NYCS First Impression: Drake White ‘Stars’
With one of music’s biggest and most underrated voices, country’s soul man Drake White is back with a new EP, Stars, out today (April 24). The EP is the follow up to 2018’s Pieces EP, and marks White’s first release on his own label, Reverend White Records.
The soulful songwriter co-wrote three of the EP’s five tracks, and also enlisted the songwriting talents of Josh Kerr, Cary Barlowe, Ross Ellis, Ryan Beaver, Rodney Clawson, Adam Hambrick, and more. Produced by Cadillac Three singer-songwriter Jaren Johnston, Stars is a passionate, grooving, and honest collection of some of White’s best work to date.
The EP opens with “Luckiest Man,” and one can’t help but wonder if the track was inspired by White’s health issues over the past year. In early 2019, White revealed to PEOPLE that he was suffering from Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM), which is an abnormal configuration of the arteries and veins in the brain, causing issues with blood flow. In July, the energetic singer suffered an on-stage scare and underwent a serious of embolizations to remedy his condition. Yet, none of that gets him down on this EP.
White’s positivity and spirit are evident throughout the EP, but maybe no more so than on “Eat, Drink & Dream,” which White called “a declaration of relentless optimism.” Speaking to Billboard, he says of the song, “In the face of adversity, when no one is looking, that is when an individual’s true character is revealed. That’s what this song is — a power dose of optimism that you can!”
The entire collection stays true to White’s brand, combining soul, funk, groove, and country with his clever lyrics and sense of humor. “My Favorite Band” is a groovy uptempo where White sings about his musical influences, before putting a fun spin on the track. While he calls out a ton of his favorite artists here, he pivots the fun track into a love song. “Baby look down at your left hand,” He sings. “That’s my favorite band.”
The EP ends with “All Would Be Right With the World,” a song that we could all use in the crazy times, as White celebrates all the things that would make the world right. “What if beer and friend chicken/ Didn’t make us fat and sicken?” He muses here, “What if cigarettes and whiskey/ they didn’t try to kill me?” In true White form, he spins the track again, making it about love, as he proclaims, “If every morning I woke up right beside you girl/ All would be right with the world.”
1. Luckiest Man (Ben Burgess, Josh Kerr, Alysa Vanderheym, Cary Barlowe)
2. Mix ‘Em With Whiskey (Ryan Beaver, Rodney Clawson, Adam Hambrick, Andrew DeRoberts)
3. Eat, Drink & Dream (Drake White, Tommy Cecil, Greylan James)
4. My Favorite Band (Drake White, Ross Ellis, Dan Fernandez, Michael Whitworth)
5. All Would Be Right With The World (Drake White, Tommy Cecil, Matt Alderman)
To keep up with Drake White, follow him on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Visit his official website for upcoming tour dates, merch, and more.
“Stars” 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.
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