Carrie Underwood Loves Pat Green’s “While I Was Away”

Texas Music Veteran Says Words Can't Describe His Gratitude

It’s pretty rare for a songwriter to have no words. But Pat Green says that after Carrie Underwood tweeted about his new single, “While I Was Away,” on Sunday (July 19), he hasn’t been able to find the right words to thank her.

After Underwood posted what she posted, Green’s friend sent him an immediate text just saying, “Go check out Twitter.”

What he saw was a tweet Underwood sent to her 4.64 million followers:

“Obviously, I don’t have the words to thank her for saying such kind words. She’s heard a thousand songs, I’m sure, so she knows what a good one sounds like,” Green told me about how he felt when he saw Underwood’s tweet. “It wasn’t hype. It’s not like I texted her — not like I even have her number — and asked her to tweet. She did it completely on her own.”

Green replied to her tweet, saying he was glad it connected with her. And the song’s writer, Zane Williams, chimed in with, “Whoa! @carrieunderwood likes my song! #DayMade Means a lot, coming from the best female voice in country music.”

The song is a moving tribute to parents whose jobs keep them away from their kids, whether it’s a job like Green’s or one of a million other jobs that might have you spending time on the road — military personnel, truck drivers, firefighters, coaches, salespeople and more.

“It’s such an honest song. Because I don’t care if you leave the house for even one day for work, when you come home, you’re excited to see your kids. It feels like they grow and change every single day. Even the way they look at you,” Green said. “The song really gets straight to the marrow of that.”

Green told me he remembers well when his two kids — Kellison, 11 and Rainey, 9 — were younger, and he and his wife would take them on the road.

“We’d just keep them on the lower bunks on the bus,” he explained. “But now they’re too big and too busy.”

So since his kids can’t be with him on the road as often, Green likes to get off the road more often.

“As I get older, the time frame that I can handle being away gets shorter. When I was on the Chesney tour, man, I used to be able to be away for six months,” he recalled. “And now it’s like after eight days, I’m like, ‘I’m going home. I don’t care if I have to walk, I’m gonna go home and see my family.’ It’s fun to be normal. It’s fun to be part of someone else’s life as they grow up. It’s the most fulfilling thing in the world. I’m sure that’s what Carrie was thinking, and she’ll understand it even more as time goes on.”

“While I Was Away” is on Green’s upcoming album, Home, due out Aug. 14.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.