Sunday, April 24, 2011

Trace Adkins, "Just Fishin'"

In a surprising display of good taste, country radio didn't jump on board with Trace Adkin's recent vomit-inducing ditty "Brown Chicken Brown Cow."  Trace's new single "Just Fishin'" finds him retreating back into safer lyrical territory, but it also finds him doing what does best - tugging heartstrings.  At any rate, Trace has once again delivered a quality single that is just enjoyable enough for us to forgive the massive turd that preceded it.

While listening to this new single, it's hard not to be reminded of Trace's 2008 hit "You're Gonna Miss This."  Like that past chart-topper, "Just Fishin'" emphasizes the fleeting nature of the special moments in life.  Whereas the former utilized the common three-act story arc to make its point, "Just Fishin'" specifically focuses on parenthood, and isolates one significant moment in a father's life - that of taking his daughter fishing.

The daughter is unaware of the special significance her father attaches to their simple outing.  To her, it's just a normal experience, during which she chats with her father about everything from ballet shoes to kittens, thinking that they're "just fishin'."  Her father, on the other hand, savors every moment of the time spent with his daughter, wistfully aware that she will one day grow up and leave the nest.  He's fully aware that these moments won't last forever, so he's fully enjoying them while they're still here.

As a major plus, "Just Fishin'" reminds us once again of what a talented singer Trace is.  He has a recurring tendency to squander his million-dollar baritone on stale cheap fare, but when he gets a hold of a really good song, it's a real treat to listen to.  His delivery of "Just Fishin'" is warm, down-to-earth, and brimming with sincerity.  One would expect that Trace, being a father of five daughters, would have a deep personal connection to this lyrical scenario.  That connection comes through in his vocal.

Though it does bear a similarity to "You're Gonna Miss This," "Just Fishin'" still manages to offer a different variation on a familiar formula, and a well-executed attempt ends up a strong success.  If Trace is going to make it back into the Country Top 10, "Just Fishin'" deserves to be the song that gets him there.

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