Picture this: A country newcomer who only has one breakout hit — “Here in the Real World” — is meeting a country legend for the first time.
“He’s like me,” Jackson says. “He just loved the real country music. When I first met him, he probably signed a picture, and that’s what he wrote on there: ‘Keep it country.’”
He sure did. For the past 25 years, Jackson has been one of the truest country singer-songwriters who has been able to stand the test of time.
And he describes that kind of music as songs about “life and love and cryin’ and dyin’ and heartache and drinkin’ and Friday nights.”
One song on the new album, called “Jim and Jack and Hank,” is the perfect example of that. Jackson admits that that one, which he wrote on his own, hits close to home. Not so much because of the Jim Beam or the Hank Williams, but because of the Jack Daniel’s.
“Well, I’ve had ‘em all, but I’ve always kind of stood by Jack Daniel’s. He’s helped me through a lot of good and bad times, helped me write a lot of songs. He’s a good friend,” Jackson laughs, adding later that it’s not just the whiskey but the music itself that cures him once in a while.
“Music is a medicine for me sometimes,” he says.