Friday, June 4, 2010

Justin Moore, "How I Got to Be This Way"

When I heard the opening line of Justin Moore's current single - "I rolled my Daddy's truck off the Dicksonville curve/ After drinkin' my fifth beer" - my first thought was, "Oh dear, where is this song going?" But the lyrics took a turn in the right direction. The song's narrator describes the many mistakes he made in his young manhood, from letting himself be deceived by a dishonest man to breaking a young girl's heart to running up too fast behind a horse and getting kicked. The chorus is flat-out and honest: "Yeah, I've done some pretty stupid things, but hey/ I'm a little bit harder/ And a whole lot smarter/ That's how I got to be this way."

I can't give Justin extra points for poetic language, but this song is likely better off without it. Such blunt simplicity is not always easy to pull of, but it works in this instance. "How I Got to Be This Way" is a straightforward piece about how the mistakes we've all made and the hardships we've endured have shaped our character and turned us into the people we are today. Justin sums up the song's message by saying "That's what it takes to make a man out of a kid." All of us have done a few stupid things in our life (I remember almost getting kicked by a horse once!), so anyone can relate to this song.

The biggest problem with this song is that it suffers from unnecessarily loud production, as well as a rather uninteresting melody.  While this song is based on a worthy concept, the execution is definitely not perfect.

Up to this point, Justin's songs have ranged from average to just plain awful, and while this single is not spectacular, it is a marked improvement over "Backwoods," and at least a small step in the right direction.

(Scores are given on a scale of 1 to 10)