Jimmie Allen’s unique sound combined with Paisley’s signature guitar playing make for a remarkable new single, “Freedom Was A Highway”, set to hit country radio on February 1st.
“Freedom Was A Highway” was first released on Allen’s record Bettie James, named after his late grandmother and late father, where he collaborates with superstars of various genres and generations including Darius Rucker, Charlie Pride, Tim McGraw, Mickey Guyton, Nelly, Noah Cyrus, Tauren Wells, Rita Wilson, and The Oakridge Boys. Since its release in July 2020, Bettie James has received more than 118 million streams.
“Freedom Was A Highway” is a nostalgic, windows-down tune where Allen and Paisley reminisce about younger, carefree days. It was written by Allen, Ash Bowers, and Matt Rogers and Paisley adds vocals and a signature guitar solo.
When the town was the whole world / And love was the girl next door / soundtrack was a song in the dark / I miss those days when our dreams were there for chasing / But time was better wasted / We were summer young and livin’ for a Friday/ And freedom was a highway
While writing this song with his co-writers, Allen says he imagined himself driving down his favorite roads back in Delaware. He says, in a press release, “This song takes me back to simpler moments such as an innocent, childhood crush on the next-door neighbor or feeling freedom in the wind as you drive with the windows down.”
On dueting with Paisley, he shares, “I’m a huge admirer of Brad Paisley. I love what he brings to music and I had to have him bring that same magic to this song. I’m humbled to have him join me on this song – he brought the Freedom to the Highway.”
Regarding joining Allen on the song, Paisley shared, “I’m a fan of Jimmie, not only as a musician but also as a person, and I was honored when he asked me to join him on the song. It’s a magical combination – it doesn’t sound like a typical record for me at all and when I come in, I try my best not to ruin Jimmie’s song.” In regards to his role in the song, Paisley says that “I use my guitar to make a record sort of sound like I’m on it even before you hear me sing, and I love this guitar solo. I’m really proud to be a part of ‘Freedom Was A Highway’ and I’m excited for people to hear it.’”
When you’re seventeen and driving / you don’t think about the road running out / no, no, no, no / you just keep your eyes on that horizon / because you’re wrapped in now
Allen has already made history as the first Black artist to launch a career with two consecutive No. 1 hits on Country radio – the first being his debut single “Best Shot” – which claimed the No. 1 spot for three weeks – and second being his latest solo single “Make Me Want To”. While Bettie James was a special album for Allen because it paid tribute to his late family members and so many influential artists, “Why Things Happen” with Darius Rucker and Charley Pride was an especially impactful moment of his career as Allen was able to bring together three generations of Black country artists and share a song with the two artists who helped pave the way for him in country music. Allen is beyond grateful that he was able to have a friendship and this song with Pride before he passed and that he was able to properly thank him for breaking the barriers that allowed for his presence and success in country music.
On July 13, 2021, Allen will publish his debut picture book, My Voice Is a Trumpet, a powerful story about speaking up for what you believe in, at any age. For more information, visit www.jimmieallenmusic.com.
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“Freedom Was A Highway” is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music here on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.