A new song or video from Mo Pitney these days is becoming grounds for an immediate stop down, and the only drawback to be concerned about is if the new car smell on all the songs will be gone once his debut major label album is released. It’s not just the songs, it’s the care with which Mo Pitney delivers them. Each performance feels custom made and ornamented with such purity and heart, like Christmas presents hand crafted for each recipient instead of the last minute buys at the CVS that most country songs these days feel like.
Singing a song about dogs in country music is nothing new. What was the old saw about country music in the 90’s and 00’s? If you play a country record backwards, you get your wife back, your truck gets fixed, and your dog doesn’t die? It was the desire to do away with old country music stereotypes that got the genre in the mess that it’s in today, and Mo Pitney proves his devotion to the country medium by damning the torpedoes and writing a song about his dog dying anyway.
What makes “Just A Dog” so unique and smart is the acknowledgement Mo gives to the fact that so much of a fuss over a pet seems silly, at least on the surface. Yet this is also the vehicle for the song to become so touching. It’s about having something that means a whole lot to you, even if it doesn’t make sense rationally or to anyone else, and not giving a damn how cool or accepted it is to acknowledge that love, and the loss when it is gone.
Taking this performance of “Just A Dog” from Moe from good to great is the fact that he doesn’t bust out in alligator tears, though the moment seems right for it, the lyrics call for it, and the camera goes searching for them. For once it is refreshing to not see water works in a media environment where even Cheerios commercials are trying to make you cry along.
Moe shows he’s a man, but not one that’s above missing his best friend. And the combination of honesty, poetry, and performance make for one memorable song.
Two guns up!
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Co-written by Jimmy Melton and Dave Turnbull