Fresh off his ACM win for Songwriter of the Year, HARDY is soaking up some well-deserved recognition for his way with words.
A couple years ago, many in the country music media world , journalists, bloggers, critics, etc… were singing the praises of HARDY’s clever and captivating ability to turn a phrase. And now, the mainstream country audience is starting to learn what country music insiders have known about “THE MAN WITH THE ALL-CAPS NAME” since he started writing hits for Florida Georgia Line and Blake Shelton back in 2019: this dude can describe things.
My preschooler learned this fact after one week in the back of my minivan.
Kids love repetition and latch onto songs, sometimes for no reason at all. And while I played a lot of HARDY in my van on the way back and forth from preschool this year, I have no idea why my son latched onto “All She Left Was Me,” except for the fact that the song is amazing.
After only three days and 75 replays of HARDY’s upbeat, funny break-up anthem, my boy understood exactly what was going on. That’s the magic of great writing: a clear story and relatable premise can touch the hearts of man at any age.
Here’s what my son learned from HARDY during his ride to school:
“I woke up this morning, hungover all alone Went to fix a cup of coffee, but the coffee pot was gone”
“Wait, she took his coffee pot? But he wanted his coffee! I would be so mad if somebody took my cup of milk away!”
“She took my 30-30, took my dirty dishes from the sink”
“Daddy, what’s a ’30-30’?”
“Uh… It’s one of those things that go ‘pew pew pew.’”
“Oh…. she shouldn’t take HARDY’s pew-mer (his preschool crew’s name for a gun), that’s not a good choice.”
“I’d clean up my act, but she took the broom”
“Why did she take his broom? What if he spills?”
“Man, if I could find my wallet, I’d go drown in a drink But all she left was me, yeah, that’s right”
“Daddy, what does ‘drown in a drink’ mean?”
“Daddy, what does ‘drown in a-“
“Yeah, I heard you! It means HARDY was really sad so, he almost drank so much… juice that he made his tummy hurt.”
“You ok buddy?”
“Poor HARDY. That is a really mean girl. I hope she gets timeout.”
I think HARDY would agree…
He painted such a clear image with his words that even a four-year-old could picture him sitting in a box on the floor, staring at a square on the wall where his picture used to be.
To a preschooler, possessions are critical parts of everyday life. The strong or the mean take the cars and trucks and first dibs on snacks, leaving the weak or meek with the mismatched Legos and the Fritos.
Grown-up relationship loss, as written by HARDY, Chris Stapleton, and many other talented wordsmiths, is coupled with loss of possessions, physical reminders of the emotional hole that she leaves.
My preschooler gets it, thanks to HARDY.
And probably that girl at school who won’t play with him.