Sugarland, “Already Gone”

Sugarland, riding the wave of their #1 album Love on the Inside, jumps right back on country radio’s wagon—with a waltz, no less. “Already Gone” seems to be an attempt to cleanse our palates from the sweeter-than-sugar ditty “All I Want to Do,” their chart-topping bubblegum pop smash.

It’s easily much more distinctive, in terms both musically and conceptually.  Nettles takes on the identity of a young woman learning life’s lessons through her own personal experience. Her refusal to heed her mother’s guidance, the subsequent advice of her friends and the painful breakup of her relationship are all objects in her rear view mirror because, as Nettles says, she’s “already gone.” By the end, she understands that listening to good judgment would have made her half as wise as taking the chance on that “runaway train you can’t wait to jump on.”

Of course, as usual, Jennifer Nettles is capable of making any song shine, and she fully wraps herself into the character. Kristian Bush’s vocal near the conclusion is slightly distracting, and would work much better harmonically than out in front on this song, especially given the narrative standpoint of a woman on the verge.

Overall, “Already Gone” just slightly misses its mark. The chorus, although meant to weave among the three verses, never quite connects the different storylines. And the lyrics seem just unique enough while only scratching the surface of the true emotional undercurrent of the song. The difficulty in three-act songs is telling an entire story with the right amount of evidence to support the chorus. This one, with an attractive vocal and a fairly interesting story, just squeaks by.

Written by  Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles and Bobby Pinson

Grade: B

Listen: Already Gone

Buy: Already Gone


  1. i like the tune, and the last verse about their “whole life down to one box” but overall I didn’t think this was one of the strongest on the cd.

  2. I quite like this song – Very catchy tune – But it’s not the strongest from the album. I would perfer to see “We Run” or “What I’d Give” released.

  3. I really like this song, and I think it will be well for them.

    It’s a lot better than All I Want To Do and unfortunley that was a number one song.

  4. I figured this would be a single at some point, as it’s got one of the more radio-friendly productions on the album. It certainly has a pleasant sound, but overall I just find it kind of boring. Seems to me like this thematic territory should have been put to rest with the Chicks’ “Wide Open Spaces.”

  5. It has this pass-the-pitcher-around-the-Irish-pub quality to it that I adore. I love the attention to detail in the lyrics, too.

    I see the thematic connections to “Wide Open Spaces”, though I have to admit, when that Dixie Chicks single came out I thought,”Didn’t Suzy Bogguss already do this with ‘Letting Go’?”

  6. Good point, Kevin. Come to think of it, it has been a full decade (woah) since “Wide Open Spaces,” so maybe a new iteration of the theme is due for this generation (though I personally don’t think this one is quite as well-written).

  7. I’m a huge Sugarland fan and a big fan of this album but I agree with everyone else that said this isn’t really the strongest song on the album. I would’ve rather seen “We Run” or even “Love” as the next single.

    I’m not sure “Already Gone” will do as well at radio.

  8. Aaron,

    ANYTHING Sugarland releases to country radio will do well. they’re in the “Guaranteed” hit level right now. Love won’t be released as a single, not with “It Happens” “We Run,” “Keep You” and “Very Last Country Song” in contention. Now, releasing “Love” to AC Stations, now THAT would be a possibility…

  9. When the CD first came out “All I Want To Do” and “Already Gone” were on the packaging as singles. Now, as I saw the other day, the normal version has “Keep You” added to the list, so it is most likely the third single from the album. A good choice, IMO.

    About this song, I love it so much. The third verse is my favorite part, and I just love it overall.

    Personally, I predict that the 4th single will be “Take Me As I Am”, just as an extra tidbit.

  10. Matt B

    Alright so I guess my wording was wrong then. I’m not sure if “Already Gone” will hit number 1, I’m sure it’ll be their next top 10, but not sure about number 1. That’s what I meant but I guess I needed to be more specific. Haha but can’t wait to hear it on the local stations here!

  11. No one is mentioning the release of Fall Into Me or Wishing as singles. Will their status as the extra songs to the deluxe edition doom them to not being released as singles? If so that is a big loss for listeners. I think these are two great songs. It Happens, Take me as I am, and Very last country Song are all good too, but these two are special.

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