By sampling Webb Pierce’s 1953 No. 1 hit, “There Stands the Glass,” in his current single, “Hard to Forget,” Sam Hunt has introduced Webb’s iconic song to a new generation of country music fans.
While hardcore, old-school country fans may liken Sam’s sampling to blasphemy, the closer truth is that Sam has opened up the ears of younger fans to a country song that’s more than 65 years old—and that’s a great thing. Not to mention, there are royalty checks for everyone involved. “Hard to Forget” was co-penned by Sam, Luke Laird, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne and Ashley Gorley, as well as crediting “There Stands the Glass” songwriters Audrey Grisham, Russ Hull and Mary Jean Shurtz.
As Sam told Kix Brooks of American Country Countdown, he follows his gut when it comes to sampling tunes.
“I wish I could break it down, but it’s more intuitive than anything else,” says Sam to Kix. “It’s a feel. You know, you can just . . . start playing. You can start sampling country songs and put drum sounds with ’em or change the chord progression a little bit, and it’s hard to say why they don’t work. You can sit in a room and play and start combining eras of country music with modern drum sounds and . . . it’s like, ‘No, no, no, no, no,’ and you miss a lot more than you hit, and I’ve missed a lot with other attempts at doing what the Webb Pierce sample does, but when I heard that one, I knew it was right, and I don’t know why, it just felt right.”
Watch Sam’s new acoustic video for “Hard to Forget.”
photo by Curtis Hilbun, AFF-USA.com