Six Songs That’ll Make You Change Your Mind About Country

When I say yee, you say haw.

It seems within pop culture that the go-to music genre to hate is country, and I truly don’t understand why. I understand that some of the traditional country artists like Willie Nelson and George Strait may not be so appealing to the millennials of today, but the contemporary country music coming out today are producing banger after banger after banger, and I feel if people gave it a chance, they might actually come to liking it.

From artists like Kacey Musgraves to Chris Lane, Lady Antebellum to Little Big Town, there is a touch of country out there for everyone; you just need to know where to find it.

And that’s where I come in. I’m going to point you in that right direction so you can #GiveCountryMusicAChance and I guarantee that you’ll like at least one of the songs on this list.

Without further ado, here are six country songs that’ll make you change your mind on the genre.

1. High Horse by Kacey Musgraves

If you know me, it should come to no surprise to you that my first entry on this list is a Kacey Musgraves song because I stan the absolute fuck out of her. I told my hip-hop, RnB and rap-heavy brother to give this song a go and he ended up loving it!

High Horse comes from Kacey’s latest album, Golden Hour, which won a shit ton of awards for how iconic it is; this track is country infused with disco, catchy pop tunes, and is just overall amazing. If you want to dip your toe into country music, this is a good song to start off with.

2. If I Know Me by Morgan Wallen

I have to thank my handsome friend Faz for this recommendation as he was the one that introduced me to this ultimate banger. I added it to my playlist as soon as he showed it to me and I have not regretted it at all.

This song comes from Wallen’s debut album If I Know Me – which should give you a hint that this album was named after this iconic piece of art – and features a knee-tapping beat, easy to follow lyrics, and some impressive vocals from the man himself. If you’re into pop male artists, then you’ll probably like this song.

3. Take Back Home Girl by Chris Lane ft. Tori Kelly

Are you a fan of a love ballad? Then you’ll like this one!

This song was my introduction into Chris Lane, who has quickly become one of my favourite artists. Featuring some unsurprisingly stunning vocals from Tori Kelly, Take Back Home Girl comes off Lane’s most recent album, Laps Around the Sun; this song is a beautiful love story that your parents will love with a heavy RnB influence on the otherwise country song.

4. Tennessee Whiskey by Chris Stapleton

The fact that Chris Stapleton won a shit ton of awards with his debut album Traveller, which this iconic song comes from, should give you a fair idea of how great this song is.

A remake of Dean Dillon and Linda Hargrove’s hit, Tennessee Whiskey features the (pardon the pun) smooth vocals of Stapleton with his unique and powerful voice. If you’re into blues and lounge music, then give this one a go.

5. Snapback by Old Dominion

A song that was definitely written about Nikki Bella and her iconic snapbacks my introduction to Old Dominion, Snapback is country’s version of someone like Trey Songz singing about how beautiful this girl is and how much he wants to date her.

With a catchy chorus, and lyrics vividly that describe Nikki Bella the woman in question, this pop-infused country song has a laidback, easy-going upbeat vibe that could turn even the most anti-country person into a believer.

6. You Look Good by Lady Antebellum

The lead song from their seventh album, Heart BreakYou Look Good was the reinvigoration that Lady Antebellum needed in their career after their somewhat-success of their previous album, 747.

You Look Good has the unsurprisingly amazing and contrasting vocals of Charles Kelley and Hillary Scott, but also has a new funky jazz influence that Lady Antebellum haven’t really channeled before. This daring change was a huge success as this is easily one of my favourite Lady A songs of all time.

So if you’re looking to add a bit of country spice to your playlist, but don’t want to get into the hardcore country style of music (just yet), give these songs a listen and I guarantee you’ll be playing the country music channel more.

– by The Black Widow

Artist of the Month: Rose Falcon

If you haven’t heard the name Rose Falcon before, by the end of this article, you’re going to wish you did.

Widow’s Lure will now have a monthly column featuring an artist of my choice, whether they be a big mainstream name or someone no one has ever really heard of. These pieces may have comments from the artist themselves, or will just be me speaking about how much I adore them. Stay tuned as a wide variety of artists will be featured on my website.

The first artist to be featured: Rose Falcon.

You can tell just by looking at her that she's different, can't you? (SOURCE: Rose Falcon's official website)

You can tell just by looking at her that she’s different, can’t you? (SOURCE: Rose Falcon’s official website)

This beautiful young lady has grown up in the country music industry; her mother passed away at a young age from breast cancer and so her father was forced to raise her by himself, and the singer-songwriter did so by taking her on tours with him. It was as if country music was meant to be in her blood. As if taking a page out of her father’s book, Rose grew up to become a singer-songwriter herself; some of her songs have been performed by the likes of Faith Hill and Lady Antebellum, and judging by how big those names are, it’s natural to assume that Rose is a superstar in her own right.

