Ernest Brings Old School Country Music Sound To ‘The Kelly Clarkson Show’ With “Would If I Could” Performance

Ernest country music
The Kelly Clarkson Show

It’s even better live.

Last week, Ernest released his new album Nashville, Tennessee, which is a 26-song collection of a lot of very traditional, old school country music and a really solid project that I’ve been enjoying a lot.

One song in particular stands out above the rest, though, which is his duet with Lainey Wilson “Would If I Could.”

Originally written in 1996 by two of the all-time great country music songwriters Dean Dillon and Skip Ewing, it was somehow their only writing collaboration together, and Dean told Lost & Found Radio with Lori McKenna a while back that he always knew it was a great song that for whatever reason just got tossed aside like so many unfortunately do:

“Skip and I had never written before, I don’t know who had the melody or who had the idea, but when we finished, I thought we had a great song.

There was more to it than a lot of other stuff I’ve written, but for whatever reason, and you know this yourself, it happens a lot. They just get pitched a couple times and that’s it.

You never hear about them again. And then somebody somewhere dug this out of the trash can somewhere.”

It sounds like it could be playing at an old hole in the wall honky tonk in 1974, and I would do anything to hear it as a country radio single in 2024 (though that might still be a bit of a long shot, a girl can dream…). These kinds of songs are what set country apart from every other genre, and it’s refreshing to hear something like this coming out in 2024, even if it was written over 25 years ago.

And yesterday, Ern took that traditional sound to a national TV audience with a performance on The Kelly Clarkson Show, which was filmed in a honky tonk dive bar and has that cool vintage look that fits perfectly with the song.

It seems as though “Would If I Could” has become an early fan-favorite, and I really hope this one becomes a big ‘ol hit because it’s one of the best songs I’ve heard this year and absolutely nothing is more “country” than a good old fashioned heartbreaker like this.

Check it out:

And the gorgeous duet with Miss Lainey Wilson:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock