The man himself, Sturgill Simpson, is featured on the latest single “Use Me (Brutal Hearts),” from Diplo’s forthcoming Diplo Presents Thomas Wesley: Chapter 2 – Swamp Savant project, which will feature a number of other country stars, as well.
It’s the second installment and follow-up to his 2020 album Diplo Presents Thomas Wesley Chapter 1: Snake Oil, which featured the likes of Morgan Wallen, Ben Burgess, Thomas Rhett, Orville Peck, Zac Brown, and a number of others.
The new song is certainly a departure from anything we’ve really heard from Stu before, but of course, his vocals sound great and standout on the track, which also features guest vocals from actress and singer Dove Cameron.
Notably, he’s featured on the track as his disco cowboy alter ego “Johnny Blue Skies,” which seems to be inspired by his Grammy-winning A Sailor’s Guide To Earth album, where one of the inserts (basically a poster) includes this little phrase:
“Beware the dread pirate Johnny Blue Skies”
And as it turns out, the friendship between Diplo and Sturgill dates all the way back to 2017, when it sounds like Simpson hustled Diplo out of some money in a game of pool:
And back in 2018, Diplo confessed that he “tried to copy” Sturgill on his hit “Thunderclouds” which was released by the group LSD, a pop supergroup of sorts that features Diplo, Sia, and Labrinth.
The music video for “Use Me (Brutal Hearts)” is also out today, which randomly enough, features actor Sean Penn as Sturgill Simpson, after the original actor dropped out the night before the shoot due to illness, according to Diplo:
“Imagine this, it’s the night before the Use Me music video shoot, the actor who was supposed to play Sturgill Simpson drops out cuz he’s sick.
So you do what any logical person would do and text Sean Penn to see if he wants to come play Sturgill for fun at 9am the next day.
Now stop imagining cuz that actually happened. Use Me music video out now.”
Hopefully, this is just the beginning of much more to come from Mr. Johnny Blue Skies, and while I never thought Diplo would be the one to get him back singin’ songs, he is, indeed, back…
Like you’ve never heard him before… check it out:
Back in January, Diplo dropped the lead single featuring Kodak Black and Koe Wetzel, “Wasted”:
Diplo Presents Thomas Wesley: Chapter 2 – Swamp Savant will be out everywhere on April 28th.