With the CMA Awards staging its 50th annual ceremony in less than a month, the association has launched a new line of video sessions – the Forever Country Cover Series – that finds newer artists taking a stab at songs popularized by past CMA Award winners.
Drake White is the latest singer to join the pack. Armed with an acoustic guitar, army jacket and aviators, he puts a stripped-down spin on Waylon Jennings’ “Good Hearted Woman,” whistling his way through the guitar solo and capping off the performance with a quick burst of off-the-wall beatboxing. A two-time hit for Jennings during the Seventies – first as the title track from his 1972 album Good Hearted Woman, and again in 1975 as the first of three chart-topping duets with co-writer Willie Nelson – the song helped lay the brickwork for Jennings’ outlaw makeover, pitting his booming, baritone voice against a relatively sparse backdrop of acoustic guitar, pedal steel and steady bass. White’s version takes a different approach, adding pep to the song’s honky-tonk step and reimagining “Good Hearted Woman” as a Jack Johnson-worthy campfire jam.
The Forever Country Cover Series will continue unveiling new videos during the weeks leading up to the November 2nd show, with recent covers including Jon Pardi’s take on Randy Travis’ “Forever and Ever, Amen,” Michael Ray’s version of Kris Kristofferson’s “Sunday Morning Coming Down” and Dustin Lynch’s acoustic recreation of the Garth Brooks mega-hit “Friends in Low Places.”