Brandon Davis is opening up his heart and channeling country music greats as he puts forth his newest collection of songs, Jesus and Jesse James.
Available now via Big Yellow Dog Music, the album features eight songs, all of which were co-written by Davis. From top to bottom, he takes listeners through a series of stories that reflect love, heartbreak, and motivation to keep fighting through the dark moments of life.
“I felt like these songs really kinda tugged at the country that I grew up with and how they drew inspiration to me with the stories they were telling and the sound that made me remember listening to George Strait albums and Waylon Jennings albums, it just, they felt right. Once we had ’em all lined up, there was no doubt,” he told Country Now.
While discussing what he hopes fans take away from the new album Davis shared, “I hope they take away several different stories that connect with ’em because we tried to include stories about a little bit of heartbreak, but also stories about love and stories about how life can counter throw you curve balls.”
One of the tracks that best represents this battle to keep moving forward is “Afraid To Fight.” This daring tune accentuates Davis’ rustic vocals and bares a true country melody that underlines the narrative of getting back up every time you get knocked down.
Similarly, the title track, “Jesus and Jesse James” finds him balancing the line between right and wrong, and living as both a saint and a sinner. The song is written with references to America’s most notorious outlaw, Jesse James.
“I got me some Jesus and a little Jesse James / Some holy water whiskey running through my veins / Working hard to get to Heaven / Ain’t scared to go down in flames / I’m a saint, I’m a sinner rolled right into one / I’m a straight shooter ’til you’re at the end of my gun / I’ll even say a prayer for you when your time has come / I got me some Jesus and a little Jesse James,” he sings in the chorus.
The rough-and-rowdy tune was penned by Davis with Clay Mills and Peter Daniel Newman during a songwriter’s clinic.
“We had discussed a lot about what I saw in my songwriting style whenever we were speaking to all these writers in the beginning. And I said, one thing my dad always told me to look for was if you can find a good opposite, you know, pray on it. And when it came to this song title, I mean, you can’t get more opposite than ‘Jesus and Jesse James.’ So it immediately stuck with my mind,” he told Country Now.
When it came time to choose a title for the new album, Davis felt an automatic pull to the title, Jesus and Jesse James. Not just for its opposing meaning or the clever hook, but also for the fact that in showing both sides of what it means to be human, he can continue that push-and-pull message throughout the rest of the tracks and the different uphill battles that come with everyday life.
“I feel like because it’s got a good balance of kind of how I view myself as well as how we all kind of have that, we all have a couple sides to each other,” he explained. “We’ve got the side that’s willing to put up a fight and protect the ones we love. And we’ve got the side that’s trying to make sure and show that love, no matter what, to everybody. You try to give the best of yourself to everyone and be someone that’s showing that kindness, but sometimes it also takes being a little bit tougher, showing that you’re able to protect yourself and those you love.”
Davis has already dropped the title track to his new album as well as his heartfelt tune, “Fell For You.” Plus, fans have gotten to experience the project in advance through live performances of one song in particular that has already become a fan-favorite, “Lightening in a Mason Jar.”
“Fell For You” is the kind of country heartbreak song that hits listeners in the core as they reflect on their own experiences of losing themselves to a person who they imagined a life with until one day, it all comes crashing down.
“It is a really deep and emotional song just because I know that everyone’s gone through this kind of heartbreak before and it lays everything out on the line to say, ‘look, this is exactly how I feel. I fell for you, but then I also fell for the show that you put on. And then now I’m stuck here picking up the pieces.’”
Davis went on to explain that the idea for this powerful song came from a narrative in a comic book that found him reflecting on this kind of relatable heartbreak.
“I’m a huge comic book nerd, and it’s one thing that I don’t show off as much as other people might think,” he began. “But I’m a huge comic book nerd, and this is actually inspired by a Flash comic book, believe it or not, where one of the main characters in the comic had fell for someone and it said, ‘man, I fell for him and I fell for him hard.’ For whatever reason, seeing that on this comic book immediately struck me with.”
Brandon Davis previously joined Tim McGraw on the road for his Summer 2022 tour. Throughout the year, he is scheduled to play multiple shows across the South, East and Midwest. His next performance will be held June 3 at the Riverbend Festival in Chattanooga, TN.