Only hours away from Election Day, Keith Urban spoke about the staying power and perseverance of a song, not a political candidate. He made the comment Monday (Nov. 3) at BMI’s Nashville offices during a party celebrating his latest No. 1 single.
“In the midst of all of this stuff going on, so much stress and drama and chaos,” he said, “I think it’s absolutely beautiful that a song can bring everybody together, and we can remember the power of the song, the power of music and the joy of a moment like this.”
Urban was referring to “You Look Good in My Shirt,” a fan favorite he recorded more than six years ago and rerecorded as a bonus track on his Greatest Hits album. Urban and the song’s writers — Tony Martin, Mark Nesler and Tom Shapiro — were all on hand to receive guitars and plaques from BMI as they celebrated the song’s unlikely success.
“It’s a strange journey,” Urban said of “You Look Good in My Shirt,” originally recorded for his 2002 album, Golden Road. He explained how the song was just shy of becoming the album’s fifth single but was quickly replaced by “Days Go By,” a track from his following album, Be Here. Nonetheless, the overwhelming popularity resurrected the song in 2008.
“I think it’s just beautiful the song was a resilient little dear and just wanted its day in court,” Urban smiled. “I’m grateful for the song’s perseverance, for the fact that it doesn’t matter when a good song comes out. A good song’s a good song.”
Shapiro, the newest inductee into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, celebrated his 24th No. 1 single with “You Look Good in My Shirt.” Nesler, known for hits by Strait, Billy Currington and Bucky Covington, also added to his list of achievements. Both thanked Urban for recording — and then reviving — their steadfast song.
“Thank you for the wonderful record and persevering,” Shapiro said.
“I think everybody in town knows how important songs are,” Nesler added. “But in this case, Keith truly did take this song to the next level and became this song’s best friend.”
But when it was Urban’s turn to share his final thoughts, after thanking the songwriters, his record producer and others involved in the process of the No. 1 success, he looked over at his wife Nicole Kidman, standing in the wings.
“Thank you very much, sweetheart,” he said to her adoringly. “This is our award.” Grinning he added, “And you do look good in my shirt — or out of it. Either way. But that’s another story …”