Single Review: Brett Eldredge, “Mean to Me”

Brett Eldredge Mean to Me

“Mean to Me”
Brett Eldredge

Written by Scooter Carusoe and Brett Eldredge

Winning a major award seems as good a time as any to pay closer attention to an artist.   Brett Eldredge collected his New Artist award at last week’s CMA Awards while his current hit, “Mean to Me”, was already ascending the charts.

Let’s get real here.   We know going in that nothing can happen in 3 minutes and 50 seconds to make us say, “Hey, he totally deserved to win over Brandy Clark.”   But “Mean to Me” does indicate that he’s a lot closer to Dierks Bentley or Kip Moore than he is to any of the interchangeable C-list acts that are singing about drinking and girls with their bare feet on the dashboard.

He’s got a voice that is deep enough to keep his limited range interesting, and while the song itself amounts to little more than a happier days prequel to Blake Shelton’s “It Would Be You”, it is a pleasant slice of filler anyway.  Only time will tell if he’ll be around long enough that we won’t have to Google-check the spelling of his last name every time we have to write about him.

Tick tock.

Grade: B


  1. My personal grade for this song: C+. Pleasant-enough filler that comes across as unintentionally self-absorbed in the lyrics. He seems to assume that this random girl would naturally be as infatuated with him as he is with her, but I think that’s just lazy songwriting, not his intent.

    My personal grade for the last line of this review: A+. nuff said.

  2. Your second paragraph begins: “Let’s get real here. We know going in that nothing can happen in 3 minutes and 50 seconds to make us say, “Hey, he totally deserved to win over Brandy Clark.” I couldn’t agree more.
    Your B grade seems fair.

    For co-writer Carusoe, I prefer his “Sound of a Million Dreams” which he co-wrote with Phil Vassar.

  3. I mean, had Clark not been in the running, I guess Eldredge would have been my choice by default– Rhett and Swindell have done nothing but contribute to the piss-poor state of the genre, and I’ve yet to hear what most of the crew here at CU hear in Moore. I would have loved to see a nomination for Charlie Worsham.

    But I stand by what I said elsewhere: Somewhere, James Otto is looking at Eldredge’s success and wondering where it all went awry.

  4. @JK – saw Otto about 2 1/2 years ago and was really impressed with his vocals and I liked his first 2 albums. The last album, not so much. I think he’s supposed to release a new album soon.

  5. I actually feel the same way about Kip Moore as you do, Jonathan. Ditto about Charlie Worsham! Good comparison to James Otto too. This song is mostly bland to me, but it’s at least okay. I would’ve preferred if the storyline somehow fit the surface assumption of what the title suggests. It might’ve been a more interesting song.

  6. I really don’t think Rhett’s that bad at all. “Get Me Some of That” was one of the most listenable new songs on the radio this summer.

    He sold the hell out of a silly lyric, and just had a good time with the song. It was nothing special, but it was cute rather than icky, the production didn’t got in the way of the song and, most importantly, it was genuinely fun to listen to. It made me want to turn the volume knob, rather than the dial.

    He’s nothing earth-shattering, but I do think there’s a lot to like.

  7. …since most cma awards reward performance over substance, it was only logical that brett eldredge was named “artist of the year” at the recent cma awards: he has sung more hits than any of the other newcomers.

    this is a rather pleasant little ditty well executed. it fits to his vocal style perfectly and is a snuggly break on today’s country radio playlists. eldredge enjoys remarkable success on the airplay-charts, which only confirms my aforementioned impression. he is easy on the ears and that is no small fry, when radio is involved.

  8. B sounds about right. I’m a sucker for list songs (Lorrie Morgan’s “I Just Might Be”) and as those go, this one is pretty good. The chorus, however , I’m not so sure about, hence no A.
    I quite like Eldredge and while “It Ain’t Gotta Be Love” and “Beat of the Music” are more than decent (Tom’s “pleasant little ditty well executed” sounds about right), this one takes it up a notch. Let’s see what else he’s got.

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