Better Late Than Never: ‘Stoned’ by Parker McCollum

Parker McCollum is coming to take over your radio. Earlier in December, we got the next peek at what to expect off Parker’s next album. “Stoned” isn’t a new song to anyone who has seen a Parker show. I had the pleasure of seeing him in October, and he closed the show with the unreleased track. Normally encores are reserved for an artist’s most popular songs, so the fact that he was playing an unreleased song shows the belief he has in it.
You might be wondering, “now that Parker is garnering national attention, is he selling out?” The answer to that? No. “Stoned” sounds undeniably like a Parker McCollum song. It reminds me of “Hell of a Year” a little bit, it’s a sadder, slower heartbreak song. In fact, the substance of the song is simple. A girl leaves Parker and breaks his heart. He isn’t able to cope with it sober, so he stays stoned. He doesn’t want to face the world after his breakup, he cries over everything, so he just stays stoned and hopes she comes back.
It’s a very simple concept, but I think that’s why it’s going to work. Parker has a growing brand. His music continues to grow in popularity, and having simple yet relatable songs in your catalog help people become fans of you. The song is written by Parker, Brett James, and Mark Holman. Brett has had an extraordinary writing career, with hits like “Jesus, Take the Wheel,” and “Cowboy Casanova” with Carrie Underwood, “Out Last Night” with Kenny Chesney, and “The Man I Want to Be” with Chris Young among just a few to his credit. Mark is no slouch either, with “Simple” by Florida Georgia Line being among his catalog of major cuts. Any song that has these three writers on it just has to be a great one.
Parker is well positioned to have his best year yet in 2023. He should have an album coming out soon, he’s on tour with Morgan Wallen, one of the biggest names in country music, and his fan base is growing faster than it ever has. “Stoned” is a fan favorite, so expect it to be a feature in Parker’s set for a long time. It’s also going to be a feature on my sadboy playlist for years to come.

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