I don’t typically go for these Christmas releases, even when they come from acts I really like. Aimee Mann delivered a nice one with 2006’s One More Drifter in the Snow but, apart from a lovely rendition of ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,’ it didn’t grab me beyond a couple of listens. Same goes for Bob Dylan’s 2009 Christmas in the Heart.
This tongue-in-cheek tune explores the life of a hunter’s wife, and throws in enough hunting jargon to weigh down an 11-point buck.
It got me thinking… what came first, country music’s music or its lyrics?
This beautiful ballad explores the end of a relationship that existed entirely in a spotlight. She compares their marriage to a framed painting, a rodeo and a country song — all objects of public scrutiny. She recognizes that, in the general conversation, her love affair was a fleeting diversion: “We’re just another thing they’ll all forget about / They’ll be standing around laughin’ like nothing ever happened.”
Not to shortchange Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley, who are both very talented, but this album is further proof that everything Miranda Lambert touches turns to gold.
2016’s double album The Weight of These Wings was her best work yet, and that’s saying something given that her previous two records showed up in my top five albums of the first half of the 2010s.