Josh Turner is celebrating the 15th Anniversary of his hit album, Your Man, with the release of a deluxe edition, out now.
Your Man Deluxe Edition includes all 11 of the original tracks plus live versions of the Triple-Platinum-selling title track “Your Man,” the popular “Me and God” and the multi-week number one hit “Would You Go With Me.” Guest artists on the original album cuts were John Anderson on “White Noise” and Dr. Ralph Stanley along with Diamond Rio’s Marty Roe, Gene Johnson, and Dana Williams on “Me and God.”
Turner says he had heard rumblings as long as a year or two ago that they might release the album on vinyl. Then the decision came down to re-release the entire album with the bonus tracks.
“I’ve never done this so it’s a whole new experience for me,” he tells Sounds Like Nashville. “It’s fun to be a part of this already before it comes out. Just the sheer fact that we’re celebrating 15 years since my second record was released, and adding three live versions, is great. I re-wrote the liner notes because now there are so many back stories, interactions with other artists and collaborations.
“Plus we are hoping it will reach a new generation of fans. It has already sold two million copies but this younger generation, they are buying single songs, so we’re hoping it will reach them and encourage them to see the full body of work. It’s not just about “Your Man” or “Me and God;” there are other songs on this record.”
Turner says that it has always been a priority of his to be an ambassador for the veteran artists and introduce his fans to the people who have come before him. “I respect them and I would like to bring them back into the spotlight. This record means even more, too, because John Anderson and I were friends before this record and now we’ve gotten to know each other really well.
“Diamond Rio has been together for more than 25 years and are still playing shows, and there’s a lot to be learned from that. And in the 15 years since this record has been out so many things have happened. Scotty McCreery sang ‘Your Man’ on American Idol, Chris Stapleton co-wrote ‘Your Man’ with Chris DuBois, and Jace Everett and sang background on another cut on the album, ‘Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln.” Now he has a solo career.
“We’ve done quite a bit of content for the new record, and I talked to Chris about his perspective and my perspective, how the song connected him as a writer and artist. It was his first number one as a writer and my first number one as an artist. Now the song has been officially certified RIAA-certified Triple Platinum.
“When the song came out Chris wasn’t a full-on artist, and he said when that song took off and climbed the charts, a lot of family and friends who had been worrying whether he would make it, they decided he would be alright in Nashville.”
Turner says the three live bonus tracks on the album, “Me and God,” “Would You Go With Me” and “Your Man,” were chosen based on the interaction he had with the audience on those songs. “We have a good time at all our shows, but it just depended on the night and how everybody was feeling. The Iive version of “Me and God,” when people hear it they go ‘oh that is different.’ That new arrangement came to me in a flash of genius. It happened before a show, and I played it for the band, they liked it and we played it that night.”
Turner says when he was about to release Your Man he had heard all about the sophomore curse. “It was a big deal to me that I was doing this second record. I thought this isn’t really happening, doing this album and the photo shoot and having these people sing with me on these songs. It was like giving me a lot of credibility, their seal of approval. The record debuted at number one, sold 100,00 copies in the first week, so those were the days! It was a very happy time for me.”
Turner says it is always interesting for him to listen to his earlier albums. “The first thing I notice is how much my voice has developed and matured. Your Man was the first record Mark Wright produced on his own, he really focused on vocals and tried to get them right. You can hear the youth in my voice on this record. If you listen to more recent records you can see a sizeable different. My vocal heroes George Jones and Randy Travis, when they started out you could hear the youth. I tried to push myself not to sing the same every time.”
Interesting for Turner, “Would You Go With Me” is blowing up on TikTok in the U.S. as well as Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland. He says is yet another platform where he can get songs out to fans. “It’s always interesting to me how people make my music a part of their life. This TikTok thing is one of many examples of that.
“Social media is a good means of getting my music out there. I don’t have any personal social media platforms; it is me as an artist. It is the only way to connect with fans. During the pandemic I was playing songs from my property for fans. I wasn’t too sure about doing that and then I saw where one fan said the series had helped them through the pandemic and the shutdown. She said she knew things were going to be okay because ‘Josh is still singing and he and other artists are caring about their fans.’ I was glad to hear that it turned out to be a good thing.”
Turner is looking forward to being back on the road and performing for his fans. “It will be great just being out on stage, playing music for fans again, and to be able to go out there and have fans singing back to me. I just played a show in South Texas. The doors opened at 8 but by 6 there was a long line of fans. This was a show where you had to stand up. This is what I missed during the pandemic, the loyalty of country music fans.”
Turner goes on to say there is not much an artist can do to prepare for being back on the road. “There is not much to prepare you for the adrenaline rush and getting into it and getting used to it. There is nothing that is the equivalent of that. I’ve done a lot of songwriting and stuff during this down time and tried to keep my voice healthy and in shape. I thought I was prepared to be on stage again, but when I did the first show I realized I’m not.”
One of the artists that Turner looks up to is Randy Travis. It just so happens that Travis is celebrating the 35th anniversary of his album, Storms Never Last, while Turner celebrates his 15th with Your Man.
“I have a cassette of Storms of Life in a shadow box in my home,” Turner says reverently. “That was the first music I bought myself. It changed me because at the time I was a huge Randy Travis fan. Looking at the cover of the record he looked approachable, standing there in front of pickup truck and country store. He looked like things I saw every day.
“The songs sounded like the soundtrack to my life. Well maybe not ‘Pickin Up Bones’ because I didn’t know what that was all about. Randy grew up close to where I grew up, I felt we were kindred spirits. Never in a million years did I think I’d call him a dear friend of mine, but he has taken me under his wings and I have him to thank for a lot of things. I loved having him on latest record, Country State of Mind, once again to honor those artists who came before me.”
Turner has had time to work on a new album but says he can’t talk much about it right now. “I can tell you it’s the fastest album record I did,” he says. “I did my parts in 22 days. I don’t know if I want to ever do that again.”
The Your Man deluxe edition is the first time the album has been pressed on vinyl. The vinyl version will be available exclusively at Walmart.
Track Listing for Your Man deluxe edition:
1. Would You Go With Me
2. Baby’s Gone Home To Mama
3. No Rush
4. Your Man
5. Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln
6. White Noise (featuring John Anderson)
7. Angels Fall Sometimes
8. Lord Have Mercy On A Country Boy
9. Me And God (featuring Dr. Ralph Stanley and Marty Roe, Gene Johnson, and Dana Williams of Diamond Rio)
11. Way Down South
2. Your Man (Live from Kansas City, MO)
13. Would You Go With Me (Live from Plant City, FL) 14. Me And God (Live from Key Largo, FL)