Ever since his signature song "Margaritaville" in 1977, Jimmy Buffett has made a name for himself with lazy, offbeat songs about escaping to the beach. Similarly, Kenny Chesney has taken that same theme and recycled it repeatedly, even name-dropping Buffett in "How Forever Feels". While both artists have incredibly large fanbases, Buffett's success seems to be more in the form of a cult following, in comparison to Chesney's long strings of Top Ten hits, sold-out arenas, and platinum albums.
But is it possible to beat country's top two beach bums at their own games? Zac Brown Band seems to be doing just that with its current single, "Toes" (listen here). Riding a relaxed, sunny Mexican vibe, "Toes" may just be one of the best summer songs to hit country radio in quite some time. The lyrics are simple and casual, yet direct: "I got my toes in the water, ass in the sand, not a worry in the world, a cold beer in my hand; life is good today, life is good today." It runs through the somewhat typical images of hot señoritas, beer, pesos, tequila, beer, and rum (and did I mention beer?) but not once does it feel cliché.
Of course, the song is only helped greatly by Zac's friendly, low-key delivery. He truly sounds like he's having the time of his life down in Mexico; indeed, he's so into it that he even pronounces all of the Spanish properly. The guitar accompaniment adds an entirely appropriate Latin syncopation.
While "Chicken Fried" and "Whatever It Is" had a very distinct, acoustic sound, both singles were hampered slightly by fairly stock lyrics. This time around, Zac Brown Band has managed to come up with a song as refreshing as an ice-cold beer on a hot day. Speaking of which, I should probably go get one. (Watch the video)
Read Zac Brown Band lyrics and chords by clicking here.