Drive-By Truckers have shared a new lyric video for “Tough To Let Go,” a highlight from their second album of 2020, The New Ok.
The New OK marks the Drive-By Truckers’ 13th studio album and arrives mere months after the release of their highly lauded The Unraveling. Originally conceived as a quarantine EP collecting material recorded in Memphis during sessions for The Unraveling, the project expanded to include new powerful songs written and recorded over what Drive-By Truckers co-founder Patterson Hood describes as “this endless summer of protests, riots, political shenanigans and pandemic horrors.”
Tracks such as Hood’s “The New OK” and “Watching The Orange Clouds” – inspired by the protests following George Floyd’s murder – were exchanged between Hood, co-founding singer/songwriter/guitarist Mike Cooley, bassist Matt Patton, keyboardist Jay Gonzalez, drummer Brad Morgan, and then mixed by longtime DBT producer David Barbe. Bassist Patton offers vocals on The Ramones standard “The KKK Took My Baby Away.” Hood says it’s “a full album that hopefully balances out the darkness of our current situation with a hope for better days and nights ahead.”
“To call these past few months trying would be a dramatic understatement,” Hood continues. “Our lives are intertwined with our work in ways that give us our best songs and performances. It is a life that has often rewarded us beyond our wildest dreams. Speaking for myself, I don’t have hobbies, I have this thing I do. To be sidelined with a brand new album and have to sit idly while so much that I love and hold dear falls apart before my very eyes has been intense, heartbreaking, anger provoking and very depressing. It has gone to the very heart of our livelihoods and threatened near everything that we have spent our lives trying to build. Here’s to the hope that we can make 2021 a better year than this one has been. In the meantime, here’s to THE NEW OK!”
Drive-By Truckers co-founder Patterson Hood shares his thoughts on the track and video:
“Tough To Let Go” literally came to me in a dream. Ironically, in my dream it was a Jason Isbell song. My wife and I were seeing him soundcheck in a great big arena and he and his band were working up this brand new song. I told my wife that his new song was great and sounded like a huge hit. Then I woke up and realized that it wasn’t anyone’s actual song, so I immediately wrote it.
I even sent Jason a copy of the recording with some other songs to get his feedback and he said it was his favorite of the bunch. He assured me that it was indeed my song though. We recorded it in Memphis at Sam Phillips Recording Service. To me the horns take it to the next level. I’m really proud of the video also.
*Feature image credit: Jason Thrasher