Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tim McGraw and Gwyneth Paltrow, "Me & Tennessee"

This is an odd record.  Not that this is important, but where on earth do they get that title?  The phrase "Me & Tennessee" is not found in the lyrics, nor does it have a tangible connection to the song's overall concept.

"Me & Tennessee," Tim McGraw and Gwyneth Paltrow's new duet single from the Country Strong soundtrack, begins on a shallow note.  Nondistinct references to "all the good times we had... dancing on a Friday night" and so on aren't particularly interesting, and the chorus isn't exactly a step up.

When that old song comes on
Together we're singing, forever we're singing
That old country song
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

The melody is gloomy, and it almost sounds like it's also trying to be catchy, but it isn't catchy.  It's a bit repetitive.  Then the second verse rolls around, and the lead vocal baton passes from Tim to Gwyneth.  The lyrics take a bit of a U-turn.  Now it's a cheating song, as Gwyneth sings about things her man has done that she "can't forgive."

What next?  One more lackadaisical chorus, and then the song ends.  Thud.  Just like that.  That basically leaves us with two songs rolled into one with nothing tying them together.  A well-crafted third verse could have added some better cohesion.  But with the way things are it's hard to tell what kind of story the song is trying to tell, or how's it's supposed to affect us as listeners.  Is it simply waxing nostalgic?  Is it trying to be sad?  Are we supposed to cry or something?

It's hard to tell what the point of this song is.  Maybe the only point of its existence is to pair Tim McGraw with Gwyneth Paltrow.  Granted, they're both capable vocalists (even if Gwyneth does upstage Tim somewhat), but next time can we give them a better song?

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