Falcon’s first album entitled Rose Falcon was released in 2003 while she was the ripe age of 19. Yes. She was 19 when her first album was released. Let that sink in for a while. Fast forward a decade and in 2013 andFalcon has released two separate EP’s, first 19th Avenue, the EP followed closely by  19th Avenue, the EP Volume 2.

Oh, and did I mention she’s married to country singer Rodney Atkins? So you can jolly well call her Rose Falcon Atkins.

Talking songs specifically on both of her latest EPs, Rose has a unique sound with a deep almost husky voice that is unmistakenably hers. Her song Guitar Man – which, for the record, is my personal favourite – perfectly illustrates what it’s like to be in a relationship to a musician who’s on the road for most of the year. The song which is evidently describing her relationship with Rodney as one would assume, the deep and soulful lyrics could make even the most concrete stronghold of a person break down a tiny bit. The emotions of this song are only made that more vivid by Rose’s soulful vocals.

The chorus of this slow, sweet song is what really gets to me. Brace yourself. “He comes and he goes, he’s here, then he’s gone. Says he’s tired of the road, but the show must go on. He’s all mine for a week, then he’s gone with the band. Sings that he’s always leaving with my heart in his hands. It sure is lonely loving a guitar man.” This one is for all the young girls or guys out there who think the life of a musician’s wife/husband is glamorous because, as Falcon clearly describes in this song, it isn’t all fun and games. But, as she sings “The moment that he holds me, it’s worth all the lonesome nights. I forget the heartache when he whispers that he loves me and sings to me the sweetest lullaby,” suggests that it’s not all rainy days being the lover of a guitar man.

The most popular song from her volume one EP, Thinkin’ ‘Bout You, which has the same soothing tune that has almost become Rose’s signature sound, features a more upbeat vibe than that Guitar Man. This track tells the story about Rose and a former flame of hers; they have gone on their separate ways and have found new partners, but, for some reason, Rose cannot stop thinking about this man. “I would have thought by now these feelings would be gone. I guess my heart must have a mind all of its own“, suggests that getting over a former flame is harder than it really ought to be. This song takes on a new angle of the typical love song, where she’s obviously developed strong feelings for this man and is having trouble getting over them, even though she knows she should. Those darn feelings.

Rose’s signature sound is what really makes her stand out among all the other young fresh female faces in her genre. Her slow, relaxed and almost laid-back song is what makes her Rose Falcon, and it’s what caused her to be the very first featured Artist of the Month on Widow’s Lure.

Recommended tracks
Guitar Man from 19th Avenue, the EP
Give In To Me from 19th Avenue, the EP

Another great thing about Rose is that her music can appeal to those whose interest doesn’t lie with the country music genre. Her music is easy to listen to and I can easily recommend it to those who dig blues, jazz or even pop music. Check out her latest EPs and some of her older music. You will not regret it!

– by Noah La’ulu

Confessions of a Thefthead

More specifically, should I say, confessions of a fangirling Thefthead.

On Saturday March 15 2014, I had the ultimate privilege of attending my second CMC Rocks the Hunter country music festival. Because of education engagements on Friday and work responsibilities on Sunday, I was only able to attend the three-day music festival on Saturday. That was completely fine by me. Why? Because my idols, Love and Theft, were performing on Saturday. Sure, country music greats like Gretchen Wilson were performing on Saturday as well, but I was no where near as excited for her as I was for Love and Theft.

Stephen and Eric, in the flesh.

Stephen and Eric, in the flesh.

I can’t even remember when my fandom for Love and Theft even started. I just remember one moment I was Youtubing some of their stuff and listening to it, and the next, I had both of their albums (two copies of one) and a custom Love and Theft iPhone case. My friends can tell you that they are tired of seeing me gram pictures of Eric and Stephen (the men who comprise this awesome musical duo) instead of actual Instagram things, like pictures of what I had to eat that day, or awkward full length mirror selfies of my OOTD.

Love and Theft were scheduled to perform at last year’s CMC Rocks the Hunter, but due to circumstances – Eric’s gorgeous son Camden William Gunderson came a bit early – they were unable to play. I had bought them presents to give to them at the festival so this was a big blow to me. However, when you’re a Thefthead, where there’s a will, there’s a way. I posted to every LNT social media outlet I could until I found out their PO box, so I shipped their presents to them with a handwritten letter with one small request to let me know that they got their presents. What I got in return, however, was a picture of them with their gifts, holding my letter, and an e-mail saying that my package had made their day. When I saw this, I kid you not – I was running around the house, screaming and saying “OH MY GOD, NO THEY DIDN’T! OH MY GOD NO THEY DID NOT!”

The picture they sent me, with my letter in Stephen's hand.

The picture they sent me, with my letter in Stephen’s hand.

