Chicken Fried

Album: The Foundation (2008)
Charted: 20

Songfacts®:

  • This was first recorded by The Zac Brown Band in 2003 for their 2005 album Home Grown and re-recorded three years later for The Foundation. The 2008 version was their first single to enter the Hot 100.
  • Frontman Zac Brown explained this celebration of a rural lifestyle to the national radio show GAC Nights: Live From Nashville: "The song is basically just a list of all the things that I love. Pretty much, this is who we are. And granted it was four or five years ago when we finished the song and we wrote it, but that's the roots, and basically it's like the more we get along and the older we get, there's very few songs that you can say 'I believe in,' and those are the things that I want to write about and sing about. And that was just one of those things that was captured in that song."
  • In 2006 The Lost Trailers had a minor Country hit with their version of this tune. Its climb up the chart was halted by Zac Brown's change of mind about licensing the song to BNA Records and its consequent withdrawal from radio.
  • Brown penned the song with his usual songwriting partner Wyatt Durette. The frontman explained to AOL's The Boot how they came to write this song: "Wyatt was a bartender in a club that I used to play at all the time in Atlanta, Dixie Tavern. We were hanging out one night, and he was like, 'Well, I kind of write music and write some songs.' The first time we ever sat down to write some songs we wrote 'Whatever It Is.' We knew we had something special. He had a piece called 'Chicken Fried' that he had written a long time ago. He sang it to me, and I thought it could be a really good song. We made a list of things that mattered to us and then things that are characteristic of the South. We put every one of those things on that list in the song."
  • Brown explained to The Boot that he penned the song during an anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, which were an inspiration for this song: "It was right around September 11. I was living with a Marine friend of mine. I was realizing how fortunate we are to be free, travel and to play music or whatever it is that you do as an American that there is a cost that other people have paid for us to be able to do those things and enjoy all the simple things. That's where the patriotic line of the song came from. Sometimes all of the little things get taken for granted and you forget about them. They're the most important things in life. It was a reminder to myself and a reminder to everybody else to not take the little things for granted or the simple pleasures that really matter."
  • Some time before this became the Zac Brown Band's breakthrough hit, Zac pitched the song to Alan Jackson to record, but his fellow Georgia native turned it down. "I had just recorded several songs about food, and I just thought I should not record another one at the time," Jackson recalled to The Boot. "I thought it was a good song, and I was happy when they had their own hit with it."

Comments: 4

  • Marilyn from 18707Just listened to the Bare Necessities (The Jungle Book); drawn to songs that get to the nitty gritty of the things in life that matter.
  • Megan from Stevenson, AlDang! Me and buddies sing this on the bus on the way back from football games! I love band nerds:)
  • Randy from Houghton Lake, MiI'm a yankee from Michigan but damn this is good music. I love this down home style of country music.
  • Jonathan from Paoli, InThis song is about Crawford County. When in doubt crack a beer and sing the song. You know the lyrics.
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