Douglas Wayne commands your attention with his driving new Americana jangler HEY YA’LL — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
Powered by a steady guitar hook and chugging rhythm, the latest single from the dusty-piped East Nashville singer-songwriter’s upcoming debut album Coyote rumbles along in fine southern fashion, drawling the eternal question “whatcha done done?” while hitting the sonic sweet spot between the roadhouse and early R.E.M.
But it’s also got both boots planted in our currently polarized reality. HEY YA’LL shares an imagined conversation with regular folk in a place like his father’s hometown in the Smoky Mountains of western North Carolina. Wayne didn’t set out to write a “message song.” It just happened. The pandemic, the insurrection, climate change … he wanted to join the conversation without being too preachy and admits the song owes much to his influences. “I’ve always thought Ohio by Neil Young was a great song and I think we can use that kind of song now.”
It’s just one landmark on the freewheelin’, open-hearted prowl of Coyote, Wayne’s 10-song album produced by Daniel Dennis (Beth Crowley, Chris Michael, Callie Prince). Steeped in the maverick ways of Steve Earle, Lou Reed and others, it’s sometimes rough ’n’ tumble, and sometimes as smooth as a Tennessee single-barrel bourbon with a splash of Appalachian agua. Arriving April 22 via local label one horse nashville, the album was introduced last fall with the release of I’m a-Gonna, a twangy barroom ditty about pulling on the reins and taking yourself home before you muck up.
Other standouts include the Young-inspired High Wire, the Jerry Lee Lewis boogie Ain’t Young Ain’t Pretty, the Memphis-brass shuffle Lettin’ Go of Hangin’ On and the Ry Cooder-esque title track, a not-so-thinly-veiled look at the firmament that is the music business. “It’s about my experience pitching to Music Row. It’s about the lip service and bromides ya hear from all quarters. About living on the outside looking in. It’s about talking some trash and being OK doing my own thing,” admits Wayne.
Coyote marks his second collaboration with producer Dennis. The pair first worked together on his 2019 EP Ragged, which contained the Rolling Stones-flavored Partner in Crime. For the new recording, Dennis once again enlisted some of Nashville’s finest, including keyboardist Lee J. Turner (Darius Rucker, Bo Bice, Miranda Lambert), pedal steel player Mike Daly (Hank Williams Jr., Travis Tritt), Tim Lorsch (fiddle, cello) and vocalist Madison Hardy Dennis.
After two years of writing, recording, and the occasional zoom excursion, Wayne is ready to bring the songs to life at a special record release show this spring with the cast and crew from Coyote. The journeyman is eager to throw back his head and howl.