Wyatt Floresis sending a message with his brand new EP Life Lessons.
With his roots in Stillwater, OK, Flores has long been lauded by many as the next big thing in Red Dirt music, but with the release of his first project, it’s apparent he has his sights on being the next big thing in all of country music.
And he’s well on his way.
On a Thursday night in Charlotte, NC last week, as the 22-year old Flores prepared to play his third show ever in the state of North Carolina to a crowd that sold out the near 1,000 cap Neighborhood Theatre several weeks in advance, fans of all ages lined the streets for several blocks well before doors opened.
The Neighborhood Theatre gets a ton of great acts throughout the year that can sell their share of tickets, but honestly, I’d never seen a crowd there like this one. The excitement was palpable as everyone waited their turn to get their ticket scanned, and that feeling only strengthened over the next several hours until Flores left the stage. But that’s just the Wyatt Flores effect.
With his open book persona on social media and relatable lyrics, Flores has a way of resonating with fans on a personal level, deeper than just the connection between music and listener. This is especially noticeable during any of his live performances, as his stellar band rocks and rolls through a lengthy set of fan favorite originals, covers, and other unreleased music, and has the crowd hanging out to every word espoused from Flores’ mouth.
As he played each song from his new EP sprinkled throughout the set, it was made obvious that the budding superstar’s already-impressive catalog hadn’t even scratched the surface in terms of the quality of what was to come, and now with the project out everywhere, Flores proves he’s ready to take that next step in his fast-paced career.
Aptly titled Life Lessons, the seven track EP covers an array of topics, ranging from semi-autobiographical songs of relationships, the struggles of life on the road as a touring musician, and feelings of insecurity and inferiority that fans everywhere will latch onto, as well as couple of extrospective songs that dive headfirst into the throes of substance abuse and how it can affect those around the abuser. The whole thing is tied together by the humorous “Wildcat” placed right in the middle as a reprieve from the heavy content of Flores’ spectacular lyricism.
I could ramble on about Flores and this Life Lessons EP in particular, but the music itself is what is really important, so go ahead and listen to Wyatt Flores’ brand new EP for yourself. You’ll surely see that he is on the verge of something special, and he’ll go from being the next big thing to the star of the show in no time.
“Empty orange bottles and dirty white pills Scattered on the floor of cheap hotels Mold at the bottom of my coffee cup Somehow I still gotta wake up
Room full of eyes I’ve never seen Staring like a deer in the high beams Tell me I’m nothing with your dirty looks Judge me by the cover, throw away the book”
“I’m taking life lessons Grow my hair too long Become a vagabond And do some wild living No, I ain’t no preacher But there ain’t no better teacher Than a big old slice of humble pie On the road life to find what I been missing I’m taking life lessons”
“In the night the grass was bright It was small town Friday night lights And our hometown hero had an arm that couldn’t be concealed But everyone knew me as the biggest pussy on the field
‘Cause I was 6 foot 5, soft on the outside My helmet too big for my head I never made it off the sideline but I kept my spirits high The crowd kept yelling, “Go red” Well, I never made a touchdown But folks knew me from miles around Hey, I was the wildcat in town”
This isn’t only my favorite song on the project, it’s one of my favorite songs of the entire year. But that’s just what you get when you have Flores and 49 Winchester frontman Isaac Gibson writing a song together, pure country gold. It’s well written, it’s sad as can be, and with Flores singing this one, it feels painstakingly real.
“Well, it’s been three days of running ’round Closing every bar in Oklahoma down And I promised I’d reach out before the show But the truth is I’m too drunk to even know
When that neon turns off, I’ll go to my car And I’ll lie to myself, the drive, it ain’t that far Hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me after all Oh, I’m sorry you were my last call”
“West of Tulsa”
“‘Cause I’ve been a girl’s last call when the bar’s closin’ down I’ve been a guy on stage to the face in the crowd Somethin’ ’bout wakin’ up in a cheap hotel Makes me wanna be somebody to somebody else”
“Well, I’m a shadow between the streetlights Hiding with lost souls in plain sight And if I had two dollars to hold Would it feel like a pot of gold Or ease my mind just for tonight?”
“Yeah, I’m blasting off in the night Waving my hand and saying goodbye to the sky of blue Sparks coming out the back Something’s telling me to eject But I got nothing to lose Houston, we may have a problem ‘Cause I’m up here, I ain’t falling just for you ‘Cause pretty soon I’ll be the man on the moon If I can land this rocket ship made of holes and glue”
An impressive and seemingly wise-beyond-his-years songwriter with a propensity for catchy choruses and relatable songs that fans can’t help but sing back to him, Flores’ quick ascension into the upper-echelon of country music’s countless up and coming artists has been fun to watch.
And while Life Lessons may be the culmination of his career thus far, it’s really just the start, and the sky is truly the limit for Flores.
He and his road dog band have honed their high energy live show through a grueling touring schedule, but that has helped word travel fast, and Flores’ rapidly growing fan base is as fervent as it gets. So, as always, check out a live show when Flores and Co. come through your town. That is, if it hasn’t sold out already of course.
11/17 – The Atlantis – Washington D.C.^
11/18 – Elevation 27 – Virginia Beach, VA^
11/21 – Rock’N’Horse Saloon – Toronto, ON$
11/25 – Globe Hall – Denver, CO=&
11/26 – Globe Hall – Denver, CO=&
11/30 – John T. Floore Country Store – Helotes, TX~
12/1 – Warehouse Live – Houston, TX~
12/2 – The Factory in Deep Ellum – Dallas, TX~
12/7 – Ryman Auditorium – Nashville, TN+
12/8 – Ryman Auditorium – Nashville, TN+
12/14 – Terminal West – Atlanta, GA#
12/16 – Saturn – Birmingham, AL~
2/3 – Beech Mountain Brewing Company – Beech Mountain, NC
2/10 – Bulls, Bands, and Barrels – Lexington, KY!
2/16 – Cain’s Ballroom – Tulsa, OK%=
4/21 – Two Step Inn – Georgetown, TX
4/26 – Stagecoach – Indio, CA
7/18 – Rock the South Festival – Cullman, AL
^w/ Eddie Flint
$w/ Dillon James and Dylan Gossett
=w/ Evan Honer
&w/ Nathaniel Riley
~w/ Jonathan Peyton
+supporting Charles Wesley Godwin w/ Cole Chaney
#w/ Kaitlyn Kilian
!w/ Treaty Oak Revival
%w/ Kat Hasty