Dan + Shay - Good Things
Release Date: 17 Sep 2021
Genre: Folk / Americana
1. Good Things
2. Steal My Love
4. Body Language
5. Given In To You
8. One Direction
9. Let Me Get Over Her
10. Glad You exist
11. 10,000 Hours
12. I Should Probably Go To Bed
When it came time to pick the title for their first album since 2018’s self-titled set, which debuted at No. 1 on Top Country Albums, Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney knew there was only one choice: Good Things.
“After the past year and a half that we’ve all had, I feel like that’s kind of where our hearts were and what we thought out fans wanted to hear,” Smyers says, of the set's theme and buoyant title track. “We wanted to put out there into the world this hopeful, optimistic, positive piece of work.”
Dan + Shay's fourth studio set for Warner Music Nashville stays on brand for the platinum duo, with its 12 tracks offering irresistibly upbeat ditties and piano-based, brooding heartbreakers. It's all bound together by the pair’s unabashedly romantic sensibilities -- as well as smooth, layered harmonies (led by Mooney’s crystalline vocals) and Smyers’ pristine, innovative production.
Songs from the project began surfacing in October 2019 with the cross-format smash “10,000 Hours” with Justin Bieber. The song, which is the top streamed country song so far this year on Spotify, spent 21 weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart and was the duo’s seventh chart topper on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart. The track landed Dan + Shay their third straight Grammy for best country duo/group performance, making them the first act to snare the award in three consecutive years. The pair, who co-wrote all of the songs on the album, worked with their usual impressive roster of Nashville top tunesmiths, including Ashley Gorley, Ross Copperman and Jordan Reynolds. This time, they also added some leading pop songwriters to the mix -- including Jason “Poo Bear” Boyd, Julia Michaels and a certain top 40 superstar named Shawn Mendes on “Body Language.”
Other musical influences found their way onto Good Times. Orchestral tale of temptation “I Should Probably Go to Bed,” which hit No. 2 on Country Airplay last summer, references The Beach Boys and ELO with its majestic sweep, while the pop refrain of the jaunty “Steal My Love” sounds straight out of the Backstreet Boys’ playbook. Meanwhile, the sweet piano ballad “You” draws on the unadorned early ‘90s hits from Alan Jackson and Brooks & Dunn. “I got into a nerd phase listening to those because they were so open and everything was sitting in the right place,” Smyers says. “There’s just some magic in that minimalism."
Though their sound spans a number of styles, Dan + Shay consider themselves first and foremost country artists. “We write country songs -- the topline, the lyrics of these songs,” Smyers says. “We moved to town because we fell in love with country songwriting and what was happening in Nashville and Music Row. The quality and the standard here is just unbelievable. We make sure the title, the concept, the payoff is great, like all country songs are. But with the production, we pull from all different influences. We grew up listening to all kinds of music, not just country, but pop, rock, R&B, hip-hop, everything… and you hear that in the music.”
As their star continues to rise nearly a decade after they met at a party at Smyers’ house (and wrote a song the next day that Rascal Flatts put on hold), the duo stress that they are content, but not complacent.
“You do have to be careful with the goals that you set for yourself -- because if you try to set your sights too high, then I feel like if you hit anything less than that, you feel like you're a failure, and you can't do that with your music,” Smyers says. “I think we have to be content with where we are. But that being said, I feel like we push ourselves to be the greatest that we can be. If you're not pushing yourself to be the greatest, then what's the point?”
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