meta-scriptMaddie & Tae Perform "Die From A Broken Heart" At Home | Press Play | GRAMMY.com
Maddie & Tae Perform "Die From A Broken Heart" At Home | Press Play

Maddie & Tae

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Maddie & Tae Perform "Die From A Broken Heart" At Home | Press Play

The country duo's emotive performance will get you right in the feels.

GRAMMYs/Aug 14, 2020 - 04:36 am

Maddie & Tae deliver a performance that will pull at your heartstrings in the latest edition of Press Play At Home. The country duo perform “Die From A Broken Heart” off their latest album, The Way It Feels, written two weeks after Tae went through a breakup.

They wrote the song along with Deric Ruttan and Jonathan Singleton. The award-winning duo met in Texas and have since gained fans for tracks like "Girl In A Country Song." They wrote nearly 200 songs before landing a record deal. 

Watch the touching performance to learn more about the rising singer/songwriters. 

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Press Play: Watch Tish Melton Preview Debut EP With A Stripped-Down Performance Of "Sober"
Tish Melton

Photo: Courtesy of Tish Melton

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Press Play: Watch Tish Melton Preview Debut EP With A Stripped-Down Performance Of "Sober"

Indie pop newcomer — and Brandi Carlile's mentee — Tish Melton premieres "Sober," an emotional track from her upcoming EP, 'When We're Older,' out March 1.

GRAMMYs/Feb 13, 2024 - 07:50 pm

Beneath the empty bottles, Tish Melton wants to know if her love is true; to her, drunken confessions of love mean nothing. It's what happens when the party's over and no one is watching — that's when she sees that person at their most authentic.

"You're standing close/ But you're so far away/ Your eyes are closed/ But you see me anyway," Melton sings on the bridge of her emotional track "Sober." "And I swear you told me you love me on the walk home/ If you meant it, I'll never know/ I think we should stay sober."

In this episode of Press Play, the indie pop newcomer premieres "Sober" with a raw and intimate acoustic performance.

"Sober" is an unreleased track from her upcoming first EP, When We're Older, which arrives on March 1. Melton previously released three singles in 2023, "Damage," "The Chase," and "Michelle."

As she prepares her debut project, Melton already has a major supporter in her corner: nine-time GRAMMY winner Brandi Carlile, who has been a mentor to Melton since recognizing her talent at her debut show at the Troubadour in Los Angeles.

"Tish is so young and so brilliant," Carlile, who produced When We're Older, revealed in a press statement. "Like most lessons in life, I learned this one while I thought I was teaching it. We should guide youth in music, but there is no question that it should lead."

Watch the video above to hear Tish Melton's honest performance of "Sober," and check back to GRAMMY.com for more new episodes of Press Play.

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Remembering Toby Keith: 5 Essential Songs From The Patriotic Cowboy And Country Music Icon
Toby Keith performs at the 2021 iHeartCountry Festival in Austin, Texas.

Photo: Michael Hickey/Getty Images

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Remembering Toby Keith: 5 Essential Songs From The Patriotic Cowboy And Country Music Icon

After a two-year battle with stomach cancer, country star Toby Keith passed away on Feb. 5 at the age of 62. Revisit his influence with five of his seminal tracks, including his debut hit "Should've Been a Cowboy."

GRAMMYs/Feb 7, 2024 - 04:39 pm

We may have known about Toby Keith's stomach cancer diagnosis for nearly two years, but that didn't keep the news of his Feb. 5 death from hitting hard. The oftentimes outspoken country music star enjoyed a three-decade career as one of the genre's beloved hitmakers, courtesy of unabashed hits like "Who's Your Daddy?," "Made In America" and "I Wanna Talk About Me."

Occasionally his in-your-face persona clashed with folks, particularly when it came to his political views in recent years. But for the most part, it was Keith's blue-collar upbringing and work ethic that shined through and resonated with his legion of listeners. 

It wasn't until his thirties that the future Songwriters Hall of Famer landed his first record deal in 1993, following years grinding away as a rodeo hand, in oil fields and as a semi-professional football player to make ends meet. The Oklahoma-born crooner would go on to record 20 No.1 hits, sell over 40 million records across 26 albums, and gross nearly $400 million touring — cementing himself as one of country music's most successful artists in the process.

As we look back on Keith's life and legacy, here are five essential cuts from the seven-time GRAMMY nominee, whose memory will live on in the hearts of country music artists and fans alike.

"Should've Been A Cowboy" (1993)

Few artists strike gold with their maiden release, but Keith did just that when his song "Should've Been A Cowboy" launched in February 1993. The upbeat track received widespread acclaim, eventually reaching No. 1 on the Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart a few months later.

"Should've Been A Cowboy" takes on a distinctly traditional tone as Keith romanticizes cowboy culture by referencing classic westerns like Gunsmoke with nods to Marshall Dillon and Miss Kitty in addition to six-shooters, cattle drives and Texas Rangers abound. The tune also reinforces the notion that cowboys just have more fun, whether its "stealin' the young girls' hearts, just like Gene [Autry] and Roy [Rogers]" or "runnin' wild through the hills chasin' Jesse James." 

By the looks of Keith's career, he certainly had his fair share of fun, and it may not have come if it weren't for "Should've Been A Cowboy."

"How Do You Like Me Now?!" (1999)

After a successful '90s run (which included two more No. 1s in "Who's That Man" and "Me Too"), Keith kicked off the 2000s with his fourth No. 1 hit, "How Do You Like Me Now?!" In signature Toby Keith fashion, he confronts his haters by asking the titular, rhetorical question, posed to his high school's valedictorian — who was also his crush. "I couldn't make you love me but I always dreamed about livin' in your radio," he sings on the brazen chorus.

