It at some point won the CMA award for song of the Year, but the road wasn"t simple for invoice Anderson and also Jon Randall"s "Whiskey Lullaby." "It wasn"t exactly like world were running up and also down Music heat looking for double suicide drinking songs," Anderson recalls through a laugh. Anderson called Bart Herbison that Nashville Songwriters association International just how the track sprung indigenous a friend"s couch come a fight duet between Brad Paisley and also Alison Krauss, by means of The Dixie Chicks.

You are watching: Bottle to her head and pulled the trigger


You wrote (this song) with your friend Jon Randall, that was going through a unstable time, and that"s how the tune evolved. I think the was resting on a friend"s couch, who said among the lines to him. Tell us that story.

Jon was informing me around some of things he"d been with lately, and also then that asked me, "Whatcha got? What space we going come write?" ns said, "Well, I"ve obtained an idea to write a song called "Midnight Cigarette." can you imagine a tobacco in an ashtray in ~ midnight, and also this guy"s sitting there in his lonely apartment, and also his significant other is gone. He"s sitting over there watching that flame simply burn out on the cigarette, and you liken it to the flame of love, or every little thing that went out between him and also his unique person." Jon said, "I love that. I really like it." ... That said, "Let me throw a line the end at you." together you said, he"d been over top top a friend"s couch and crashed. That said, "As i was coming to, i was apologizing to my friend. Ns said, "I understand I"ve been an inconvenience come you. I"ve to be an intruder, really, in your life and your home. I give thanks to you."" The friend stated to him, "That"s all best Jon. I"ve placed the party to mine head and also pulled the trigger a couple of times myself." i said, "Forget the "midnight cigarette!" " (laughs) and yet, we were may be to take my line and use it as the opening line the the song.

I think any artist can have cut that song. But man, to have actually Brad (Paisley) and Alison (Krauss) do it?

Have you ever heard the story of how that all come about? The song was created in 2000. The wasn"t exactly like people were to run up and down Music row looking for twin suicide drinking songs (laughs). Castle weren"t! In fact I had to pretty lot twist Jon"s eight to also get him come come in and cut a demo ~ above it. ... This remained in 2000. The song simply kind of set there for a while, and also then we acquired word one day that it had actually been placed on hold. Execute you know who put it ~ above hold? The Dixie Chicks.

(That) doesn"t surprised me.

Well, yes. They would be the kind of act, and also at that time, castle would have actually gone outside the lines and colored a tiny bit. But then before they can get earlier in the studio and record it, their career kind of imploded, and also they walk in various directions. Throughout the time that (it to be on hold), Brad Paisley heard it in ~ his publishing house. He and I were composing over in ~ Sea Gayle Music, and a girl called Liz O"Sullivan that works over over there ran the agency for him. We walked out into the lobby, and also she said, "Have you ever before heard a tune Bill co-wrote called "Whiskey Lullaby?" " Brad said, "No." therefore she opened up her desk drawer — now, how in the world she had actually a copy of the in her workdesk drawer ... Bless she heart. Ns was therefore floored. She take it it out and played it for Brad, and also Brad said, "Can I placed a an additional hold top top it?" i thought, "Yeah, second hold, sure. It"ll gain recorded." ns said, "Of food you can acquire a secondary. You deserve to put a 3rd or fourth hold on it. I don"t care." however I never ever really put lot stock in that. Well, climate when whatever happened v the Dixie Chicks, the remembered the song.

He said, "What would certainly you think if I had a woman singer sing that second verse?" We had actually not created it the way. We composed it for one human to song all the way through and tell the story. I said, "Wow, that"s a quite cool idea. Who room you reasoning about?" the said, "There"s just two world I think that might do it. Either Alison Krauss or Dolly Parton." so I"m walking around the house, saying, "Oh, i hope they can work that out, please, with somebody." A few days later I acquired word that Alison"s firm and Brad"s agency had functioned things out.

See more: How Many Shots Of Bourbon To Get Drunk ? How Many Beers Equal A Shot

— Compiled by Dave Paulson, dnpaulson

About the series

In partnership with Nashville Songwriters association International, every week we will release a video clip interview with a songwriter about his or her work. See the full interview with Bill Anderson in ~ along with past installments.

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