Sam Hunt, ‘Take Your Time’ – ToC Critic’s Pick [Listen]
With ‘Take Your Time,’ Sam Hunt isn’t going to win back any country music lovers who dismissed him and his style after one listen to ’Leave the Night On.’ The song is even more influenced by R&B (specifically '90s R&B), and even more likely to irritate stodgy traditionalists.
And it’s even more likely to go Platinum. Typically, when one group hates a song, another is equally passionate in favor of it. That describes Hunt, his music and especially this single, his second from ‘Montevallo.’
Guitars and piano open the song before Hunt and a rhythm track begin. His lyrics come spoken-word during each verse, only morphing into a sort of singing telegram during the pre-chorus:
“Your eyes are so intimidating / My heart is pounding but / It's just a conversation / No, girl, I'm not gonna wasted / You don't know me I don't know you but I want to,” he says.
As a singer, the Georgia-born ex-footballer holds his own, but doesn’t make any attempts to prove he’s the next Ronnie Dunn. Vocally, he’s more about style than power on ‘Take Your Time,’ a sincere ballad about meeting a beautiful woman at the bar.
“You could have rolled your eyes / Told me to go to hell / Could have walked away / But you're still here / And I'm still here / Come on, let's see where it goes,” Hunt says to close the second verse. The chorus (see below) adds tension and drama to his story. Producer Zach Crowell does a fine job of fueling that tension with instruments both real and synthetic.
Credit Hunt, Josh Osborne and Shane McAnally for penning a relatable story with a twist large enough to stand apart from the sound everyone will surely be talking about. It’s a good story full of color and emotion. Love him or hate him, this is who Hunt is. He can’t be accused of trying to imitate anyone.
Why Fans Will Love It: Hunt pushes the boundaries of what country radio will play further than any artist active today. 'Take Your Time' makes 'Leave the Night On' feel like it came from Hank. Fans who love that, will love this.
Key Lyrics: "I don't wanna steal your freedom / I don't wanna change your mind / I don't have to make you love me / I just want to take your time"
Did You Know?: Hunt doesn’t hide his R&B influences. During an interview with Taste of Country, he listed Usher, R Kelly and Ginuwine as artists who move him.
Listen to Sam Hunt, 'Take Your Time'
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