RaeLynn is continuing to give listeners insight into where she’s from on her second studio album, Baytown, released September 24. The 14-track, completed collection adds eight songs to her 2020 Baytown EP, delving deeper into who she is and continuing to establish her unique brand of country music. The tunes on the album showcase RaeLynn’s country hometown of Baytown, Texas through their lyrical content — like in “Small Town Prayer,” “Rowdy” and others — but the project was also inspired by the diverse musical styles RaeLynn grew up enjoying throughout her youth.
“I grew up with so many different types of so many people, so many different races, so many different cultures, but we were in a more country town,” RaeLynn told Sounds Like Nashville. “I think that’s represented in my music. You hear those pop influences, R&B influences, but you hear those country root influences as well. I always said I grew up on a playlist that is Beyoncé and Dolly Parton and 808s and banjos. That is what my playlist was as a kid.”
Those R&B and pop influences mesh with country in “Get That All The Time,” a duet with Mitchell Tenpenny. In the flirty tune written by RaeLynn, Tyler Hubbard, Kane Brown and Corey Crowder, the singer and Tenpenny trade pickup lines while smooth beats and banjo instrumentals accompany them.
“I met [Mitchell] right when I moved to town, and his voice is just so good,” said RaeLynn. “He’s got so much swag and he’s just funny as hell and makes me laugh and a good dude. I sent him this song and it was like, no question, he wanted to do it, which was so sweet. I was so grateful.”
RaeLynn then teams up with longtime friend and her former coach on The Voice, Blake Shelton, for the fun and witty “Why I Got A Truck.” RaeLynn said after years of looking for the right song for the two of them, she wrote “Why I Got A Truck” with Shelton in mind. The two artists audibly have fun on the track as they sing the ultra-country truck tune with humorous talking moments in between.
RaeLynn also slows it down on the project with the deeply personal “She Chose Me,” a raw and honest song about the way she came into the world — with her mother choosing to have her and raise her against all odds.
“I started asking questions, and I found out some truths that I didn’t necessarily know and it was hard for me to know that my mom almost didn’t choose me, almost decided that she didn’t know if that was the right path for her, but I am so grateful that she decided to keep me and make that decision,” said RaeLynn. “If you listen to the song, I can’t imagine what that decision was like being married to somebody and just all those things, but I think the one thing I love about this song so much is it’s not judgmental.”
As much as the 27-year-old dives into her past on the album, she also sings about her present, which is being a new mother to her daughter, Daisy, who was born September 8th. The last track, “Made For Me To Love (Demo)” is the love song she wrote to her unborn child when she first found out she was pregnant. The track brings the journey of Baytown to an end, wrapping up the album RaeLynn calls her “most personal” project yet.
“I would definitely say it’s my most personal yet,” she says. “When I released WildHorse, that was definitely the foundation of who I was when I first moved to Nashville and me figuring out what I wanted to say and figuring out what I wanted to write about and it created that beautiful foundation for me. I would for sure say that Baytown is me building this amazing house of what I want to represent and what I want to show people and what I want to give off.”