This single review is written by Guest Contributor Jennifer Bernard.
“Draw Me a Map,” the second single from Up on the Ridge, contains lyrics which are cleverly evocative and packed with passion. The acoustic arrangement combined with the vocals of Dierks Bentley and Alison Krauss make for a soothing delivery of words that definitely dive below the surface. Specifically with lines such as “I’d beg forgiveness but I don’t know where to start” and “I’ve never been so at loss, I’m at a canyon I can’t get around or cross,” you can truly feel the anxiety and hopelessness that Bentley illustrates.
What strikes me while listening to this song is the vulnerability of the man in this situation. It is obvious that he regrets letting her go and now understands that she and him are meant to be (“You’re my destiny and destination”). It’s always refreshing to put pride aside and express how one feels on a deeper level which the ballad so strongly conveys. Krauss doesn’t have a major presence in this song which is both dulcet as it is symbolic. We understand that this song is about the man’s apology and the woman’s forgiveness. Furthermore, with Krauss in the background we are comforted knowing that she is there listening and possibly yearning for their relationship, too.
I’m a huge fan of metaphors, so there’s no mistaking that I appreciate this song’s metaphorical lyrics. No, he’s not asking her to physically draw him a map to help him find her. Rather, he’s desperate for her to tell him how he can come back in her life. It’s a song about a tender subject, so the simple vocals and music execute a harmonious match. Although the tune may not have an outstanding presence or be as memorable as its country ballad predecessors, all in all, this collaboration provides a unique touch to the album and is a nice addition to Bentley’s musical résumé.
Written by Dierks Bentley & Jon Randall Stewart
Listen: Draw Me a Map
I think this may be Dierks’ best single yet.
This is a lovely song, melodic and pensive. It rivals the best of country songs in being able to express a story in concise, musical terms. The words are an excellent reflection of Bentley’s best song writing abilities. The combination of the words and melody are far more than just the sum of thier parts. My favorite by far on a CD which rivals the best.
…this song is a fine piece of music. although, lyrically and thematically rather simple, its melodic flow, dierks bentley’s vocals and the restrained instrumentation create a kind of soothing atmosphere when listening. most agreeable, indeed.