UK country stars The Shires have released the second single from their hotly anticipated second album ‘My Universe’, out 30 September.
The emotional new country pop track was inspired by key moments in the band’s lives, including the birth of Ben’s first son, and anniversary of Crissie’s father’s passing. Heartfelt and sincere, the poignant summer anthem, with its building drums and guitars, declares we must value the ones we love and treasure the time we have with them.
The Shires stated, “We wanted a song that summed up all of the emotion we were feeling at these significant times in our lives, but in a way that everyone can relate too. They make you take stock and treasure the people you have close to you.”
The Shires are also spotlighting an important message in the single’s accompanying video. Their video, with its heartbreaking storyline, tells the tale of a young couple, very much in love, whose romance is tragically cut short when the female character is killed in a car crash, resulting from texting while driving. The band decided they wanted to use the video as an opportunity to spotlight AT&T’s IT CAN WAIT campaign – an important initiative based in the US – encouraging people to take a pledge to not drive distracted and providing a free app which helps reduce distractions whilst driving. More information about the campaign can be found here.
“We’re excited the Shires are supporting our life-saving IT CAN WAIT message in their upcoming single,” said Kirk Heinlein, Director of Marketing & Advertising, AT&T. “While our program is US-based, smartphone distracted driving is an international epidemic that needs organizations and individuals like the Shires joining together to spread the word.”
The Shires stated: “The video for my Universe was inspired by the lyric You only get one life and I want to live it. When we returned from shooting in the US we realised the video supported the message behind the It can wait campaign. We hope our video and song can be used to help spread the message from the campaign and hopefully save lives.”
The issue is one that is strongly affecting the UK as well as the USA according to a report published this week by the RAC. They found the number of motorists illegally using mobile phones while at the wheel is rising, and according to their survey – 31% of motorists said they used a handheld phone, drivers sending messages or posting on social media rose from 7% to 19% and 14% of drivers said they had taken a photograph or video while driving.
RAC road safety spokesman Pete Williams stated: “It is alarming to see that some drivers have clearly relaxed their attitudes to the risks associated with this behaviour but more worrying is the increase in the percentage of motorists who actually admit to using a handheld device when driving. The fact that drivers have little or no confidence that they will be caught when breaking these laws is a likely contributor to the problem and it is sadly the case that every day most road users see other drivers brazenly using their handheld phones when in control of a vehicle – a sight which should be a thing of the past.”
As The Shires’ album campaign in the UK builds, Following a packed secret gig for industry and fans to announce the album, talk of the second UK Country No 1 album is beginning to hit fever pitch. The band are also continuing to make significant steps to launching in the USA having already graced the stage at the famous Grand Ole Opry, adding their names alongside Dolly Parton, Hank Williams, Garth Brooks and a veritable who’s who of country music who have all played at the famous Nashville landmark venue.
On their plans for the UK and US, The Shires said, “It was great to go back to Nashville – and we have lots of plans for the US which will be announced in the coming months – but we are all about the UK right now – it’s an exciting time for UK country and if we were to have the next UK Country No.1, that would be a dream come true.”
Last year, The Shires made music history by becoming the first UK country act ever to have a Top 10 album. The duo have clearly been at the forefront of the British country music movement which has seen a sea change in the opinion of the British public, inspiring the success of other great UK country artists such Lewis & Lee and Ward Thomas. Having paved the way for the genre, The Shires have seen the UK embrace the genre and UK bands making music inspired by US country artists.