Record Year

Album: Mr. Misunderstood (2015)
Charted: 44

Songfacts®:

  • Eric Church's woman has left him - but instead of finding comfort from his broken heart in another woman, the singer finds solace in his record player. The breakup has enabled Church to renew a love affair with his three-foot stack of vinyl and instead of sitting in silence and turning "this house into a jail," he's "having a record year."
  • The records name-checked in the lyrics are John Lee Hooker's "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer," Stevie Wonder's Songs In The Key of Life and Willie Nelson's Red Headed Stranger. George Jones, Waylon Jennings and James Brown are also referenced.
  • Eric Church wrote the song with his with long-time banjo player and guitarist Jeff Hyde. Their other collaborations include "Springsteen" (along with Ryan Tyndell), "Smoke a Little Smoke" (alongside other bandmate Driver Williams) and "Cold One" (along with Lynn Hutton).
  • Eric Church said this song was the starting point for Mr. Misunderstood. "Well, it was kind of the start of the album for me. I mean, when we put out the album, it was a surprise and 'Mr. Misunderstood' was the first song, 'cause it was the album title. But for me, the record always started with 'Record Year,'" he explained.

    "I'm a vinyl fan back before it was in vogue, like it is now, but I can remember, there's a line in the song that talks about 'slowly planning my survival/in a three-foot stack of vinyl,' and I remember, whatever it is that I had to get over or get past or get through, I remember records being my refuge during that time. It was a song, and it IS a song that I'm proud of and I think it'll be one of the bigger ones in our career."
  • The song's music video was directed by John Peets and Reid Long, the guys behind Church's "Mr. Misunderstood" clip. There are other similarities between the two other visuals, as Church and his band are back in the same old abandoned schoolhouse, and McKinley James Sway joins them once again.

    During the performance scenes, Church can be seen playing his uniquely designed and distinctively customized signature edition of the Gibson Hummingbird acoustic guitar, aptly dubbed by Church as Hummingbird Dark.
  • It was Jeff Hyde who came up with the original idea for the song. Eric Church recalled to The Boot:

    "I've written a lot of songs with a lot of people, and very rarely do you come up against an idea that's unique, that you think there's no way that it is unique. I remember when Jeff had the idea for 'Record Year,' I thought, 'Well, it had to have been done in this way,' and was shocked to learn that it hadn't been done."

Comments: 3

  • Jon Quinlan from Oklahoma CityI was misinformed and lied to regarding my comments below. This song was written solely by Jeff and my origional post here was wrong. I did not mean any harm and I apologize for this. It's a great song and great work by Jeff, Eric and their entire team.
  • Jon Quinlan from Oklahoma CityTo clarify my comment above, I'm claiming that the woman co-wrote this song. I'm not claiming plagiarism occured by anyone at EMI.
  • Jon Quinlan from Oklahoma CityA woman by the name of Marlana "Lanie" LeRoy Quinlan from Midwest City, Oklahoma actually wrote this song and Jeff Hyde used it, and made a few changes after she signed an affidavit of release. She should be recognized for her talent.
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