Written by Marv Green, Hillary Lindsey, and Troy Verges
Tim McGraw’s been getting his groove back lately. Much of his new album, Sundown Heaven Town, recalls the sound of his biggest turn-of-the-century hits without sounding dated.
“Shotgun Rider” is a great example of this, having that wistful, floating on air quality that made “Just to See You Smile” and “For a Little While” so infectious. Sure, he’s singing about riding around town in his truck with a pretty girl. Hardly groundbreaking lyrical territory these days.
But this song’s about fidelity and commitment, sprinkled with those little lyrical details that always made McGraw’s best hits so special. Remember the “BBQ stain on my white t-shirt” and “the two of hearts to mark her page”? Here, it’s not wanting to wake up and watch “an new girl putting on her make up before dinner on Friday night.” He’s found his shotgun rider, and doesn’t want anybody else beside him, “singing to the radio.”
Speaking of singing, he’s doing it without the over assist of autotune, which has dragged down too many of his more recent hits. He sounds like Tim McGraw again.
It’s a throwback that feels contemporary, like an old friend coming back to town and reminding you why you became friends in the first place.