LISTEN: Tim McGraw’ New Song ‘I Called Mama’ Is a Warm Hug
Tim McGraw's new song "I Called Mama" is a throwback to his years singing about barbecue stains and peanuts in the bottle. The unconditionally country ballad is every bit the warm hug he intended.
"She has nurtured me, lit my ass up when needed (a ton) and given me love, strength and encouragement when I had no more of my own," McGraw says of his mama, Betty Trimble. While he didn't write the lyrics to "I Called Mama," his performance is personal. Given his celebrity it's a bit hard to imagine him stopping at the Texaco for a Slim Jim without drawing attention, but the McGraw of old could have done it. The arrangement calls for distant memories, both his and our own.
There's steel guitar all over "I Called Mama," McGraw's first release since re-signing with Big Machine earlier this year. If one were to compare this to his recent catalog of hits, he'd stop with "Meanwhile Back at Mama's," his Grammy-nominated song from 2014. Both have a message and sound steeped in tradition, a style that looks good on McGraw as he ages. On occasion, that wild fire in his eyes has led him to chase more contemporary sounds, but at 53 his sweet spot is along that bridge between generations, holding out a hand for others to join him.
Did You Know?: Credit Lance Miller, Marv Green and Jimmy Yeary for the lyrics to "I Called Mama."
WATCH: Tim McGraw Talks About His Next Album
Tim McGraw's "I Called Mama" Lyrics:
Got a call from a friend about a friend / It’s the news no one ever wants to hear / It hit me like a punch, it took my breath / He was just getting into his best years / Something like that will shake you up, wake you up.
So I stopped off a Texaco, bought a Slim Jim and a Coke / Parked out by the water just to watch that river flow / Grabbed my guitar from the backseat, wrote a song just for me / And I sung it for the blue sky and a couple live oak trees / I thought of home / Grabbed my phone from my pocket / And I called mama.
It rang a couple times and she picked up / I can always hear her smile when I call / I just called to tell you that I loved you / I was missing you and dad and home, that’s all / I got to really thinking this morning, about what’s important.
And from now on / I ain’t gonna wait so long.
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