In the third installment of Texas country icon Bruce Robison’s lovingly produced web series The Next Waltz, Turnpike Troubadours debut a new song and reveal a bit more of themselves, documenting a pure-country recording session and discussing the musical philosophy and growing pains that come with early success in an accompanying mini-documentary (watch that video below).
The two-video combo premieres on Rolling Stone Country today, with the song “Come As You Are” hitting iTunes on July 29th.
“Everything feels good when it’s an uphill climb to me,” the Oklahoma-based band’s front man Evan Felker explains. “When things started going really well it’s like, ‘I don’t know what to do.'”
After progressing from beer joint gigs, where the band had to move pool tables out of the way before setting up, to house-packing performances in legendary clubs and a Number Three debut on the Billboard Country Albums chart for their self-titled 2015 project, Felker admits that the journey was what always pushed him forward. But once the band started achieving their goals, he needed to reconnect with the muse.
Co-written with Felker by Old 97’s singer Rhett Miller, “Come As You Are” finds the group in excellent creative form and even addresses some of their struggle to evolve, which included a few drunken shows and a Twitter-storm of concerned fans.
“The last verse is about going duck hunting and realizing you’re a jerk,” says Felker. “Getting somewhere sober enough and getting your mind right, and realizing what you’re missing out on.”
With a woozy beat and a sleepy steel guitar backing Felker’s confessional lyrics, the song was produced by Robison and recorded at his all-analog studio in Lockhart, Texas, Bruce’s Country Bunker. It’s part of Robison’s ongoing multi-platform series The Next Waltz, which already includes performances and conversations with Jerry Jeff Walker and Kelly Willis, and will soon add sessions from Rodney Crowell, Sam Outlaw and more.