Earlier this week, Blake Shelton shared details of his headlining 2019 Friends and Heroes Tour, during which he’ll hit the road with CMA New Artist of the Year nominee Lauren Alaina and some very special guests: the Bellamy Brothers, John Anderson and his “Hillbilly Bone” singing partner Trace Adkins. In conjunction with Shelton’s nods to country music’s past, he’s just released a deliciously tipsy version of “Tequila Sheila,” a Top 40 country hit from 1980 originally recorded by Bobby Bare for his live — and wildly funny — Down & Dirty LP.
Shelton, who already has a large supply of drinking songs in his repertoire, kicks off this one, which was penned by comic tunesmiths Mac Davis and the late Shel Silverstein, with some tasty Spanish guitar followed a raucous spoken intro from Bare himself.
Presented with the same live feel to it as the rowdy original, the song’s tale of Shelton’s card-playing exploits south of the border in Juarez, Mexico, finds him encouraging the title character to rid herself of her red satin dress and “lay down and love me again.” In the second verse, he sings, “No, I can’t tell you about it but don’t mind my gun by the bed, I feel kind of naked without it and it eases the fears in my head.”
“One of the coolest things I’ve been able to do in my career, because I’ve been fortunate, is be a little selfish along the way and be able to record some songs that I grew up loving,” said Shelton in a statement. “I feel like they have helped shape who I am as an artist and were what inspired me to want to be a country singer. I recorded this song and didn’t really have a plan for it — I just wanted to have my own version. I’m a huge fan, and I always felt like Bobby Bare’s personality was the kind I wanted to have as an artist, too.”
Shelton, who is currently appearing in his 15th season on NBC’s The Voice, plans the release of more country classics in the weeks and months leading up to the Friends and Heroes Tour, which will kick off on February 14th in Oklahoma City.