Review: Mark Chesnutt, “Things To Do In Wichita”

mark-chessnuttMark Chesnutt croons his way through “Things To Do In Wichita” with his usual ease and decisive country swagger. The theme of love gone wrong is timeless in country songs and this one is executed with simplicity both in content and production by the man who has returned to the country roots to which he is best suited.

Chesnutt sings of the things he has to do in Wichita as he mentally fortifies himself to stumble through the long days alone in a hotel as a result of assumed relational transgressions. While we aren’t specifically privy to what he’s done wrong, we learn that the evenings are the toughest, because he has to be strong enough to avoid Happy Hour each day in the hotel bar, which would apparently “make her proud.” Furthermore, we’re told that he’s trying to learn how to be a better man by reading the Book in the drawer of the hotel nightstand.

Chesnutt delivers a solid and simple, no frills country song, which is a welcome reprieve from the pop-flavored, over-produced music that country radio tends to be embracing these days.

Written by Jimmy Ritchey & Bob Regan

Grade: B

Listen: Things to do in Wichita



  1. I really like the guitar riffs. He’s got that low bass Randy Travis thing goin’ on in certain places as well. Vintage Mark Chestnutt!

    I’m pullin’ for the guy. One of my favs. If’n I had a iPod I’d buy this one!

  2. JHD,
    It’s good to see you ’round here again. I’m pulling for him too. Tell those kids of yours to get you an Ipod. I swear, you’ll love it!

    The first verse is pretty slow/lifeless (probably represents how the character feels), but I find the second verse to be more interesting.

  3. Come on people. This is great music. I know it’s difficult to recognize. Let any top radio act perform this song. They can’t pull it off. Who’s gona do it. Chesney? Are you kidding? Toby? Keith Urban? I saw Mark do a version of Hank Jrs’ Blues Man many years ago in Beaumont. NOBODY does “Blues Man” Like Mark. George Strait could pull off “Wichita” But that’s it. Mark is one of the greatest country voices of all time. Granted, his song selections have been questionable, but the voice is undeniable. Buy the CD/Turn off the radio.

  4. @Bogie: A grade of “B” is very good; quite a few singles reviewed here receive far worse. I personally agree with Leeann’s review. This song isn’t my favorite Chesnutt cut, but he’s one of the stronger voices of his generation and deserves some success at this stage in his career.

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