Songland Recap: Florida Georgia Line Aren’t ‘Second Guessing’ Their Song Choice

Did you like FGL's song choice?

Songland Recap: Florida Georgia Line Aren’t ‘Second Guessing’ Their Song Choice
SONGLAND -- "Florida Georgia Line" Episode 206 -- Pictured: Florida Georgia Line -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

It’s easy understand why Songland is becoming a favorite among fans of reality competition shows. With the incredible talent of writer-producers Ester Dean, Shane McAnally and Ryan Tedder, and the insanely successful artists, like Florida Georgia Line, appearing weekly, not only are aspiring songwriters putting their best tunes forward, but music fans are enjoying a behind-the-scenes glimpse of how a song is born.

Shane introduced Florida Georgia Line saying, “So, ‘Cruise’ comes out and starts their career. And you think, if you have something that big, it’s hard to put something else out that might top it. But guess what? They have. Over and over.” Ryan added, “These guys are killer songwriters. They write hit songs for everybody else, including themselves. And they created their own genre within the country genre.” Shane added, “This is going to be a master class in how to craft a great song that everyone can sing along to.”

Gifted songwriters in their own right, Florida Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard were eager to see what the young writers would bring to the table. “We really love the concept of Songland,” Tyler said. “The fact that it showcases songwriters. Ultimately, we’re songwriters at heart. That’s our number-one passion.” He went on to say, “ He added, “Once I learned there was a career in songwriting, I said, ‘That’s what I want to do and that’s who I want to do it with.”

Brian added, “The cool thing about this show is kinda seeing yourself in the writers. We’ve all been there. And to be on both sides of it, we’re humbled to be here.”

SHAWN AUSTIN – Vancouver, British Columbia

“Country music isn’t about where you’re from, it’s about enjoying telling stories.”

  • Original song – “Ain’t Going Nowhere”

TYLER: “Melodies are awesome. Lyrically it’s pretty cool. I think structure wise, I would want to assess a little bit. I was ready to get to that hook. I was like, where’s the hook at?”

ESTER: “As a girl, I never heard ‘I’ll be your last kiss.’ That’s romantic, but still kinda sexy.”

BRIAN: “I didn’t mind the ‘lean on.’ The lean on was kinda fresh.”

RYAN: “That was my favorite line.”

LUKR – Hanover, Pennsylvania

“I don’t think about songwriting, I breathe it.”

  • Original song – “Hopes High”

SHANE: “That was amazing. Instantly sing-alongable.”

TYLER: “I think it’s really cool and it feels fresh. I can relate to the song. I hear a couple of melodic tweaks that I thought you were going to do and ended up not doing or maybe doing it later.”

ESTER: “You have great words here. Different choices of melodies come from a different singer.”

RYAN: “I want to hear a duality, like a contrast, like if our hopes are high, then there’s things you can’t control pulling me down.”

VICTORIA BANKS – Muskoka, Canada

“This song was inspired by Florida Georgia Line.”

  • Original song – “That’s a Country Song”

ESTER: “I love it because I didn’t feel isolated from a country song. I felt like a part of it. Thank you for this song. I appreciate it.”

BRIAN: “One thing that hits me right off the bat, if you take the ‘ifs’ out of the chorus, it’s a statement – ‘you can crank it up, you can sing along.’”

SHANE: “That verse is so airtight lyrically, but that chorus melody needs to be a little punched up.”

GRIFFEN PALMER – Pickering, Ontario, Canada

Florida Georgia Line was his first concert – “It would be a pretty full circle moment if they were to record my song.”

  • Original song – “Second Guessing”

ESTER: “Every woman wants to hear a man say those lyrics.”

TYLER: “You know he’s a Nashville songwriter when you look at the title and think it’s one thing and then he brings it around and does a little twist on it.”

SHANE: “Of all the songs we’ve heard on this show, from the beginning, from both seasons, I’ve never been mad at a hook. Luckily, I’ve been in the room when somebody like Kacey Musgraves walks in and says, ‘I want to write a song called Space Cowboy, but it’s “you can have your space, cowboy.”’ And you’re like, thank you Jesus. You just said that in front of me. That is out of this world. How has this not been written? Congratulations on that.”

After the four songwriters had performed, Tyler and Brian narrowed down the four to three.

SHAWN paired with Ester
LUKR paired with Ryan
GRIFFEN paired with Shane
VICTORIA was eliminated

GRIFFEN and Shane worked on making “Second Guessing” more waltzy, made the hook bigger, adding piano and drums.

BRIAN: “It is powerful when that chorus comes in there.”

SHANE: “I love this song. I am so proud to have worked on this with you.”

TYLER: I love what you did with the production, the guitar licks you added. I think the tweaks that were done in the chorus really helped solidify that chorus. This is Nashville now. You guys nailed it.”

LUKR worked with Ryan to do a rewrite of “Hopes High” to give it a more positive feel. They also changed the name to “What You’re Puttin’ Down.”

BRIAN: “That’s like an anthem love jam.”

SHANE: “‘Between the tan lines’ is really incredible.”

TYLER: “It was really cool to watch the transformation from what you brought the other day to what you and Ryan were able to do in the studio.”

SHAWN worked with Ester to make “Ain’t Going Nowhere” to lift the melody and rearrange the concept. Changed the title to “Lean On.”

BRIAN: “Upgrade city!”

TYLER: “It all felt so new and so fresh. The production is really cool, the lyrics were really cool and well done.”

BRIAN: “With what we gave y’all in terms of direction for our record and energy, it sounds like y’all nailed it.”

Following the performances Brian and Tyler chose to record and release Griffen’s romantic love song, “Second Guessing.”

Florida Georgia Line’s rendition of “Second Guessing” is now available wherever you download or stream music, along with the lyric video.

Next week’s Songland welcomes Boys II Men.