Old Dominion Explores The Depths of Their Creativity And Growth As A Band On “Memory Lane’ EP

“There’s a lot of songs that just sound very different from each other and maybe a little bit different than what we’ve done before,” Matthew Ramsey said of the new project.

By

Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

June 23, 2023

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Old Dominion; Photo by Mason Allen

Old Dominion is kicking off summer with the release of their brand-new EP titled, Memory Lane.

Out now Columbia Nashville/Sony Music Nashville, the project features a journey of reflection by the band, composed of Matthew Ramsey, Brad Tursi, Trevor Rosen, Geoff Sprung and Whit Sellers. 

While catching up with OD members Ramsey and Rosen to discuss the new music, they shared that the completed collection reaffirms their confidence in their work and exemplifies how much growth they’ve achieved together thus far. 

Old Dominion - Memory Lane EP
Old Dominion – Memory Lane EP

“I think one of the ways that we’ve evolved over time is just to try different things,” Ramsey explained. “I think in the beginning, our first album, it was just a sort of a race to try to get on the radio and we were learning how to be hit songwriters. So that first album was crafted for the radio. It was 10 songs that, any one of ’em could be chosen as a single. I think over time we’ve tried different songs that maybe we felt like didn’t necessarily sound like Old Dominion at first, or maybe people wouldn’t think that, but it would always stretch our limits of what types of songs we could do.”

He continued, “I think that this project has done the most of that. There’s a lot of songs that just sound very different from each other and maybe a little bit different than what we’ve done before.”

Memory Lane is named after their recent single that became the No. 1 most-added song at country radio for the first two consecutive add weeks of 2023. It also served as the lead track to their 2023 four-song collection, Memory Lane (Sampler). 

“That song is just, it’s really taken on a life that you can’t predict. You make your best guess and this one has this energy around it that we couldn’t have predicted,” Ramsey said as he discussed their process for naming the EP. “As we record more music, it all does sort of have that nostalgic kind of reflection theme running through it. That’s not necessarily what we did on purpose, but it is where we are as people in our lives, and it just seemed to raise its hand to be the best thing to name it after.”

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The sampler gave their loyal fanbase a four-track preview of their entire collection with “Memory Lane,” “Ain’t Got A Worry,” “Freedom Like You,” and “Easier Said with Rum.” 

According to Rosen, the reaction from this snippet of releases brought great excitement and anticipation from their listeners. 

“It’s been amazing. Every time we put out something new, it never ceases to surprise me, in a good way, how thirsty they are for it,” he shared. “You know, every time we drop a little bit, they just eat it up. Especially being out on the road, we start to incorporate it in the live shows and it’s a big response. So it shows us that we’ve developed this sort of fan base that is just hungry for it and it feels good. It feels like we can just keep sort of putting out new music and putting out new music and our fans are ready for it.”

Following this release, the reigning ACM Group of the Year also unveiled their latest single, “I Should Have Married You.” Co-written and produced by Old Dominion’s Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen, Whit Sellers, Geoff Sprung and Brad Tursi alongside award-winning songwriter Shane McAnally, this song has quickly followed in the success of “Memory Lane.”

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While maintaining their signature uplifting energy with a tinge of heartbreaking within the buoyant tunes, Old Dominion went a step beyond with their new EP to test the waters on some music that offers a fresh take on their usual sound. 

“So when we are comfortable and we feel good about it and we are having fun doing it, we’re gonna create something that resonates. I think we just wanted to accurately portray where we are as a band right now. And that is a very happy group of guys that are really having the time of their lives and appreciative of the opportunities we have,” Ramsey told Country Now

While taking a moment to review the making of the EP, the bandmates explained that the recording process took place between the bustling Music City and the tropics of Key West, FL. 

Getting the chance to create their coastal music in a place like Key West, helped them to feel as though they were transported into a better, happier mindset even when the world around them was telling a different story. 

“There was a couple songs we recorded on the same day, which were kind of opposite ends of the spectrum…It was just a heavy day for some of us in the studio,” Rosen shared. “Some of us had some personal things going on, Russia invaded Ukraine that morning. It was just this crazy day. I remember that morning recording ‘Ain’t Got A Worry’ and it just felt like such an out-of-body experience recording a song that said, ‘I ain’t got a worry in the world’ when that stuff was going on. Then to switch gears later in that day and record a song like ‘Easier Said with Rum,’ it was just one of those moments you never forget, where it almost felt like we were living a movie.”

Ramsey added, “I remember going in to record the vocals and I had my eyes closed and I’m singing ‘ain’t got a worry in the world’ while I’m just envisioning everything that’s happening outside of that studio in the world. There’re people dying and we were like, this feels like a fraud,” he explained. “And in times like that, that’s the beautiful thing about music is it provides that escape. That’s what songs like that will do for us ultimately, is when we are feeling stressed or weighted down, we can put on something that will uplift us. Ultimately, that’s what we try to carry into our shows and our tour. So it made sense that that was happening while we were recording that.”

Old Dominion; Photo by Mason Allen
Old Dominion; Photo by Mason Allen

As Old Dominion continues to build their latest collection of music first with the sampler and then the Memory Lane EP, Ramsey teased that there is something even “bigger” in the works. In fact, he revealed that their next album is “almost done.” 

“We’re very close to having it done. I think anyway, because, you know, the way this has all done is we keep writing and the way that we’re allowed to release music these days, you can just kind of keep stacking it on there. Who knows what we might write tomorrow, but for now, we have recorded some music that we’re very, very proud of and we cannot wait for the entire thing to come out,” he shared. 

On top of all the new music being compiled by the six-time ACM Group of The Year recipients are also in the midst of their No Bad Vibes Tour. After achieving multiple sold-out shows on their first arena headlining run, the band announced a new leg to the tour.

This upcoming run is set to launch on September 7 and will feature over 30 additional arenas nationwide. They will wrap up their continental U.S. tour at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena in December.

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.