You might not know him by name just yet, but if you’ve listened to the recent CMA nominated album from Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, Django & Jimmie, you’ve appreciated the incredible songwriting skills of Ward Davis, on the track, “Unfair Weather Friend.” Davis’ rendition of this simple, touching tune about friends that can always be counted on, is on his new album, 15 Years in a 10 Year Town, (to be released on September 18).
Nelson and Jamey Johnson join Davis on his personal favorite track and the album’s first single “Old Worn Out Cowboy” (due out September 14). Nelson’s voice is instantly recognizable on this new song with a traditional country sound. Drifting back to the Wild West, outlaws step out of the perfectly gritty, “No Goin’ Home.” Davis’ smooth, hearty voice continues on “I Got You,” which combines devoted lyrics and a lilting beat. One of my favorites off the album, it is a testament to a love so great, the reality of it is better than any altered state from drugs or booze.
The most personal song on the album, “Skeptic’s Prayer,” was written during a difficult, uncertain time, when he desperately wanted a sign to keep his faith strong. Raw and real, a lyrical embodiment of the point at which I imagine even the most devout go through when trying to make sense of pain and struggle. The title track provides glimpses into what some of the troubles might’ve been, “…chasing a dream I never found…” Yet, it was written after Willie & the Hag recorded his song (“Unfair Weather Friend”). The words, “Starting to think, I’m getting what I deserve…” may be ringing true.
Ward Davis is arguably one of the best voices I’ve heard come out of Nashville in quite some time. I hope this album is just the beginning. Ward generous enough to give CMchat’ters an exclusive first listen this weekend!
Ward Davis on itunes
PRE ORDER “15 Years in A 10 Year Town” here WardDavisMusic.com
15 Years in a 10 Year Town (Produced by Jim “Moose” Brown):
No Goin’ Home – Ward Davis
More Goodbye – Davis/Greg Jones/Clint Park
15 Years in a 10 Year Town – Davis/Pat Alger
Nobody’s Looking – Davis/Monica Spendlove
Old Worn Out Cowboy w/Jamey Johnson, Willie Nelson, & Trigger – Ed Bruce
The Overpass – Davis/Greg Jones/Ron Dini
Unfair Weather Friend – Davis/Marla Cannon-Goodman
I Got You – Davis/Bob Regan
Skeptic’s Prayer – Davis