Lainey Wilson On Writing Songs For Yellowstone: “I’m Not Scared To Say I’ve Been Through Some Sh*t”

Lainey Wilson country music
Paramount Network

It’s no secret that Lainey Wilson is one of the quickest rising stars in all of mainstream country music.

From her care-free, lovable personality, and unique southern accent, to impressive vocals and songwriting that will make you feel every drop of emotion you got, she just feels like a person who was born for the big stage.

And of course, her presence on Yellowstone has helped boost her image on a much larger platform as well, from the very first time her song “Working Overtime” was featured on season two of the show, to being selected to play the role of Abby in season five.

With that being said, Wilson recently sat down with Variety to discuss her time on the set of Yellowstone thus far, and more specifically, how she approaches the music she’s debuted on the show.

“Smell Like Smoke” was premiered on the show but Lainey revealed that she isn’t trying to write a song about cowboys and ranching:

“The few times where I’ve sat down with my co-writers to write specifically for ‘Yellowstone,’ I’ve tried to make sure it’s not so much on the nose, because I feel like the songs that they usually choose for the show are nothing real specific (to the plot).

But I wanted it to be tough, because when I think of ‘Yellowstone,’ I think of heartache, cowboys, I faith and self-assurance, but also about embracing the tough times. I feel like I accidentally do that with my music anyway, with songs like ‘Heart Like a Truck.’

But I kept thinking about characters like Beth and Monica… not necessarily that this was their specific story, but just that rough, ragged, ‘I know who I am, and I’m not scared to say that I’ve been through some shit’ thing.

So we were writing for the show, but it still felt like me.”

And her creative prowess has been rewarded.

“Smell Like Smoke,” co-written with Monty Criswell, Derek George and Lynn Hutton, could also land her an Emmy nomination in the Outstanding Music and Lyrics category as it was submitted for consideration.

Of course, Yellowstone has for the most part been snubbed by the awards circuit so we’ll see what happens.

Nevertheless, Lainey says the blessings keep coming:

“I feel like we’re gonna run outta blessings at some point in time, and it just seems like they just keep coming and coming and coming.

Even hearing about being considered for an Emmy nomination, it’s like never in a million years did I think that that would even be a part of my story…

dreaming bigger, stepping outside of that comfort zone. And I know I’ve like told you this before, but I feel like it always kind of starts with people seeing something in me before I see it in myself. Even Taylor Sheridan with ‘Yellowstone,’ you know?”

She also discussed if there will ever pursue more acting opportunities once the show comes to a close:

“Songwriting’s gonna be my number one, because that’s what’s given me the other opportunities. But when I think about Dolly Parton (with whom she duets on an upcoming Judds tribute album) and Reba, those are the kind of careers that I want to have.

I want to shine light and love and show all those little girls and little boys that there is nothing you can’t do. If they need me to have a different accent… I’m gonna need some help with that.”

A sitcom called Lainey about a middle-aged mom from Louisiana, struggling to balance all the chaos of life?

I’d watch that..,

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A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock