Ben Burgess: ‘Tears the Size of Texas’ – Debut Album Review
Ben Burgess’ debut album, Tears the Size of Texas is out now, September 30th on all streaming platforms. Take a listen and read our full review below.
While you may not know the name Ben Burgess just yet, chances are incredibly high that you know a song he’s written. With a career honed on Austin’s famed 6th Street, the Dallas native co-wrote Morgan Wallen’s #1 hit, “Whiskey Glasses,” as well as Tyler Rich’s “The Difference,” Pat Green’s “Drinkin’ Days,” HARDY’s “SIGNED, SOBER YOU,” and many more.
After a stint in Los Angeles spent writing pop songs, where he had a song cut by The Jonas Brothers, the Dallas native headed to Nashville where he signed with Big Loud Records in 2020, releasing his first single, “Tears the Size of Texas,” earlier this year. Today, September 30, the rising star releases his debut album of the same name, featuring ten new tracks co-written by Burgess, alongside the likes of Josh Kerr, Brandy Clark, Ashley Gorley, Jacob Davis, and more.
Despite all his successes as a writer, his debut album almost didn’t happen. “I’d given up on the dream of being an artist,” Burgess admits. “I always wanted to do it and felt like I could, but the pieces never aligned.” However, once he realized that there were few who could sing his songs as well as he could, Burgess decided to continue his musical journey.
As an artist, Burgess is pursuing a sound that is uniquely his own, mixing hints of Texas country with nostalgic tales that he hopes will provide listeners with “three or four-minute movies.” This is especially evident on songs like “Kill a Man,” “Jackson,” and the album’s title track, “Tears the Size of Texas.”
“Jackson,” co-written by Burgess, Clark, Jessie Jo Dillon, and Jesse Frasure, is an immediate standout, offering a male version of the Dolly Parton classic “Jolene.” It may be the only song where Burgess is less than confident, begging “Jackson” not to take his girl.
“Oh Jackson // Keep your money // Keep your mansion // Keep your tall blonde and handsome // Away from Her // Oh Jackson // Take my daddy’s old guitar // My Best bird dog and my favorite bar and my whole world // Just don’t take my girl”
Meanwhile, he sets the stage as a cowboy full of bravado, warning a girl not to get too close on “Tears the Size of Texas.” “Baby, I’ve always been a cowboy // Just my guitar, my horses and gun,” He admits. “Like the movies I leave with the settin’ sun // And If I was you, baby, I’d run.”
On “High Road,” he shows a lighter side, suggesting partaking in Willie Nelson’s favorite pastime as opposed to drinking, while “Kill a Man” shows his clever lyrics at his finest. His ex has moved on and he wishes her well, but he muses, “I don’t want to know his name // ‘Cause I don’t wanna kill a man.”
And while “Started a Band” and “When We Die” offer booming and anthemic moments, heartache runs rampant on Tears, weaving its way through songs like “White Picket Fence,” “When We Die,” and “Heartbreak.” The latter is one of the album’s most radio-ready singles, a two-stepping ode to the fact that “heartbreak makes the world go ‘round.” Likewise, “White Picket Fence” is another lyrical gem, as Burgess warns that perfection can’t be built on a shaky foundation.
“No never build a white picket fence // Around a house of cards // ‘Cause, the first time that the wind blows babe // The whole thing’s gonna fall apart // So, let’s get out while we both still got a chance // Before our first kiss and our first dance // And a white picket fence.”
A different kind of heartbreak befalls the album’s final track, “Ain’t Got No Phone,” which finds Burgess and his family mourning the death of his father in their own ways. On the sparse and haunting track, he mourns the sad fact that “Heaven ain’t got no phone.”
For Ben Burgess, Tears the Size of Texas is an introduction to an artist who is unapologetically himself. “We can tell these stories and bring people into these worlds and give it more of a world and sound,” he says of the album, which he can’t wait to take on the road. “I want the live show to stay true to the recording because we got the best of the best in the studio,” He says. “I’m so excited to see where the music goes and what happens from here. Because right now, it’s as good as it gets.”
Ben Burgess – Tears the Size of Texas Track List:
- Tears the Size of Texas (writers: Ben Burgess, Josh Kerr)
- White Picket Fence (writers: Ben Burgess, Kevin Kadish)
- When We Die (writers: Ben Burgess, Josh Kerr)
- Jackson (writers: Ben Burgess, Brandy Clark, Jessie Jo Dillon, Jesse Frasure)
- High Road (writers: Ben Burgess, Ryan Beaver, Kevin Kadish, Randy Montana)
- Heartbreak (writers: Ben Burgess, Jacob Durrett, Ashley Gorley)
- Kill A Man (writers: Ben Burgess, Kevin Kadish)
- Sick and Tired (writers: Ben Burgess, Jacob Davis, Josh Kerr)
- Started A Band (writers: Ben Burgess, Chris LaCorte, Hunter Phelps)
- Ain’t Got No Phone (written by Ben Burgess)
Country Swag Picks:
- Started a Band
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Ben Burgess is currently touring with Warren Zeiders, and will make a stop at NYC’s Irving Plaza on October 27.
To keep up with the rising star, visit his official website or follow him on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or Twitter.
Ben Burgess’ new album, Tears the Size of Texas, is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.