Release date: 08-23-19
Label: MCA Nashville
With the album’s title and varied themes, Gill helps Merle Haggard and other inspirations reclaim “Okie,” a term used in the past to disparage Oklahoma natives living on the West Coast during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression years. For Gill, a proud Oklahoman, it now applies to common folks with specific fears and triumphs that are broadly relatable to listeners well beyond the Sooner State.
“I thought this was going to be a songwriter record, not a concept album,” Gill says in a press release. “It wound up being more information than I’d envisioned. A friend sent me an email saying, ‘You could have only written this record after living a 60-year-plus life.’ He said, ‘There’s no struggle in these songs, just truth and your experience.'"
A Letter to My Mama, the album’s lead release, applies Gill’s acoustic-driven, sentimental style to a nod to country music’s time-tested themes of faith, family and home. Readers can press play above to hear the song.