It seems like forever since Miranda Lambert graced us with new music. Sure, she dropped a dance remix of “Tequila Does” back in the summer. Then, she dropped an acoustic version of “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home)” last month. However, “If I Was a Cowboy,” is the first new song we’ve heard in quite a while. As with most good things, it was worth the wait.
As an artist, Miranda Lambert is the total package. Her songwriting is top-notch. When she doesn’t write the songs she sings, she knows how to pick ’em. At the same time, her voice is both beautiful and distinct. However, her versatility truly sets her apart. She can cut bombastic pop bangers like “Drunk” and turn around and do something like The Marfa Tapes. That stripped-down acoustic album really highlighted the fact that Lambert can do whatever she sets her mind to.
With this new single, Miranda Lambert bridges the gap between those two ends of the spectrum with slick pop production, country music instrumentation, and lyrics that conjure images of the West. According to Taste of Country, two worlds met in the writing session that spawned this song. Lambert co-penned the track with Jesse Frasure. Fans might know him better by his DJ name Telemitry. He’s the producer/DJ behind the “Tequila Does” dance mix.
About that writing session, Miranda Lambert said, “He and I just got together one day, one afternoon, for a write, and this is what came out of it.” She added, “You know, it’s funny. He’s a Detroit boy and I’m an East Texan, but somehow we wrote a song about the Wild West, so it’s pretty cool.”
Saddling Up with Miranda Lambert’s New Single
Sonically, Miranda Lambert’s new single is steeped in classic Western sound with a modern flair. In a way, it reflects Lambert’s way of blending classic and current. The steel guitar in the song soars over a strong rhythm section and twangy electric guitar. There’s even a solid guitar solo near the end.
Lyrically, the song is Miranda Lambert daydreaming about being a cowboy. However, it’s more than just riding the range and toting a smoke wagon on her hip. For instance, she sings about a “little lady,” waiting on the cowboy’s heart to settle down in the opening lines. Then, in the chorus she sings, “I’d be a legend at loving and leaving. / Nipping on a whiskey and numbing up my feelings.”
Additionally, Miranda Lambert tosses in some great references to classic country music and at least one western movie. In the first verse, she sings about having “Big iron hips with the holsters.” Later, she references Tombstone which is one of the greatest modern westerns. “Sittin’ pretty on the prairie, baby. / I’m your huckleberry, let me hold ya.” Near the end of the song, she references her fellow Texans, Willie and Waylon with, “So, mamas if your daughters grow up to be cowboys / So what?“
Overall, “If I Was a Cowboy,” is another great track from one of country music’s leading ladies. If you’re looking for a way to kick off your weekend, this is it.