Toby Keith released his new song "Old School" on Friday, June 25, and fans might notice a few familiar names in the credits. The song was written by Maren Morris, Ryan Hurd and Brett Tyler years ago and co-produced by Keith with Kenny Greenberg and celebrates living in a small town.
"When I first heard the demo, it reminded me of Steve Miller," Keith Shared in a press release, via iHeartRadio, before referencing his previous hit "I Wanna Talk About Me." "But it had a little bit of a rap to it - not unlike the can of worms I opened years ago with 'I Wanna Talk About Me.' Then it's got the coolest melodic waterfall and I was like, 'Yeah, I gotta cut this.'" The song's chorus reads, "We're old school, small town stickin' around / Just like folks used to, good ol' boys and girls / Just fallin' in love, livin' the life, yeah / Middle of nowhere feels about right / Keepin' it old school, just the way we like."
"'Old School' would be more of a mindset," Keith said. "I still go to old diners, I still live in the same town I grew up in. We still get high on fishing, stuff like that. It's more of a state of mind... we could be in Connecticut or we can be in Oregon. We're looking for the mom and pop diner. We're not looking for the steakhouse. That's the big chain or the big shift we're looking for. We're looking for grease dog. So, it's more of a mindset instead of just looking for things. I love old road houses and it's the simple things in life. That's what I love about this song too."
Along with "Old School," Keith released a second new song this month when he joined Brantley Gilbert and HARDY for "The Worst Country Song of All Time." "As far as Toby goes — it's freakin' Toby Keith!" Gilbert said in a statement. "He's written some of the best and put out some of my favorite country songs of all time. So having him on it is kind of like that final seal of approval."
Keith is also preparing to release another song titled "Happy Birthday America" around the Fourth of July, which he wrote while on a boat watching a fireworks display during last year's holiday and a friend wished him a happy Fourth of July. Keith responded, "Happy birthday, America. Whatever's left of you." "It had been a screwed up 18 months," he recalled. "I was seeing both sides having concern over the end of democracy. We've fought and divided almost to the point it's only about power and winning. Charlie Daniels had a song saying 'God save us all from religion.' And I'm thinking, God save us all from politicians."