While “Bartender” continues to hang out in the upper reaches of the country charts, Lady Antebellum have started throwing their weight behind a new single from the newly-released 747. The song is “Freestyle,” an uptempo party tune whose rapid-fire lyrics — co-written by bandmates Dave Haywood, Charles Kelley and Hillary Scott, along with country hitmaker Shane McAnally — reference everything from Macklemore to Matthew McConaughey. (Hear it below.) The song is so modern, in fact, that Kelley initially worried it would throw the band’s fans for too big of a loop. As Lady Antebellum began recording 747 with producer Nathan Chapman, though, they realized that throwing their audience for a loop was the best thing they could hope to do.
“Songs like ‘Freestyle’ were such a departure for us,” Kelley told Rolling Stone Country earlier this fall, during the final stretch of the band’s 2014 tour, “but one thing we’ve learned — and it’s been proven to us over the past couple of years — is that when we do take chances, the fans have responded really well.”
Case in point? “Bartender,” another 747 track that seems to lay it cards of the pop side of the country/pop divide… and still topped the country charts for several weeks running.
Meanwhile, Lady Antebellum’s members are just a handful of shows away from wrapping up a busy year, which included a cross-country tour, several weeks of recording sessions and the recent birth of Haywood’s first child.