Brad Paisley Reminisces About 'Magical' Time in Country Music

Country music has certainly gone through an evolution over the last few decades, in both sound and lyric. And while the genre is definitely growing, perhaps no one is more nostalgic for the days gone by than Brad Paisley. But instead of mourning for what once was, the singer penned a song called "Bucked Off," for his next album, which includes everything he was missing in the genre.

"The reason we picked this song, called 'Bucked Off,' it's a throwback for me to the reason I wanted to do country music," Paisley explained on SiriusXM's The Highway. "I came of age during the golden era for us, which was the late '80s, early '90s. And in that time period, which to me is so magical, you had so many different things on the radio, but one of the things that was so consistent was the rodeo songs, and the metaphors and the analogies to that way of life. I realized as I was writing songs for this record, I had never done one of those."

Paisley drew on the inspiration of one of his biggest musical idols when writing "Bucked Off."

"For me the peak and the pinnacle artist in our format is George Strait," Paisley said. "I wanted to be, all of us wanted to be – we've all gone through our George Strait phase.... You see this guy who is like class and did great music and this sort of way of life, and I just see him with that graceful ride off into the sunset, tipping his hat."

Even in the music for "Bucked Off," Paisley combined both the traditional music he loved, with the current country sound.

"I feel like what I loved about when we started the record process was, we went in there and I cut a demo first with my band that was way down the middle traditional, just straight down the pike, and sounded like it was from 1983, a lot of it," Paisley said. "What we ended up with I think that's magical is, if you turn this song on in the verse, it's the countriest thing on the radio. It feels like you're in Marina del Rey... And then if you turn on the chorus, it's about the rocking-est thing on the radio right now."

"It feels like somehow I meshed these things that I love about country music and what I've always done," he continued. "It's what I wanted to lead with, because the other things is, I'm not trying to save the world this. It's like, let's rock out and have a good time."

"Bucked Off" is from an upcoming, still-untitled new album, with Dann Huff, a veteran producer Paisley has, perhaps surprisingly, never worked with before. But like Paisley, Huff is an accomplished guitarist, who happens to be nominated for a CMA Award for Musician of the Year, a title he has claimed a total of three times already.

"I've been working on new music for a little while," Paisley revealed. "I've cut a few songs. I'm in the studio with Dann Huff, who isan amazing guy, and an amazing producer. It's the first time I've worked with him... It's the first time I've been in the studio where the producer tries to get more out of me, and usually my thing is, 'Well fine, you play it.' I can't do that now."

No word yet when Paisley's next set of tunes will be released. Paisley will return next week, for the 11th time, to co-host the CMA Awards with Carrie Underwood. The 2018 CMA Awards will air live from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.


Photo Credit: Getty images/Mat Hayward