The process of choosing a single for radio is often as arduous a task as writing the song. Each month, Sounds Like Nashville will feature a different artist and explore songs from his or her catalogue that we wish made it to radio. Make no mistake, this is no critique of the artist or label, it’s simply a list of songs we love so much that we think deserve to be in the spotlight. This month, we take a closer listen to Brad Paisley’s back catalogue and find eight gems that warrant airplay.
“It Never Woulda Worked Out Anyway” – from Who Needs Pictures
This hilarious track featured on Paisley’s 1999 debut album, Who Needs Pictures, was an early introduction to the singer’s unique sense of humor. The jazzy number has him singing of how he started several rumors about the girl he’s interested in so she’d stay single and he could date her. It’s a comical track that only someone like Paisley could pull off on radio.
“I’m sure those other fellas never once believed the lies I told were true / Like the time I told that cowboy that you used to be a man / And the doctor you were dating that you hide your wedding band / Even if I am responsible for scaring them away . . . I was doin’ you a favor ’cause it never woulda worked out anyway,” he sings.
“Part Two” – from Part II
On “Part Two,” Paisley reflects on a relationship that has long since ended. The fond memories of his ex have him wishing there could be a part two like all the best-selling Hollywood blockbusters. “Why can’t love be more like that, when the best ones get a second chance,” he questions beside soaring string accompaniment and delicate piano parts. Luckily for Paisley, he got his fairy tale film ending when he married real-life actress Kimberly Williams Paisley.
“Out in the Parkin’ Lot” – from Time Well Wasted
“Out in the Parkin’ Lot” is an ode to the place most people congregate before heading into a concert venue and Paisley gets some assistance from Alan Jackson on the fun track. The descriptive song vividly paints the picture of what often goes on in a parking lot before, during and after a show. Whether it’s a couple making out in their car, two guys getting into a drunken fight or someone looking for a friend, the song gives added meaning to that gravel space we all park our cars on near the venue.
“Time Well Wasted” – from Time Well Wasted
The title track of Paisley’s fourth studio album, “Time Well Wasted” is a reminder of the importance in slowing things down. Whether it’s calling out of work to go fishing with your father or spending the afternoon on the couch with your significant other watching movies, Paisley stresses the need to sometimes forget the to-do list in favor of making memories that will last a lifetime.
“I sure soaked up every minute of a memory we were making / And I count it all as time well wasted,” he sings on the chorus. So, when considering whether to skip work or class, allow Mr. Paisley to persuade you in the right direction.
“It Did” – from 5th Gear
Paisley is known for his funny side just as much as he is his sentimental. The heartfelt “It Did” is a beautiful ballad with the main character sharing how he didn’t think things could get any better in his life, but they did. A memorable wedding song if there ever was one, “It Did” shares the journey of a couple first meeting, getting married and eventually having a baby. The soaring music and Paisley’s emotive vocals strike a chord on what surely was the wedding song of 2007.
“Oh Love” – from 5th Gear
Long before their massive hit “Remind Me” was released with Carrie Underwood in 2011, the CMA Awards co-hosts collaborated on another ballad called “Oh Love.” Featured on Paisley’s 2007 record 5th Gear, “Oh Love” has the two singers trading verses about the power of love. “You’re the simple truth and you’re the biggest mystery,” they sing. A surefire radio hit, perhaps “Oh Love” is what sparked the decision for the country stars to team up again years later.
“Everybody’s Here” – from American Saturday Night
On “Everybody’s Here,” Brad Paisley portrays a man who’s a “heartbroken zombie,” trying his best to have a fun night out with friends after a breakup. Time and time again he’s asked where his significant other is and the newly single man just wants to scream. Paisley keeps the listener intrigued with his smooth vocals, distinct guitar groove and sultry musical accompaniment. It’s a unique side to the typically laid-back singer not quite heard before.
“Love Her Like She’s Leavin'” – from This Is Country Music
Another ballad set around a wedding, “Love Her Like She’s Leavin'” is a memorable story song that provides marriage advice from an uncle who’s been married for 45 years. Sending flowers, writing notes and giving unexpected gifts are just some pieces of wisdom bestowed on the new groom. A welcomed song from Paisley, striking harmonies from Don Henley only accentuate the lasting message given within the track.