Life is a blink. One minute you’re in the backseat of your parents’ car, being driven for ice cream, and the next you’re taking care of your folks, ushering them into the car to take them to some appointment or another. That’s the message of Brett Eldredge’s music video for “Sunday Drive,” the title track of his latest album.
The video casts Eldredge as the narrator, playing an upright piano on a deserted road in his native Illinois, while actors depict the lyrical arc. It’s all about the unrelenting passage of time, with the child assuming the role of parent to his parents, and helping them relive old memories. “I never said where we were going/I just helped them to the back seat,” Eldredge sings, “Dad, just laughed and said, ‘Son, don’t drive too far, your mama gets pretty tired these days.'”
Written by Barry Dean, Don Mescall, and Steve Robson, “Sunday Drive” first crossed Eldredge’s path when he was an intern at Universal Music Publishing uploading songwriters’ demo CDs to a computer database. He squirreled away a copy of the song with the hope of cutting it when his own career got off the ground.
“I heard that song and it just stopped me right there, in that little dungeon of a room in the bottom of that building,” Eldredge told Rolling Stone. “I held onto it and had the MP3. I hoped and prayed no one would record it. I didn’t even have a recording contract or publishing deal yet.”
In a statement accompanying the video, Eldredge says he wants “Sunday Drive” to be a reminder to make every moment count. “If I could ask anything, just let it take you back to that place, don’t be afraid, ride off on that Sunday drive with your hand out the window and feel the air, and the life in your veins,” he says. “It’s not here forever, but it’s here for now.”