Shoot Me Straight

Album: Port Saint Joe (2018)

Songfacts®:

  • The first single from Brothers Osborne's Port Saint Joe album, this whiskey-fueled rocker finds Osborne asking a girl to drop him fast and hard. The song was released on January 5, 2018.

    "We thought this lead single off of our new record would be a really great representation of just kind of what's to come on this new record, but also was kind of a good little second story to 'It Ain't My Fault,'" said lead vocalist TJ Osborne. "The song really being about the double entendre of just the saying, 'shoot me straight,' 'give it to me straight,' but also make it burn like a shot of whiskey and shoot me straight. It's one of the songs that kind of ties the last record into this one."
  • The album version clocks in just shy of seven minutes and concludes with an epic John Osborne guitar solo. TJ Osborne told The Boot: "This song was probably the most risky single to lead the album with. I don't know why we were attracted to the hard road. I don't know why that happens - maybe because I'm always a fan of an underdog."

    "We decided to lead with this song, knowing it would be difficult considering that the full version is six and a half minutes long, and we thought we might wake up the next morning and find that no one wanted to play it," he added. "But, we knew the song was different, and we knew it was us who had recorded it, and we trusted that. We like difference. We like stirring up the pot."
  • "Shoot Me Straight" started off as a ballad. TJ Osborne explained: "We thought the song was good, but not anything unique or memorable. [Separately,] there was this lick we'd been throwing around for several writes. John had the idea of just marrying the two together, and at that point, we knew instantly that would be a song we'd record."
  • The Port Saint Joe record was recorded in - yep - Port Saint Joe, a coastal Florida town. The pair holed up in a beach house there for a couple of weeks. "We just played music that felt good to us," said John Osborne. "We recorded them all live. We left all of the mistakes in there. We left it nice and raw. We tracked 10 songs."
  • John Osborne recalled in a Reddit AMA: "We wrote for a few years leading up to the recording of Port Saint Joe. Logistically it was tough to get all of the equipment to a beach house down a sandy road, made no sense at all, we had to clean sand out of the equipment for weeks but wouldn't have traded the experience for anything."
  • The song was recorded live in front of a bunch of friends who came down to Port Saint Joe to hang out.

    "We had just been on the road for months. We had taken a bus from a gig to Port Saint Joe and unloaded our gear off of it, so we were kind of in the mindset of playing like a band and that's what [producer Jay Joyce] wanted to capture," recalled John Osborne. "And 'Shoot Me Straight' literally is just us jamming in a room. We had tracked that song a few different times over the two-week course of staying there, and one of the last nights we were there we had some friends all come down from Nashville and we just set up in the room. It was late at night. We had all been drinking and partying a little bit, and he wanted us to get in front of like our friends and jam, and that was the take."

    "He wouldn't let us fix anything. I'm glad that he didn't because music these days it's so perfect. I mean you can go back and fix everything all you want until the cows come home, but this record is a snapshot of just what happened," the guitarist added. "The four minutes in time — this is what happened and that's it. And some of our favorite music listening to is that. It's just a live moment that was captured in time and you can't really recreate that."
  • The unconventional visual serves as part mockumentary around the difficulty of creating a music video concept. The clip was directed by Wes Edwards and Ryan Silver, the same team behind the duo's video for "It Ain't My Fault."

    "This idea genuinely spawned out of us not being able to come to agreement on what we wanted the video to be about," said TJ.

    "After weeks of back and forth emails, conference calls, treatment pitches, etc., we came to the conclusion that we needed to make a video about, well, not making a video. It turned out to be so damn fun," added John.

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