So, in 2014, this was my first time seeing them perform ever. Ever. I mean, like, ever. Needless to say, I was acting like a scared chook running for its life. With an extremely high pitched voice.

My best friend and I rocked up about a hour and a half before the boys were to perform. Why? Because I wanted to get a good spot at the front of the mosh and didn’t care how long I had to stand there for it. Fortunately for me, we got good spots at the front. The sun was blazing and I was in painted on jeans and cowboy boots, but I didn’t care. What was actually two hours later, the boys graced us with their presence. I screamed. I jumped. I waved. I screamed some more. I jumped some more.

My personalised autographed LNT merch.

My personalised autographed LNT merch.

All bias aside, Love and Theft were amazing. SIMPLY AMAZING. They were everything I ever expected them to be PLUS more. They sung several of their hit songs, a couple of covers, and interesting “duet” of sorts with Blackjack Billy, and Stephen even busted out a few Eminem lyrics to Lose Yourself – the latter of which can be found at this link. Excuse the shaking. I was a bit excited.

As I am familiar with how CMC Rocks works, I knew that right after their performance, they would be heading up to the CD tent to do a meet-and-greet and autograph signing. As soon as they had finished their set – which included running up and down past the gate slapping hands with the fans (me included, which provoked a “OMG I TOUCHED THEIR HANDS” comment) – my BFFL and I literally sprinted up the hill to the CD tent. We were still very far back in the line but it doesn’t matter. I was going to meet my idols for the very first time! Like last year, I bought Eric and Stephen a bag of presents. The catch? I left it in the car. In painted on jeans and cowboy boots, I sprinted to my car to pick up their presents and rush back to the line, and after all that cardio, we hadn’t moved in the line. It’ll be worth it, I thought to myself positively.

Two hours (LITERALLY) later in the line and I was at the front. CMC officials were coming around selling copies of their self-titled albums because they would only take a picture with you if you had official merch to sign, and I proudly boasted my three Love and Theft CDs from home. Bitches came prepared. I was at the front of the line. It was my turn. I literally felt as if I had to throw up because I was that excited. They turned around. I put on my best genuine smile and said “I bought presents for you guys.” Both Eric and Stephen responded with genuine gratitude and Stephen even hugged me. YES. STEPHEN BARKER LILES HUGGED ME. Stephen asked me what I bought them and I spat out a nervous rant on “how I didn’t want them to open it in front of me in case they didn’t like it and I saw their reactions and died.” Eric offered me a more reserved handshake and thanked me. Because of this, Stephen wanted to personalise my autographs for me so he asked my name. I replied with “Noah” whilst trying to remember how to stand up. I took my photo with them. Eric shook my hand again and both me thanked me for my gifts. We walked off so the people behind us could get their turn.

Serious contender for best day of my life.

Serious contender for best day of my life.

I was shaking. My best friend had to take the merch and my phone off me because I couldn’t hold it. I was literally shaking. “Oh my god, I just met Love and Theft. Oh my god, Stephen hugged me. Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god.” The teenage girl in me had risen.

In what was originally supposed to be a short memoir of sorts, has turned into a 1000+ word spiel. I don’t know, I guess it’s what happens when you are an ultimate fan. Or in my case, the no#1 Thefthead in Australia (and the world!)

Oh, and did I mention Eric commented on my Instagram picture thanking me for the gifts? You can only imagine my screaming reply.

– by Noah La’ulu

Happy Straya Day mate!

I know our beloved country day is wrapping up but I still thought I’d get in and wish everyone on behalf of Solstice Satisfaction a solid Australia Day, even if you live in another country.

As SolSat is based in Australia and the team are located in different cities, I can happily say that we are the fortunate ones who get to live in this wonderful country where you can say what you want, believe what you want and so on and so forth. Unless you’re calling a cop “a pig”. That is an arrestable offence.

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I sincerely hope you all had a beer or two, put on your best green and gold outfits – or red, white and blue outfits, as it were – and spent the day with loved ones. Just as a quick reminder to some who may have forgotten, here are some of the best things about being Australian:

What are some of the best things about being Australian…

[x] We are generally stereotyped as one of the most calm, collected and laidback cultures in the world. Why? Because we’re awesome, obviously.
[x] We have our own cool way of speaking English, called speaking “Strayan”. If you need a refresher on how to speak Strayan, we’ve got you covered.
[x] In Australia, we call mates “c-word that rhymes with punt” and we call c-word that rhymes with punts “mate”. Who else is cool enough to do that?
[x] Sprinting in thongs. If you can’t do it, you’re not Australian.
[x] We know that you do not actually cook shrimp on the barbie.
[x] Going to the shops in a daggy tank top, footy shorts and thongs, and it is completely socially acceptable.

Now to end this quick post, here are some of the few awesome Australia Day pictures I found on my Facebook timeline.

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Happy Straya Day!

– by Noah La’ulu