Carly Pearce Looks into the Future in New Video for ‘What He Didn’t Do’

by Clayton Edwards
(Photo by Katie Kauss/Getty Images for CMT)

29: Written in Stone was a massive album for Carly Pearce. Before writing the songs on the record, Pearce lost a close friend and went through a divorce. She took that pain, sadness, and anger and molded it into a tracklist full of vulnerable and authentic songs. It was a hit. After the album hit shelves, the accolades started rolling in. Dolly Parton invited her to join the Opry, Pearce notched a chart-topper with “Never Wanted to Be That Girl” which was a duet with Ashley McBryde. Additionally, Pearce took home several awards including Female Artist of the Year from the CMA and ACM.

Now, as the album cycle comes to an end, Carly Pearce released the video “What He Didn’t Do”, the album’s final single. Check it out below.

Carly Pearce is Reborn in New Video

The video opens with Carly Pearce in a flowing white wedding gown walking down a beach. The sun is setting over the waves as Pearce sings about all of the things her ex didn’t do. As the song goes on, Carly wades into the ocean until she’s swimming through dark water, her dress swirling around her.

The imagery is gorgeous. More than that, it tells a story of its own. Carly Pearce breaks the surface of the water, takes a deep breath, and crawls back to the beach. The sky behind her is brighter. At the same time, her facial expression has changed from one of sadness to one of defiance. She was over her head in dark water, but now she’s on dry land, breathing just fine, and looking for what comes next.

Carly Pearce told CMT that she watched the final cut of the video with her mom before releasing it. “She cried because she could clearly see the imagery of what we were trying to do,” Carly said.

Pearce went on to talk a little about the video. “For me, I wanted to show the rebirth of where I am now in my life. This is the last single on 29. It kind of feels like a wash of what has happened to me and I came out on the other side.”

Carly on “What He Didn’t Do”

“Life goes on. You KNOW that when you’re reeling, feeling like the fool, and so hurt. But, then there’s a moment when those emotions start to clear. That’s when you look in the mirror and ask yourself ‘What happened?’  and try to learn from your mistakes,” Carly Pearce said of the inspiration for the song.  

“To me,” Pearce said, “it’s really a song of hope and trying to get smarter before moving forward.” In the song’s final verse she reveals that her ex taught her a valuable lesson. All of the things he didn’t do are the things she’ll be looking for in a future partner.