How Little Big Town’s Kids Inspired Songs on ‘Nightfall’
Little Big Town's kids show up on their new Nightfall in unconventional ways. No, they're not physically on the album (even if the Little Big Kids think they're ready to perform), but they inform some of the important emotions on songs "Problem Child" and "Bluebird."
Karen Fairchild and Jimi Westbrook have a son, Phillip Sweet and his wife have a daughter, and Kimberly Schlapman and her husband have two daughters. Even if they wanted to, they couldn't avoid the influence parenting has on their songwriting. The group wrote "Problem Child" with Sean McConnell and Tofer Brown and focused on what it's like to grow up in 2020 America, with social media adding more pressures than they knew as children.
"Our young people are so inundated with negativity on social media and you start feeling like, as a kid, an outsider,” Westbrook tells Taste of Country Nights, as his bandmates nod in approval. “That’s what that song is about. And it’s about being hopeful and knowing everybody feels like that sometimes."
"Bluebird" packs a similar message of hope, Sweet points out. Fairchild wrote the peaceful penultimate song with Daniel Tashian and Ian Fitchuk, and she takes lead singing:
"Nothing's take my love away / Keep it in your heart for a rainy day / Close your eyes and it finds its way to you / And if the highway gets to dark / Call my name, let it catch a spark / I'll be there for you / Call me honey, I'll come runnin'."
"It can relate to anyone, whether you're a child or not," Sweet shares. "You are special, your journey is important and there is always someone looking out for you."
WATCH: Little Big Town Reveal Their Favorite Songs From Nightfall
Mothers and fathers support you, but they'll also tell it like it is. A humorous aside came when the Little Big Town gang were asked about their kids' music collective, known as Little Big Kids.
“Our kids, they don’t practice,” the forever sunny Schlapman says. “They’ll have a 30 second conversation and then they’ve 'practiced.'"
"I think they see us at soundcheck, they don’t see the hours that we put in, or the years,” Fairchild adds. “So they check their instruments for 10 minutes and they’re done."
"We make it look too easy," Westbrook cracks.
So, don't look for the mini-version of Little Big Town to turn up on stage at any upcoming Nightfall Tour stops, even if they'll be traveling with the band via bus. The tour begins on Jan. 16 in New York City, one night before the release of Nightfall, the band's ninth studio album and first since The Breaker in 2017.
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