With a vintage, moody groove—somewhere between Fleetwood Mac and Dire Straits—decorated recording artist Sunny Sweeney kicks off “Easy As Hello,” the latest single from her upcoming album Married Alone. “This is the type of song that makes me think I can see myself riding down the coast of California with a joint in my hand, music blaring and wind blowing my hair all over the place,” says Sweeney, and, odds are, it’s the kind of song that will make every listener feel as such. But “Easy As Hello” hides a troubled soul below its vibey exterior. Penned by Sweeney, Lori McKenna, and Heather Morgan, the song picks apart that final decision to end a relationship. “If goodbye were as easy as hello / Could forget about someone you held so close / Pack it up and just move on down the road.”
“This song was written much slower than we recorded it… I owe all the tempo and flare to Beau Bedford on this one,” says Sweeney. Bedford, along with Paul Cauthen, produced Married Alone—out September 23rd via Thirty Tigers. “He just came in the first day of recording holding up a guitar with no strap and goes, ‘This is it,’” she remembers. “He played a couple lines of it and I was sold.”
Fans can listen to “Easy As Hello” now at this link, check out the previously-released single, “A Song Can’t Fix Everything,” and pre-order or pre-save Married Alone ahead of its September 23rd release here:
Sweeney will visit the UK for shows in August including The Long Road and Millport Festivals and a stop at London’s Islington Academy. Dates are as follows:
19/8 – Millport Country Music Festival – Millport, UK
26/8 – The Long Road Festival – Bottesford, UK
30/8 – O2 Academy Islington – London, UK
More information/tickets: sunnysweeney.com/tour
In addition to the release of Married Alone, Sweeney just kicked off her own morning radio show on SiriusXM’s Willie’s Roadhouse, has a song featured in the upcoming film VENGEANCE, the directorial debut from writer and star B.J. Novak (The Office), and is on tour in the US. A full list of tour dates can be found at sunnysweeney.com/tour.
More About Married Alone: Opener “Tie Me Up” declares that, despite its loose theme, Married Alone is not a somber record, with Sweeney in full spitfire mode and cheekily declaring to a would-be suitor, “You can tie me up, but baby you can’t tie me down.” Cauthen’s and Bedford’s production especially shines on the track, which would sound at home at a roadside juke joint or in front of thousands of fans at a festival.
Cauthen joins Sweeney on the aforementioned “A Song Can’t Fix Everything,” one of the album’s rawer moments. “Want You to Miss Me” is an honest take on the complexities of a difficult breakup, with Sweeney’s nimble vocal wavering between defiance and doubt. “Easy as Hello” is Sweeney’s writing at its finest, channeling the heartache that comes with the end of a treasured relationship, for a track that recalls—vocally and lyrically—the work of Stevie Nicks.
“Someday You’ll Call My Name” reads like a break-up kiss-off—and it’s a great one, at that—but the song, pulled from Sweeney’s vault, was originally inspired by her early days as a musician, longing to be recognized by major country institutions like the Grand Ole Opry. She and co-writer Brennen Leigh reworked their 10-year-old version of the track to better fit Married Alone, and that session helped set the tone for what would become the full album.
The full potential of the album really revealed itself, though, when a friend sent Sweeney a demo of what would become its title track, “Married Alone.” Though she wasn’t a co-writer on the track, Sweeney felt her own story reflected in its lyrics. The song, which features a particularly emotional guest vocal from living country legend Vince Gill, charts the painful moments sometimes experienced in marriages that have run their course. “There may be rings on our fingers, but we’re married alone,” she and Gill sing, over weeping pedal steel and reverbed guitar.
“My jaw hit the floor when I heard that song, because I had just gone through my second divorce, which is also cliche of a country singer,” Sweeney says, with a laugh. “I was still pretty raw about my divorce, but also very candid and trying to find levity in the situation. You have to be able to laugh at yourself at some point and not let it just totally get you down.” A few months after securing the song and mining her own vault for a tracklist, Sweeney traveled to Dallas, TX, to record—alongside Cauthen and Bedford—what would become Married Alone.
Married Alone track listing:
Tie Me Up (Sunny Sweeney/Buddy Owens/Galen Griffin)
Easy As Hello (Sunny Sweeney/Lori McKenna/Heather Morgan)
Married Alone ft. Vince Gill (Hannah Blaylock/Josh Morningstar/Autumn McEntire)
Someday You’ll Call My Name (Sunny Sweeney/Brennen Leigh)
How’d I End Up Lonely Again (Sunny Sweeney/Channing Wilson/Josh Morningstar)
A Song Can’t Fix Everything ft. Paul Cauthen (Sunny Sweeney/Lori McKenna)
Want You To Miss Me (Sunny Sweeney/Caitlyn Smith)
Wasting One On You (Sunny Sweeney/Buddy Owens/Monty Holmes)
Fool Like Me (Waylon Payne/Kendell Marvel)
All I Don’t Need (Sunny Sweeney/Lori McKenna)
Leaving Is My Middle Name (Sunny Sweeney/ Buddy Owens/Galen Griffin/Scotch Taylor)
Still Here (Sunny Sweeney/Lori McKenna)
More About Sunny Sweeney: Sunny Sweeney is a country and Americana artist from Texas, currently based in Nashville, TN. Her latest album is Married Alone, a raw, vulnerable exploration of loss, grief, and healing recorded in Dallas, TX, and co-produced by fellow country artist Paul Cauthen and The Texas Gentlemen’s Beau Bedford. Sweeney debuted in 2006 with the acclaimed Heartbreaker’s Hall of Fame, which announced her as an important new voice in country and Americana songwriting. 2011’s Concrete produced the top 40 country singles “From a Table Away,” “Staying’s Worse Than Leaving” and “Drink Myself Single,” and led to a Top Female Artist nomination at the 2013 ACM Awards. Sweeney continued to expand upon the traditional-leaning, forward-thinking sound of her earlier work with 2014’s Provoked and 2017’s Trophy, both of which earned Sweeney rave reviews across the country and roots communities.
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