kentucky native is constantly undergoing. This re-release of a fan favorite track is a nice surprise for the greater “Twisters” soundtrack and Childers fans alike. Physically and sonically, a lot has been shaved off the now-superstar. Where the Childers of old, with his scraggly beard and unkempt man-bun, would approach this prose with nothing but strings and rasp, there’s more pomp and elegance added when revisiting those scribbles on the notepad a good eight years later. Choruses are paired down, yet the instruments gently swell up, and there’s a sense of control in the voice of a man who’s gained far more perspective on the stories he’s been cutting his teeth with almost a decade later. While some of those may have lost their practicality or relevance in his personal life, tracks like this demonstrate Childers’s keen ability to look through a lens with multiple vantage points. Learning new tricks or mastering old ones, who says this old dog can’t do both?


Miss America – The Castellows Written By Creed Miller

With their debut EP in February, The Castellows have become one of the most intriguing new groups in country music. On their latest release, the trio of sisters continued to build off that momentum. “Miss America” opens with the harmonica and light banjo teaming up to set a peaceful tone for the rest of the track. The song’s overall production is smooth and relaxing, matching well with the vocals. The sister’s harmonies on the chorus are astonishing and tie the entire thing together. Written by The Castellows, Nicolle Galyon, and Will Bundy, they imagine America as a teenage girl who has big dreams and a chip on her shoulder but has lost who she once was. As much as they love her now, they miss the confident, outspoken person she used to be. It also serves as a double meaning, reflecting on their childhoods; they miss the days and memories they created as they grew up but recognize they can’t get them back. “Miss America” is the perfect release ahead of Independence Day and yet another impressive track to add to The Castellows’ resume. 


New to Country – Bailey Zimmerman Written By Max Buondonno

Over the years, Bailey Zimmerman has proven he can craft meaningful tracks with plenty of substance, radio-friendly foot-stompers that are equally enjoyable, and much more generic tracks that probably should’ve been left on the cutting room floor. His newest single, “New to Country,” is the result of the latter. Written by Zimmerman, Austin Shawn, Heath Warren, Jacob Hackworth, and Tim Galloway, the single reminds you that Bailey is “country as hell,” as per an Instagram video promoting the song. This hair-whipping, cold-beer-cracking party anthem does just that thanks to lyrics like “ain’t a thing change ’round here but the money” and “I don’t need me nothing but a spot out in the country.” But despite his raspy voice giving the song a Zimmerman flair, there’s nothing enjoyable about this one. At best, it sounds like a poorly-written Florida Georgia Line song from 2014, complete with a mid-chorus rap that will quickly give you flashbacks of the early days of the bro-country era. Fans of flashy, rock-rap adjacent country songs will add this track to their playlist to turn it up at parties, while the rest of us will move past it and forget it ever existed.


Lucky Sometimes – Midland Written By Max Buondonno

The second single from Midland’s upcoming album, Barely Blue, is a tasteful track to help you ride the high after good things happen to you. Recognizing the little things we consider lucky in life, the song offers some of the band’s best efforts yet. From the trio’s signature harmonies laced throughout the chorus to the stripped-back production, the track gives a sense of tranquility that’s easy to enjoy and fun to sway along with. Midland is taking a different approach with their next project, working with Dave Cobb (of Chris Stapleton and Sturgill Simpson fame) to lean more into a lush, unfiltered backdrop that perfectly complements the band’s vocal performances. While it’s commonplace nowadays to hear songs that play the “think positively” card, Midland’s take feels refreshing and new. The void production of mounting harmonies creates an ambiance that only the trio could deliver, echoing the neo-traditional roots Mark Wystrach, Cameron Duddy, and Jess Carson planted many years ago.


WILDSIDE – Keith Urban Written By Max Buondonno

It’s an exciting time to be Keith Urban. With the landscape of country music continuing to evolve and trends swaying constantly in polar opposite directions, staying true to whatever path you’ve paved for yourself as an artist can be tricky. Yet somehow, Urban remains untempted to switch things up, sticking to the glossy, pop-adjacent production he’s been known for since the days of his 2013 album, Fuse. The third single from his forthcoming 11th studio album HIGH, “WILDSIDE,” is a predictable tune about a girl who is “Little Miss Angel” during the week and the life of the party when the weekend hits. Written by Urban, ERNEST, Ashley Gorley, and David Garcia, the track doesn’t do anything lyrically interesting, beyond perhaps inventing the descriptor “Alabamalicious.” Of course, the slick guitars and admittedly fun production will make you want to bust a move, and compared to other tracks that Urban has shared in the past (looking at you, “Straight Line”), this is far from the worst. But if you were hoping HIGH would have any glimmer of the classic Keith Urban you may be craving, the odds of that are growing scarcer by the minute.


All The Way To Memphis – Mason Ramsey Written By Ryan Lippe 

After joining Lana Del Rey in Boston to perform “Blue Over You,” Mason Ramsey is back with that same slick, retro sound that leans into his organic vocal talent. Ramsey has been working with Dan Fernandez at this latest stage in his career, and the pair has created a fascinatingly mature sound for someone of Ramsey’s vocal range and age. Ramsey’s melodious voice is on full display immediately as the song starts with a very elongated crescendo featuring tall vowels and precise breath control. The sound is reminiscent of a young Elvis Presley, mixed with the long notes of Frank Sinatra and soft fiddle and steel running through the background. Notably, Fernandez and Ramsey arranged the song to highlight the chorus rather than the verses; this allows the two verses to act as subtle transitions between each stage, with Ramsey flexing his vocal muscles and winding in and out of each chorus. Thematically, the lyrics provide past love ballads that would have been made in Sinatra’s time.


Tulsa – 49 Winchester Written By Ryan Lippe 

Ahead of their upcoming August release, 49 Winchester’s latest single, ‘Tulsa,’ is a testament to producer Stewart Myers’s ability to create complex instrumental arrangements and a true listening experience around the song. Like many other 49 Winchester tracks, this song features themes of traveling and being a nomad. Despite calling Virginia home, Issac Blaine Gibson and Stewart Myers idolize Tulsa, Oklahoma, as the place they choose to call home. The dynamic chorus also features callbacks to songs by Don Williams and Kenny Rogers, who pioneered the Oklahoma/ Red Dirt scene. Clocking in at more than four minutes, this doesn’t quite have the extra flair that would warrant the lengthy time stamp. However, the contemporary guitar riffs keep the listener engaged. With each release, 49 Winchester continues to build up the anticipation for Leavin’ This Holler, giving fans another glimpse into what the record holds.


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