Sunny Sweeney with Will Hoge
Written By Ashley Monroe, Angaleena Presley, and Sunny Sweeney
Both Sunny Sweeney and Will Hoge have flirted briefly with mainstream success: Sweeney cracked the top 10 at radio with “From a Table Away,” while Eli Young Band scored a major hit with their cover of Hoge’s “Even If It Breaks Your Heart.” A slow-burning ballad that chronicles the dissolution of a relationship between actual adults, “My Bed” is, unfortunately, too far out-of-step with the culture at country radio for the pair of singer-songwriters to make any new inroads there. But it’s a measured, mature single that deserves a wider audience.
Sweeney’s vocal style is characterized by a palpable sense of disaffect. Though that has resulted in something of an emotional disconnection on some of her uptempo singles— “Drink Myself Single” and “Bad Girl Phase”— a melancholy track like “My Bed” is well-suited to her unique delivery. When she drawls the line, “I’ll always love you/At least that’s what we said/Now you’re just sleeping in my bed,” she sounds genuinely put-out by her present situation, and it makes for a performance that’s lived-in and authentic.
Hoge, for his part, brings a bit more warmth to his performance, downplaying the natural grit in his voice and conveying wounds that seem more fresh. The interplay between the two singers results in a duet that avoids accusations and resentment: If there’s a villain here, both Sweeney and Hoge do their best to cast it as the titular bed itself.
While that makes for an interesting perspective, what limits the song is its lack of detail. Co-written by Sweeney and two-thirds of the Pistol Annies, “My Bed” lacks the specificity that each of these three women typically brings to her songs. In the opening verse, Sweeney sings, “You don’t know me/Baby, where did we go wrong?” But the remainder of the song doesn’t provide much else in the way of depth to either her or Hoge’s characters beyond their nighttime routines. That leaves the singers to fill in narrative and character gaps with their performances. They certainly prove themselves capable of doing so, but a few details about how this couple drifted apart would have elevated the single even further.