Another hidden gem from Tyler Childers’ deep vault of unreleased songs. You know, those songs that were never recorded but would still wipe the floor with most of country radio.
Called “Honest Work,” it tells the story of a couple that is doing anything and everything to get by. The first verse mulls over the idea of moving to Florida to befriend old folks, with the ultimate goal of stealing their medicine and selling it. The second picks up back home in the mountains where our storyteller is stealing copper wire from people around town and selling it to his cousin at the scrapyard. After all, it sure beats the hell out of digging for coal. Finally, in the third verse, it appears as though the couple’s son has entered the lucrative family business of cooking meth… and you know, saving a couple good “snorts” for mom and dad.
While the song may be a touch dark, it paints the grim reality of people that are struggling to get by in poor communities. Truth is, sometimes crime is the only “honest work” they can find.
Writing real country songs about real country people with unapologetic honesty… if Tyler isn’t one of the best in the world at it, then I don’t know who is.