Those of you who love the storytelling and heartbreak that go hand in hand with country music (hopefully that’s all of you!) would do a lot worse than to check out the music of Arkansas native/Nashville resident Erin Enderlin if you haven’t already done so.
An artist we have featured several times before (I’m a self-confessed EE junkie) we mentioned her latest EP release, “Chapter One: Tonight I Don’t Give A Damn”, last Friday but there’s far more to this project than meets the eye. It is the first in a series of EP’s Erin will be releasing this year, each one a collection of three songs and accompanying videos focusing on a different character and events in their life, a really unique and exciting concept for sure.
The videos for this first chapter play out like a movie, like the tracks they each roll perfectly into the next and to be fully appreciated need to be listened to/watched as a single entity, which is why I’ve added the video links together at the end of this article ( all were directed by Ryan Nolan) .
The focus for this EP is on the young girl we meet in the opening track, “Broken”, who married the first man to show her any affection to escape the misery of her childhood home. It turned out he was from a similar back ground (the songs opening lines summing him up perfectly, “He was a bastard, even though he knew his Daddy… brown as the whiskey that ran through both their veins…”. The relationship was doomed from the start…” when you’ve got that kind of history, it’s hard to break free, when broken’s all you know it’s all you know how to be”…and she makes the toughest of all decisions to have their child adopted in the hope he’ll get a better life than both of theirs. The video shows her driving away from the abuse her husband delivered.
Her story continues in “Till It’s Gone”, she’s bought a bottle of liquor and checked into a motel where she celebrates her freedom by drinking and smoking. While this is the lightest song both sonically and subject matter wise on the EP there’s still plenty of darkness and regret evident, and the demons of her past aren’t going to vanish that easily. The video flashes back momentarily to her cradling her baby…” I was a fool, didn’t know what I had ’till it was gone” she sings… is she just referring to the child, or to the company she got from her husband (albeit in a dysfunctional marriage)? I still don’t know to be honest! This second video ends our young girl applying pretty heavy makeup, and we see why in the EP’s closing (and title) track and video.
While the first two songs featured on Erin’s 2017 album Whiskeytown Crier”, “Tonight I Don’t Give A Damn” hasn’t been released before and Erin got a chance to showcase it last week when she stepped into the circle onstage at the legendary Opry for the fifth time. We find our girl continuing her drinking in a bar…. “sitting here talking to a stranger, ‘cos I don’t want to be alone tonight”. She knows she’ll be full of regrets the next morning, “what’s a one night stand going to get me, feeling more alone than I already am?” but the way she’s feeling she’ll let him take her home because “tonight I don’t give a damn”.
This EP is so emotionally charged and raises so many questions, Erin’s vocals throughout are achingly beautiful and there’s fabulous production by Jim “Moose” Brown and Jamey Johnson. It’s available now via all the usual streaming/download services.
If the remaining “chapters” are even a patch on this initial one, be prepared to stock up on tissues! Of course we’ll keep you posted as and when they are released.