By Aaron Wagner
Everyone knows the Luke Combs story by now, but I want to focus on one aspect when it comes to the new batch of songs he released.
Luke’s What You See Is What You Get album won him an ACM Award this year and is also nominated for the same for the upcoming CMA Awards. This past weekend he released it as a deluxe version, playing off the original title by calling it What You See Ain’t Always What You Get.
Five new songs. Luke writing each of them.
That led me to take a closer listen to the lyrics because while Luke gets credit for having #1 songs, we sometimes forget that he writes each and every one of his songs. He takes common folk storylines and weaves clever lines that are so relatable and everyday speak, which makes his music all the more appealing.
“Cold As You”
The honky tonk sawdust dance floor
A neon, five o’clock, pro clock
Plenty damn many when you want one more
A song about getting done wrong, which leads to heading down to your favorite watering hole for a cold one. We all know a place like this. A place that is our second home, especially when we need to get away.
“The Other Guy”
And his heart still takes a beatin’
Just livin’ with your leavin’
Yeah, it might look like I’m doin’ alright
But you should see the other guy
A great concept for a story about a guy who is trying to move on but is still dealing with the hurt. He puts on a brave face, but that’s not how the real him is taking it.
“My Kinda Folk”
My kinda folk buy beer on Friday
Get right on Saturday night
We’re all good people
Spend Sunday under steeple
Come Monday we’ll be right on time
Luke has anthems for the common man and the working man. It might sound so simple, but a life about working hard Monday-Friday, having fun with friends on the weekend, and still making it to church is so relatable to many and resonates well.
You make sacrifices every night and day
Never hear the crowd scream your name
But there’s a smile and a hand to hold when the show is through
This might be my favorite of the new ones. This whole song has so many great lines that hit home the message of sacrifices made so someone you love can chase their dreams. It’s Luke’s story but I think most people can point to something similar in their lives.
“Forever After All”
A cold beer’s got 12 ounces
A good truck’s got maybe three hundred thousand
You only get so much until it’s gone
Duracells in a Maglite
A needle drop on a 45
Are the kinda things that only last so long
The chorus definitely makes the song a future hit but it’s the way the song starts out that hooks you in. As a listener you get the concept pretty early on, setting you up to truly appreciate the flip he’s going to make in the chorus. Specific descriptors like the phrases he uses in the intro verse is Luke’s specialty.