Written by Kane Brown, Jesse Frasure, Levon Gray, and Ernest Keith Smith
I’m trying to remember the last time I’ve been so excited by a country radio artist. It has to have been at least a decade, unless we count some of the ones that have been pitched to radio but not really played.
Kane Brown keeps getting more and more interesting with his choices in the studio. Applying the lesson taught by Shania Twain but too often forgotten over the years, Brown understands that you can take the structure of a pop record and embellish it with country instrumentation to create a delightful concoction that isn’t ashamed of its pop or its country identity.
“One Mississippi” is driven by a relentless fiddle that pulsates throughout the record. It’s the best damn fiddle that I’ve heard on a country record in recent memory, and it gives “One Mississippi” its own racing heartbeat that represents the nervousness, excitement, and uncertainty Brown is feeling as he bounces between waiting to reconnect with his on again, off again lover and then making the 3 AM, whiskey-assisted reconnection.
The bombast of the record is used appropriately, with the bridge and chorus capturing the actual hook up bringing in the arena anthem sounds, while the verses strip everything down to bare instrumentation, as he spends his time pining for the girl that he clearly loves, but only wants him for a tumble in the dark from time to time.
The characters are sharply drawn, the emotions are nuanced and grounded in reality, and the hook is relentlessly catchy.
“One Mississippi” is just deliriously good. Kane Brown has once again demonstrated just how creative and entertaining a mainstream country record can be in 2021. I can’t wait to hear what he does next.