Finally! After reviewing a bunch of not-sexy sex jams, I get to listen to a not-sex jam that sets a surprisingly-sexy mood.
The charts have not been kind to Drake White since he broke into mainstream country in 2013. His last showing (“Livin’ The Dream”) was his best to date, but only made it to #12 on Billboard’s airplay chart. “Makin’ Me Look Good Again” is the third single off of his recently-released album Spark, and in the current country music climate, the third time just might be the charm.
Production-wise, the song is a straight-up power ballad, leaning exclusively on a piano through the opening and first verse and then adding a backing organ and some guitars as it progresses. The arrangement eschews both the trappings of classic country (no fiddle or steel here) and the synthetic sounds that characterize modern music, and instead comes across as both genre-less and timeless, like something Ray Charles would have recorded in his prime.
White himself is a perfect match for the song, with a powerful, versatile voice that evokes both Charles and Chris Stapleton. (While Stapleton hasn’t had much better luck than White on the country charts just yet, his massive sales and pile of industry awards suggest he’s a good person to sound like in 2016.) White’s delivery infuses “Makin’ Me Look Good Again” with a raw edge and a dash of emotion, a combination that puts other singers (say, Joe Nichols and Chase Bryant) to shame.
Lyrically, the song speaks of a flawed man beaten down by the trials of life, and how the woman in his life makes him feel (and look) better just by being in his life and giving him love and support. There’s nothing groundbreaking here, and the song really isn’t supposed to be sexy, but the combination of White’s voice and the excellent production give the song a romantic, almost sultry feel that even actual sex-jams can’t match.
Overall, “Makin’ Me Look Good Again” is a well-executed song that makes me think that Drake White has a bright future ahead of him. If he continues releasing material like this to country radio, the industry won’t be able to ignore him for much longer.
Rating: 7/10. Definitely check this one out.