Ahead of the weekend, rising country star Carly Pearce shared a fiery new single, “Next Girl.” The lively, bluegrass-inspired track marks her first new music since February’s Carly Pearce, and follows her chart-topping duet with Lee Brice “I Hope You’re Happy Now.”
Pearce, who garnered four CMA nominations this week, said that she took a cue from country singer and fellow Kentucky native Patty Loveless when she wrote the song with Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne. “We live in a world where there are so many smooth-talking guys who’re so quick to sweep you off your feet – and they always have a story about the girl before,” noted Pearce in a statement. “So when we were asking ourselves, ‘What would Patty Loveless do?’ We figured not only would she warn the girl, she’d turn over all the cards: how he works, how he talks about the old girlfriend, what he’ll do once he’s got her.”
But returning to the studio was also an emotional journey for Pearce, whose longtime collaborator, busbee, passed away last year. “I’ve spent much of quarantine thinking about where I wanted my music to go. This was not easy for me, especially without having busbee my side this time around,” captioned Pearce on Instagram. “The only thing I knew to do was to get lost in all of my old records. I needed to re-discover the music that captured my heart as a teenager: Dolly. Loretta. Patty. Faith. Trisha. The Chicks.”
She continued, “through all the listening, I was reminded how country music always had these straight-talking women who were so strong and sassy. They were flirty, funny, and feisty. And they weren’t afraid of banjos, fiddles, mandolins, and dobro. I used that inspiration, both lyrically and musically, to create ‘Next Girl.’ This is the music that flows through my blood, that comes out of my pores. It’s everything I love – and loved – all in one song, and when it’s rushing by, it just feels good.”
Earlier this week, Pearce joined Luke Combs on Good Morning America to announce the nominees for the 54th annual CMA Awards. The singer-songwriter scored four nominations herself – including Song of the Year, Musical Event of the Year, and Video of the Year for “I Hope You’re Happy Now.” Pearce also received her second nod for New Artist of the Year.