Cover Me Up

Album: Southeastern (2013)
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Songfacts®:

  • Jason Isbell finished recording Southeastern two days before his wedding to fiddle player Amanda Shires. The album's opening track finds him asking Shires to cover him with love.

    It's cold in this house and I ain't going out to chop wood
    So cover me up and know you're enough
    To use me for good
  • Amanda Shires is also the woman who got Isbell sober.

    Put your faith to the test when I tore off your dress
    In Richmond on high
    But I sobered up and I swore off that stuff
    Forever this time


    Isbell had discussed getting sober extensively but it was only in February 2012, when Amanda Shires initiated an intervention with a couple of others that he gave up booze. Isbell's last night drinking before getting sober was spent in Richmond, Virginia; he got trashed on moonshine after finishing a private show.
  • This won the Song Of The Year award at the 2014 Americana Music Awards.
  • The Boot named this their Top Country Song of the 2010s. They wrote: "'Cover Me Up' features a simple melody and heart-wrenching lyrics, paired with Isbell's powerful voice to create a tear-jerking tune that's impossible to dislike."
  • Despite the personal nature of the track, "Cover Me Up" has been covered by several country artists. Morgan Wallen started playing the song just for himself as a warmup backstage for his voice before being persuaded to perform it. Eventually he released it as a single accompanied by a short film directed by Justin Clough. Wallen later included it on his 2021 Dangerous: The Double Album record.
  • Morgan Wallen's version peaked at #52, earning Isbell a healthy amount of royalties. However, after a video came to light of the singer using a racial slur, Isbell felt compelled to donate his payments to the Nashville division of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

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