Thursday, May 21, 2020
– Mac McAnally, a Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee and 10-time CMA Musician of the Year, will be out with "Once in a Lifetime" on July 31 on Mailboat Records.
Mailboat is the label owned by Jimmy Bufffett. McAnally is a longstanding member of Buffett's Coral Reefer Band. McAnally had a hand in writing every song except Lennon and McCartney's "Norwegian Wood."
The title track, which McAnally wrote with Drake White, is the first single. The song came about when McAnally and White saw each other at a local breakfast spot. When White asked if he was enjoying himself these days, McAnally said, "Yeah, every day. Every day is once in a lifetime." White immediately replied, "We need to get together to write that."
While participating in an art project - novels were given to songwriters and visual artists, who would then create a piece based on their response to the book - McAnally found himself immersed in Harrison Scott Key's memoir, "The World's Largest Man."
"The author came from the same part of the country as me and it woke up a bunch of stuff about my childhood - what it was like hanging with my dad, going to the drugstore, talking about football, politics and religion," McAnally said. "That opened up that part of my brain that I haven't been down into for a while."
Connecting his upbringing in Belmont, Miss. With the book led McAnally to write the swaggering, album-opening shuffle, "Alive and in Between."
"All the way back to the beginning, my songwriting has been built around my guitar playing because I'm not a very confident singer," he said. "I was always trying to make a guitar part sound like a whole arrangement."
Much of the album reflects McAnally's approach: arrangements based around the guitar with percussion and few auxiliary instruments rounding out each tune. A few exceptions are "Just Right," which was recorded with the Coral Reefer Band in Key West during time off from making a Buffett record, and the bluegrass feel of "Brand New Broken Hear,"
"I'm interested in all kinds of music," he said. "There's obviously some Buffett influence on a few of the things, and I've been playing country music and gospel music all my life. So, there's that influence, too."
Assessing the disc, McAnally said, "I see a guy trying to be a good representation of a human being. I hope there's something in what I do that in some way can make someone else's life a little bit better, too. That's really what I'm shooting for."
The track list is:
Alive and In Between (Mac McAnally)
Almost All Good (Mac McAnally)
Once in a Lifetime feat. Drake White (Drake White and Mac McAnally)
First Sign of Trouble (Mac McAnally)
That's Why They Call It Falling (Mac McAnally)
Changing Channels (Jimmy Buffett, Mac McAnally)
Just Right (Will Kimbrough, Mac McAnally)
Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) (Paul McCartney and John Lennon)
Good Guys Win (Roger Guth, Mac McAnally)
Just Like It Matters (Mac McAnally)
Brand New Broken Heart (Mac McAnally)
The Better Part of Living (Mac McAnally)