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Ryan Culwell's "Never Gonna Cry" — Exclusive Song Premiere

Today we're excited to premiere a Dylan-tinged tale by Ryan Culwell called “Never Gonna Cry.”

On March 3rd, Culwell will release a new album called Flatlands on Lightning Rod Records (Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires, Billy Joe Shaver, Joe Pug). And here’s a little taste for what’s to come.

Culwell shares, “When I left Texas after the holidays I kissed my dad on the cheek and in a serious moment I told him, ‘Take it easy on yourself old man.’ Half smiling, half hurt, he said, ‘Yeah right, can't do that.’ As I pulled out of the drive he called out, ‘Get a real job. Half smiling, half hurt, I yelled back, ‘Yeah right, can't do that.’”

“That everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God's gift to men.This song was originally for my dad, but these days I sing it for myself. too."

Is this song kinda grim? Yes. Is it masterfully crafted and artfully delivered, indeed it is!

So little children, cover your ears, and the rest of you, check it out here:

Culwell was raised in Perryton, Texas, a small town in the panhandle that was the center of the Dust Bowl storms of the '30s. He is no rhinestoned Texas troubadour—he counts Bob Dylan, John Lee Hooker, and Woody Guthrie as influences. In fact, Culwell hails from the same stretch of prairie where Guthrie spent his most formative years, and like Guthrie, he has emerged as a poet of the plains.

At the age of thirty-one, after moving from Amarillo Texas to Music City, Culwell began playing what he calls “bigger” songs. But he heard the flatlands calling to him, and he found himself writing secret songs about his roots on the open plains—songs about “what it sounds like to stay,” thought he hadn’t. Soon enough, these were the only tunes anyone wanted to hear. These songs became Flatlands, Culwell’s debut album from Lightning Rod Records (Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires, Billy Joe Shaver, James McMurtry).

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Acoustic Nation

Acoustic Nation is written by Laura B. Whitmore, a music industry marketing veteran, music journalist and editor, who has contributed to, Guitar World, and others. She has interviewed hundreds of musicians and hosts the She Rocks Podcast. As the founder of the Women’s International Music Network, she advocates for women in the music industry and produces the annual She Rocks Awards. She is the Senior Vice President of Marketing for Positive Grid, making the world safe for guitar exploration everywhere! A guitarist and singer/songwriter, Laura is currently co-writing an album of pop songs that empower and energize girls.