After six years since the Country Hall of Fame inductee Alan Jackson, 62, released his last album “Angels and Alcohol”, he’s back again in the music scene with a brand new album, and it’s inspired by younger musicians such as Caylee Hammock and Justin Timberlake.
Alan Jackson Talks about Being Inspired By Justin Timberlake’s “SexyBack”
Before the release of his upcoming 16th studio album, Where Have You Gone, the country star sat down with Kelleigh Bannen on the new episode of Today’s Country Radio airing Friday at 8 a.m. on Apple Music to talk about what made his newest album possible.
The new project contains a number of fresh singles, including the song “Back”, which Jackson revealed was inspired by Justin Timberlake’s hit single “SexyBack”.
“It started as a joke, really, I don’t know, several years ago,” said Jackson. “I don’t know about the other music so much, but my kids were talking about that Justin Timberlake had this ‘Bringing Sexy Back’ song and they were just laughing and talking about it. And I hadn’t even heard it and they were just laughing, and I said, ‘Well, I think I’m going to write one about how I’m going to bring country back.'”
Alan Jackson said that at the time he was merely teasing the idea of writing a song about bringing country back, but pressure from his kids led him to actually work on the song.
“I didn’t write it from a position that I’m going to bring country back,” Jackson explained. “I think it was just more of a fun song and I ended up taking all these memories, visual memories of things that I remember growing up in the South in a small town, which is so relatable to country music.”
Later on in the episode, Alan Jackson, who’s numerous achievements range from winning the Grammy twice and being one of the bestselling artists of all time, talked about a past connection with Justin Timberlake, 40, from his past. But this time round, it’s the country icon inspiring the pop musician.
“Talking about Justin Timberlake now, it just popped in my head when you were talking about young people loving that, a few years ago, somebody told me that there was a clip of him singing one of my songs,” said Jackson. “I don’t remember which one, ‘Don’t Rock the Jukebox’, or something — I can’t remember which song it was — on something when he was a kid.”
In reality, Timberlake performed “Love’s Got a Hold On You” during his Star Search appearance.
“Well he grew up in Memphis, you know he was listening to AJ growing up!” Bannen explained.
“You got a young generation when the ’90s were coming along and he was at the time a young kid and he liked that kind of stuff, or at least that particular song,” Jackson said. “But you just never know.”
Where Have You Gone Details
Alan Jackson’s latest album, Where Have You Gone, features 21 songs that will contain the singles “Way Down in My Whiskey,” “Things That Matter,” along with “Back” and more. It will also feature the songs “I do” and “You’ll Always Be My Girl” written for his three daughter’s wedding.
“[Mattie] asked if I’d write her a father/daughter dance song and I said I’d try to, so I wrote ‘You’ll Always Be My Baby.’ I told all three of them, ‘Look, you all three are going to have to use this song, I don’t want to have to write three of them.’ So actually, they’ve used it twice now: for Mattie’s wedding and Ali got married last summer. I wasn’t trying to write ‘I Do.’ It just kind of came out before Ali got married. I wrote it and they said, ‘Let’s do a little recording and we’ll play it at Ali’s reception.’ I was going to put [the songs] on there like bonus tracks on the end and then [the label] said, ‘No, we want to put them up there in the regular mix.’”
About the entire album and how it sounds, Jackson told Rolling Stone last month that “It’s a little harder country than even I’ve done in the past. Real country songs are life and love and heartache, drinking and Mama and having a good time…but it’s the sounds of the instruments, too. The steel and acoustic guitar, the fiddle – those things have a sound and a tone…and getting that right, the way those things make you feel, that’s country, too.”
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