Randy Houser appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Tuesday night to perform his current single “What Whiskey Does.” The slow-burning ballad is a highlight of Houser’s latest album Magnolia, an LP that reconnects the Mississippi native with his bluesy roots.
Houser co-wrote “What Whiskey Does” with the album’s co-producer Keith Gattis and songwriter Hillary Lindsey, who joins Houser on Kimmel to offer harmony vocals. It’s a typically transfixing performance from Houser, whose voice dips and dives to applause from the audience.
While making Magnolia, Houser eschewed the more glossy radio-country songs of his past albums How Country Feels and Fired Up for more weighty fare like “What Whiskey Does.” He told Rolling Stone recently that he’s aware the new material goes against the grain, especially when it comes to what gets added to radio playlists. “I really love having hits and all that, there’s nothing wrong with that, but I want to be able to make music that reflects me as much as anything,” he says. “If I can have hits on those [types of songs], that’d be great.”
Houser is currently on the road and will play a string of shows in California beginning February 14th. To promote Magnolia, he also commissioned a dramatic short film that features songs off the LP.