In 1982, Willie Nelson released his version of “Always on My Mind,” the timeless ballad written by Wayne Carson, Johnny Christopher and Mark James and covered by everyone from Elvis Presley to the Pet Shop Boys. For the final video of his “Roots Sessions” series, Ray Scott gives the song his own distinctive spin.
Still, he says it’s hard to not mimic Nelson’s Grammy-winning version.
“It’s impossible to sing one of his songs and not be influenced to sing it a little bit like him,” Scott tells Rolling Stone Country. The North Carolina native also says the song and its lyrics unfailingly spur self-reflection. “I can relate to it because I’ve been in relationships before that have failed, and the reason is because I didn’t keep my eyes on the road as far as doing all the right things and keeping up my end of the deal. It’s about realizing the mistakes you made and the regret that goes along with that.”
Scott addresses similar themes in his new single “Ain’t Always Thirsty,” which was inspired, in part, by his own divorce. Rolling Stone Country premiered the gritty video last week, which finds the singer self-medicating with booze in a cheap motel. Says Scott: “The song conveys a real emotion that a lot of people who have been through a divorce can relate to.”