90's Country

Album: Yet to be titled (2018)
  • Penned by Walker Hayes with Shane McAnally and LYRX (Gabby Mooney, the sister of Shay Mooney of Dan + Shay), this throwback song tells a love story through the titles of classic country songs from the 1990s. Five songs are referenced in the first verse. How many can you spot?

    Strawberry wine on your lips got me amazed
    How 'bout you let the sky, oh boy, take you away?
    Gimme that wink, I'ma give it right back
    You know you like it, you love it, you want some more of that

    They are:

    "Strawberry Wine" by Deana Carter
    "Amazed" by Lonestar
    "Cowboy Take Me Away" by Dixie Chicks
    "Wink" by Neal McCoy
    "I Like It, I Love It" by Tim McGraw
  • The song is jam-packed with a total of 22 1990s country song titles within its two minutes and 52 seconds running time. Hayes explained to CMT why he decided to tell a love story through some of the decade's most famous hits.

    "I feel like, when we are young especially, while we are experiencing so many 'firsts,' when songs move us, we recall exactly where we were when we heard them. Also, the experience of hearing a song for the first time has so much to do with the emotions it will evoke in us for the rest of our lives," he said. "So, "90's Country" is my tribute to the musical time period that moved me the most. I listened to '90s country with my mother in the car driving to the beach, with my father on the Waffle House jukebox, and with my brother in his truck driving to baseball games. These songs are very nostalgic."
  • The song came to life during a writing session between Hayes and LYRX. At that stage it was just a poem without any melody or beat. The singer had hoped to include the song on his 2017 studio album, Boom, but was unable to complete it in time for that record's release.

    When Hayes and his wife Laney's seventh child, Oakleigh Klover died hours after birth on June 6, 2018, the months of grief that followed, informed the kind of music he wanted to make next. Hayes decided, in the wake of Oakleigh's death, that he wanted to release something light.

    "Waking up from that, it just changed my priorities, to say the least," Hayes admitted to The Boot. "As I began to get back on the road, I began to be very focused on, 'Hey, it's time for this song.'"

    So, Hayes began refining "90's Country" with Shane McAnally. In doing so he found he had to be ruthless which '90s classics to include in the song. "I wanna go up to so many artists and say, 'I'm sorry,'" Hayes said. "I mean, Travis Tritt? I will die disappointed that his songs aren't in there. And Jo Dee Messina."


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