“I still remember Miss Bessie singing…”
Okay. I don’t. That’s not my story to tell, but this one is…
I was raised a country music loving girl thanks to my stepdad Rich and his blue Ford pick-up truck. He’d pick me and two of my sisters up for weekend visits, put Q106 on the radio, and we’d all belt out George Strait, Reba*, Willie, Randy Travis, The Judds, Brooks & Dunn, and Alabama to name a few and nearly not enough.**
Country was my music of choice from the 80s through the 90s, but somewhere along the line I drifted away. It got too…I don’t know? Commercial? Poppy? Whatever it was, it lost its appeal for me. Its edge. The storytelling.
Fast-forward to being (mostly) all grown up and chasing that work/life/mom balance. I was working from home, usually late at night while G and Kate were sleeping, and I’d stream music on the TV to keep me company. I quickly got tired of hearing the same Top 40 songs over and over again so I searched for a country music station and decided to reconnect with my roots.
“I still remember Chief singing…”
Okay. It doesn’t quite have that same ring to it, but I’ll argue all day the pull was the same. I didn’t pay much attention to the music playing in the background while I worked…until Eric Church came on.
Every. Single. Time I heard his voice I’d stop what I was doing and look up at the screen to see who was singing. Every time a song poked through my concentration it was Eric Church. Before long, I started recognizing his voice and would “call it” before I’d look up to confirm that, yep, it was him.
His songs would stop me in my tracks. I couldn’t resist singing along. Or sometimes I’d just sit and listen and smile. Or cry. Or dance in the living room at midnight all by myself.
(Or at the kitchen sink.)
There is just something about his voice, his words, his music – all of it – that gets down deep and rattles my soul. I purchased all of his albums and they’ve been on repeat ever since.
In April of 2017 I had the insane excitement of getting to see him live in concert in Milwaukee, Wisconsin during his “Holdin’ My Own” Tour. I rented a limo and rounded up a group of girlfriends and we had the time of our lives!
Here’s a little clip of “Drink In My Hand” from the show. (Please forgive my poor camera skills – dancing and singing occasionally took precedent over filming.)
Until maybe this weekend.
I’m heading to Green Bay for BOTH nights of Eric Church’s Double Down Tour!! I turn 40 this month, and Eric added this stop in Wisconsin*** on my birthday month – it’s a sign, and I just had to be there! My friend Amanda and I will be seeing him live, singing and dancing our asses off on both Friday and Saturday nights. I’m so excited I can hardly handle it. Only 3 more sleeps! I cannot wait!
Thank you, Chief, for bringing this country girl back to country music.
*Remember when Reba McEntire was considered SO edgy?! That red dress, y’all. #originalJLo
**Anyone remember that song Redneck Girl? (“Gimme a, gimme a, gimme a redneck girl…”) I’d sing that song at the top of my lungs in Rich’s pick up truck thinking I was a “redneck girl” because I had red hair that – you know – was long enough to touch the back of my neck. I thought red hair that touches your neck = “redneck.” I now know better and realize I was a redneck girl for many other reasons.
***I also saw Eric Church in Milwaukee this past March at the beginning of his Double Down Tour. So amazing!! I can’t wait to double down!