Leave it to Kenny Chesney to tap into both the moment and the feel good. When the East Tennessee songwriter/superstar was working on what will be his most personal album to date, he found himself in a zone of looking at life, the world and the state of where we are now. From that soul-searching, the man the Los Angeles Times called “The People’s Superstar” found “Get Along.”
With a deep pocket, a chorus that sweeps you up, banjo etching and Chesney’s signature acoustic guitar strum, the brisk mid-tempo offers an invitation to come together, find higher ground, exhale and seek a way of living that fosters harmony. In unlikely ways, the melody bubbles up, as the chorus offers a dose of self-acceptance and reality, “Get along on down the road/ We’ve got a long, long way to go/ Scared to live, scared to die/ We ain’t perfect, but we try…”
“Some days, it’s like the world is just angry, screaming people,” Chesney reflects, “all harping on what’s wrong, how other people are awful. The more I move around, talking to people, though, the more I know people are seeking the same things, working hard to get by and hoping for the best for their family and friends. It’s simple, but we keep getting driven apart – and made unhappy. When I heard this song, beyond how good the rhythm felt, I was amazed how simply they broke all this stuff down. Get along… find the common ground… know the basic stuff is where the joy, the love, the happiness is.”
Written by Shane McAnally, Ross Copperman and Josh Osborne, “Get Along” takes the exuberance of “American Kids,” the positivity of “Save It For A Rainy Day” and “Spread the Love” and the roots-driven musicality of “Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven” to a new place. Just as importantly, it continues expanding the 8-time Academy of Country Music and Country Music Association Entertainer of the Year’s take on American music.
“To me, music is what you make it, and I want music that sounds good, but also gives you permission to really live,” Chesney explains. “I think we can get so caught up in expectations, our own and other people’s, and we forget what matters.”
Beyond the obvious notion to “always give love the upper hand,” the chorus breaks it down to some very specific real-life items: “paint a wall, learn to dance, call your mom, buy a boat, drink a beer, sing a song, make a friend,” before asking, “can’t we all just… get along.”
Equally intriguing, the song can be as much an encouragement to move on instead of clinging to grudges, as it is an invitation to find common ground with others. At a time when divisiveness is commonplace, Chesney is about elevating the No Shoes Nation – a place truly without borders – to finding the best in each other, loving life and making memories to treasure.
Without missing a beat, Chesney invokes the bridge, “You know, the song says, ‘You find out when you die, the keys to heaven can’t be bought/We still don’t know what love is, but we sure know what it’s not…’ That’s real. We’re here such a short time, this song reminds us all how to get together, get along and enjoy the ride.”