I think Vickye cried when I took this one on. Blake Shelton is someone who very much divides opinion among country music fans, none more so then on this blog. On the one hand his stats are impressive, with 17 number one singles, 3 platinum albums, 4 gold, and countless industry awards, you could argue he’s up there with the best of them. The argument often levelled against him, however, is his success (especially in this decade) has been more as a result of his marriage to country superstar Miranda Lambert, and his own role in the hugely popular talent show ‘The Voice’ as opposed to his talent as a singer-songwriter.
Well his place in the country music upper echelons is a debate for another day. For me personally I’ve always been a big fan of Blake, and think too much has been made on his ‘Bro Country’ image, as well as his personality which is very much love or hate.
In a nutshell, the song is about a couple hooking up in a bar. “You’re crashing into me like waves on the coast, every time we talk, you move in close, I don’t want you stop, I don’t want you to stop tonight, We’ve got the last two glasses on a straw hook bar.” The opening lines really set the tone. Blake for better or worse has never been afraid to experiment, so what we’re left here is a country song with a Latin twist in the lyrics. Josh Osborne, who wrote the Kacey Musgraves hit ‘Merry Go Round’, also co wrote this song with J. Harding and Trevor Rosen.
The issue with ‘Sangria’ is that hardly sits down well with conservative country traditionalists, but then nor does most of bro-country. With many preferring songs about love and the romantic aspect of it, ‘Sangria’ is a song of pure lust. There is nothing poetic about “Wrecking ball dancing…your skin is begging to be kissed by a little more then the sun… the only thing I want to do is drink you like a Spanish wine”. Now for those of a not so innocent mindset it doesn’t leave much to the imagination of what “Drinking you like a Spanish wine” might entail; herein lies the issue with ‘Sangria’ which some will say is a tactless, unsubtle song about drunken lust. Others will say its a song that encapsulates the mind of a young guy or girl when they meet someone in a bar.
In terms of the production, again its relatively heavy as seems to be the case with much of Blake’s music over the past couple of years, with fairly evident digital enhancements with his voice. The tempo never really goes above a medium-fast pace, with the acoustic and drums relatively constant, and the bass and electric guitar giving ‘Sangria’ a kick on the chorus. Generally speaking it flows very nicely.
Personally I actually quite like ‘Sangria’, but as a young male, perhaps I would. It’s radio friendly again to a male-dominated environment in terms of airplay, however with the sexual undertones it will not go down well with those of a conservative Christian persuasion. Overall I doubt he will win more fans with ‘Sangria’ but I still think its a good song, and should still chart highly.
Well above is the video, and to be honest Blake Shelton kinda looks like he’s semi-stalking a loved-up couple, so I’ll just leave it there.