The song is a stern reminder to never let anyone keep you from chasing your dreams; it's also a lesson of standing strong on your convictions. Its message also proved fitting for Keith's career: After Mercury Records Nashville rejected the song (and its namesake album) in the late '90s, Keith got out of his deal with them in favor of signing with DreamWorks Records, with whom he released the project a year later. Not only did the single go on to spend five weeks at No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart, but it became the singer's first major crossover hit.

"Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)" (2002)

Keith was never afraid to share his opinion in public or in song, especially when it came to displaying his patriotism and appreciation for those who protect the United States. While the Okie approached this from a softer side on 2003's "American Soldier," his most renowned musings on the subject without a doubt came a year earlier with "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)."

On the angsty ballad — which was written in the wake of his father's March 2001 death and the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks — Keith channels a universal feeling of American hurt and pride. "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)" inspired an equal outpouring of support and outrage that, for better or worse depending on where you stand, helped cement the song into the annals of country music lore.

"I Love This Bar" (2003)

We've all got our favorite watering hole full of its own quirks and characters, from winners to losers, chain-smokers and boozers. Keith taps into that feel-good, hometown hang feeling with "I Love This Bar," a lighthearted tale from 2003's Shock'n Y'all that makes dingy dive bars feel like the prime party destination.

The midtempo track — Keith's 12th No. 1 — further plays into country music drinking tropes as Keith proclaims, "I like my girlfriend, I like to take her out to dinner, I like a movie now and then" before making a hard pivot, adding "but I love this bar." 

All joking aside, the song, and all of the unique individuals described within it, have a harmony to them inside those hallowed walls. It's a kinship that seems more and more difficult to find in today's world, and a sentiment best captured at the song's conclusion: "come as you are."

"As Good As I Once Was" (2005)

Your best days may be behind you, but that doesn't mean you can't still live your best life and thrive in the present — even if you don't get over hangovers as quickly as you used to.

That youthful wisdom is distilled into every lyric of "As Good As I Once Was," a reminiscent story in which a then-44-year-old Keith recounts his prime as a lover, drinker and fighter humbly. That being said, his pride is still quick to take charge with convictions like "I still throw a few back, talk a little smack, when I'm feelin' bullet proof."

Lasting six weeks at No. 1, "As Good As I Once Was" was the biggest of the 15 chart-toppers Keith tallied in the 2000s. And though he scored one more in the following decade (along with several other hits, including the playful drinking song "Red Solo Cup"), "As Good As I Once Was" will live on as one of Keith's quintessential messages of fun-loving confidence: "I ain't as good as I once was, but I'm as good once, as I ever was."

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Press Play: Babygirl Deliver An Emotional Performance Of Their Honest Single, "Born With A Broken Heart"
Babygirl

Photo: Courtesy of Babygirl

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Press Play: Babygirl Deliver An Emotional Performance Of Their Honest Single, "Born With A Broken Heart"

With just their voices and a burning electric guitar, Toronto-based duo Babygirl bring out the melancholy of "Born With A Broken Heart," the lead single from their latest EP, "Be Still My Heart."

GRAMMYs/Dec 5, 2023 - 06:00 pm

Tainted by years of endless sadness, Babygirl frontwoman Kiki Frances fears she might be "Born with a Broken Heart." As she declares in the chorus, "It's almost like I'm built to fall apart."

In this episode of Press Play, Babygirl deliver an acoustic performance of their track, with bandmate Cameron Bright supporting Frances's vocals with a melancholy electric guitar.

"Born with a Broken Heart" is the lead single from Babygirl's latest EP, Be Still My Heart, released earlier this year via Sandlot Records.

"This is one of our favorite pieces of music we've ever made together," they revealed to Broadway World. "A lot of our writing is character-driven or based on some fantasy, and those are personal in a more subconscious way, but this one feels very directly personal."

Watch the video above to view Babygirl's tender performance of "Born with a Broken Heart," and check back to GRAMMY.com for more new episodes of Press Play.

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Press Play: Marley Bleu Honors An "Unintentional" Love In This Intimate Performance
Marley Bleu (right) and her keyboardist.

Photo: Courtesy of Marley Bleu

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Press Play: Marley Bleu Honors An "Unintentional" Love In This Intimate Performance

R&B newcomer Marley Bleu offers a stripped-down performance of "Unintentional," her debut single with Republic Records.

GRAMMYs/Nov 7, 2023 - 08:38 pm

Sometimes love can catch you off guard — and in Marley Bleu's case, she may have found the perfect partner unintentionally.

"'Cause your love is so intentional/ Wrong time, I think I found the right one," the rising R&B star sings in her latest single, "Unintentional." "You're here, don't know where you came from/ What we got is so unintentional."

In this episode of Press Play, the Los Angeles native sings a stripped-down version of "Unintentional," supported by a keyboardist. The pair perform on her living room sofa, emphasizing the track's intimate nature.

"Unintentional," which originally features Pink Sweat$, is Bleu's major label debut under Republic Records. Her next single, "goodmorning," is slated to arrive later this year.

Bleu found her roots in performing from a musical family. Her great-great uncle is the late Chuck Berry, and her father, Al Berry, played bass guitar for industry titans like Nile Rodgers, Kelly Clarkson and Avril Lavigne.

Watch the video above to hear Marley Bleu's live performance of "Unintentional," and check back to GRAMMY.com for more new episodes of Press Play.

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