You know the old guys that get bitter about being shown up by the young guns? I have a sneaking suspicion that there will be some irritated folks out there when all of the Texas "youngsters" start to eat into the mainstream machine market share. If you have any sort of appetite for quality country music, you may be familiar with some names such as Dalton Domino, Randall King, Cleto Cordero, and Mr. Parker McCollum. All these artists have worked to hone their skills and re-imagine a neo-traditionalist style of country music exclusive to each of them. Parker in particular has risen to gain some serious recognition in a relatively short period of time. Hopefully he's used to it, because the first installment off his album Probably Wrong, is going to most definitely make some waves.
Let's not cheapen the hard work that McCollum has invested into his music journey. This kid works his ass off and doesn't rely on his model-like appearance to pave his way. Despite being an obviously popular crush among the Texas and Okie gals, he is able to prevent that from getting to his head. I shared his music last week and someone even mentioned they almost skipped over it because of the cover. If there’s one thing Mr. Rogers taught us, it’s to never judge a book by it’s cover, my friends.
McCollum's 2015 release, The Limestone Kid worked to put him on the map and gain a large passionate following. Songs like Meet You in The Middle and All Day provided the initial hook for Parker. I really enjoyed the album with it's country twang and roots rock touches throughout.
So that brings us to Probably Wrong: Session One. I applaud the obvious choice to split this album up. In modern music, people have short attention spans. He explained his intentions on 95.9 The Ranch – mentioning how he wanted to give his younger listeners time to digest his music. Let's face it – it is hard for people in our generation to focus on things. I am in the minority for being someone that enjoys listening to full albums.
First impressions of the album were how well the Conroe, Texas native managed to tell a story all the while maintaining an upbeat southern rock-esque delivery. The style of Memphis Rain is undoubtedly catchy but shares the wisdom of never looking to force change in life. You never know how long you will have someone around in your life and it’s important to enjoy the time that you have with them. While we’re out working to chase our dreams, we have to make sacrifices to often accomplish what we seek. Don’t forget those around you as we are all mortal. Life is finite.
McCollum continues his journey by reflecting on the all-too-familiar feeling of one’s hometown. He, like many of us, have mixed feelings about where we come from. In many ways we enjoy the familiarity of where we were raised - our friends, the roads, the hang-out joints. But we also look at it with a sense of resentment at times. We feel trapped and unable to spread our wings and experience new places and faces. This song hits home with me as I believe (and told by so many) that I should have been born in a state like Texas. The best part of living in America is I can go there if I want. We aren’t forced to live anywhere if we aren’t happy.
The first taste of this release we got was I Can’t Breathe which was co-written with Micky Braun (Micky and the Motorcars). It’s a song that pulls at your heartstrings and encourages you think about the sacrifices of the life of a road warrior. I’ve touched on subjects like this frequently because it is something that comes with the territory of not just being an artist, but anyone that has a profession that keeps them away from family daily. It’s human nature to want to feel loved and be surrounded with those we c are about. As we attend concerts and even buy products at the store, we aren’t thinking about those playing or delivering our merchandise. Someone out there is feeling torn with chasing their dreams or job - knowing that they are doing what they want/have to, yet still feel an emptiness.
So now that we have our first release off Probably Wrong, I think it’s safe to say that this album will be a grand-slam for Mr. McCollum. Watch out mainstreamers, because this kid is coming and he’s coming in quick.
Just a Massachusetts guy supporting Texas and other independent country/Americana artists.
Check out my spotify for good tunes!