If a song has nothing to say beyond what’s said in its title phrase, what’s the point of writing the song in the first place?
Jake Owen’s new single “Anywhere with You” takes a concept many times used before, and does nothing with it. We’ve all heard the country song about the starry-eyed narrator willing to live or travel absolutely anywhere
so long as he/she is joined by his/her significant other. Jo Dee Messina perhaps pulled it off best and most memorably with “Heads Carolina, Tails California.”
Owen offers a take that never aspires to be anything more than perfunctory. With a dull-as-a-brick title hook of “I’ll go anywhere with you,” the song lets listeners know what it’s about, and asks them to accept it without scrutiny. The chorus’ listing of random U.S. states in particular feels like an obvious crutch. The thick, un-country, radio-chasing production similarly earns no points for originality.
In light of Owen’s recent successes at radio, “Anywhere with You” will likely be a sizable hit. But it still fails to offer any answer to the fundamental question of “Why does this need to exist?”
Written by Ben Hayslip, David Lee Murphy, and Jimmy Yeary
Listen: Anywhere with You