Chris Young – “Tomorrow”

Blake Boldt | February 28th, 2011

Chris YoungChris Young’s latest single, “Tomorrow,” might be the most traditional song you hear on country radio in 2011. One of the most promising young acts in the genre, the Middle Tennessee native and recent Grammy Award nominee has struggled at times to find songs worthy of his talent. “Tomorrow” then is an encouraging development as he continues to fill the niche carved out by his neotrad predecessors George Strait and Alan Jackson.

The first tease of Young’s upcoming studio album, “Tomorrow” centers around a tired theme–“I’m gonna love you like there’s no tomorrow”–but he fits it with a twist. In this case, he’s calling for one final fling before his gal pal becomes an old flame.

Young, sounding emotionally drained from the experience, feels compelled to do the right thing and let his lover go. He neatly sums up the story of their volatile relationship: “We’re like fire and gasoline/I’m no good for you, you’re no good for me.” Though their rocky romance is addictive, he decides it’s time to free himself of the angry fights and frayed nerves that go along with it.

This bittersweet message is wrapped up with plenty of fiddle and steel, and the addition of electric guitar in key moments gives “Tomorrow” a strong push forward. Young, whose warm baritone makes for one of country’s finest voices, offers an emotionally restrained performance that expresses his anguish without any lung-busting trills.

Young’s two most recent singles–No. 1 hits “The Man I Want to Be” and “Voices”–both settled into the same comfortable rhythm: a flawed but ultimately decent man making amends for past mistakes or praying not to repeat them. With “Tomorrow,” he’s singing about a more fully-formed adult dilemma, and it’s just the sort of weighty material that he should sink his teeth into more often.

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  1. Jazz
    February 28, 2011 at 9:22 am

    this song speaks for me when it comes to “him”. :) great song!

  2. Kari
    February 28, 2011 at 10:23 am

    Great review on a GREAT song. Chris hit this one out of the ballpark with this one. I love that he had a creative hand in this as well as a co-writer.

  3. amber
    February 28, 2011 at 10:34 am

    great review of an even GREATER song. this song is amazing and i have a feeling we are just starting to see what this young singer can do!!!!

  4. numberonecountryfan
    February 28, 2011 at 11:02 am

    I am waiting for someone to say this is a great review on the GREATEST song ever recorded!

  5. Keith
    February 28, 2011 at 11:56 am

    This song and this artist rocks. You got this review right.

  6. Cassie
    February 28, 2011 at 11:57 am

    as Kari said “Great review on a GREAT song. Chris hit this one out of the ballpark with this one. I love that he had a creative hand in this as well as a co-writer.”
    I couldn’t agree more with that! the moment I heard this for the first time I said to myself “This song “Tomorrow” will be in that #1 spot in no time….no doubt in my mind and that’s where it belongs”

  7. Peggy
    February 28, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Love this review. Heard Chris sing Tomorrow for the first time live at a show and I was hooked. Fantastic music from a fantastic artist!

  8. Caroline
    February 28, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Great song – great review! :)

  9. Diane
    February 28, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Awesome review and song. Can’t wait for the album.

  10. Fizz
    February 28, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    Looks like Chris Young’s female street team is all lathered up over this one.

  11. Frog
    February 28, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    I’m neither female nor part of a Street Team. But I’m getting lathered up about this terrific song. lol It’s got substance.

  12. Noeller
    February 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    @Fizz — I was thinking the SAME thing. Tough to disguise the fan-gurls.

    With that said, I dig this song. CY has a bright future.

  13. Jon
    February 28, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    Is that sexism with a whiff of misogyny or the other way around? Or just contempt more generally directed at people who, you know, get excited about music they like?

  14. Jon
    February 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Nice record, BTW. My pal Stephanie Taylor was playing in his band until fairly recently, and told me she was sorry she had to quit; I can see why.

  15. Lisa
    February 28, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Chris has an amazing voice, and this song showcases it perfectly, ala Drinkin’ Me Lonely. This one looks to be his 4th #1…and deservedly so.

    By the way Fizz – This song deserves to be “lathered over”. :)

  16. Mike Wimmer
    February 28, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    I havent been a big Chris Young fan, he’s had a few songs here and there that I liked like “Drinking Me Lonely” or his duet with Willie on “Rose In Paradise”, but like the reviewer, I have felt that he hasnt had a REALLY good song. He seemed to be headed down the Josh Turner road of having an amazing voice and nice neo-trad style, but cutting sappy love songs or otherwise boring material.

    This, however is just a damn great song and probably my favorite to come out thus far this year. Plenty of people have been in this position and it’s nice to see an artist come out with a song that is about a complicated adult situation that may not be easily resolved.

  17. Fizz
    February 28, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    It IS a good song. It’s just funny to note all the new names popping up to say virtually the same thing about it (and who likely won’t be back to comment on anything else). It just screams “STREET TEAM!”

  18. Noeller
    February 28, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    @Fizz — don’t listen to Jon. You’re dead on, my friend!

  19. Jon
    February 28, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    It’s just funny to note all the new names popping up to say virtually the same thing about it (and who likely won’t be back to comment on anything else). It just screams “STREET TEAM!”

    So, what’s a street team, eh? I mean, other than fans excited about music they like? What makes such fans deserving only of amusement, much less dismissal or outright contempt? Especially when it has a gender-specific edge to it?

    In the discussion of country music books, someone brought up Diane Pecknold’s _The Selling Sound_; one of the biggest contributions Pecknold makes therein is her exploration of the key role that fan clubs – overwhelmingly composed of and led by women – played back in the day when it came to sustaining and expanding an interest in country music and its artists. So dissing “fan-gurls” is not only generally suspect in terms of what it says about the perp’s views of women, it’s specifically suspect in terms of what it says about the perp’s misunderstanding of how country music has worked for the last, oh, 50 or 60 years.

  20. Fizz
    February 28, 2011 at 11:08 pm

    Well, then, since you just said yourself that country-music fanclub activity is largely female-dominated, and since Kari, Peggy, Cassie and Diane are all feminine names, why all this finger-jabbing about “sexism” and “misogyny?” If the first half-dozen or so posters were named Jimmy, Ray, Seth, Chuck and Byron, I’m sure Noeller would’ve said “fan oys” instead of “gurls,” as I would have myself.

    This sort of street-team deal is kinda like getting your buddies to jack up your eBay seller rating. Yeah, they’re such big fans, but what are they doing to advance the cause? They’re waiting for reviews to get posted of their boy, and then going on and parroting nearly identical posts … which accomplishes? Makes it seem like Chris Young is more popular than maybe he is? Appeals to people who might be susceptible to the argument, “Wow, lots of people like Chris Young, I should do!”?

    Seriously, what’s your deal? Is Aunt Flo visiting this week, from over the Red River?

  21. Kimberly S.
    February 28, 2011 at 11:08 pm

    4 words: Beautiful song, amazing artist! :)

  22. Stormy
    February 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm

    I don’t know that it is especially sexist to notice that Cassie, Peggy, Diane, Kari and Carolyn are female.

  23. Kari
    March 1, 2011 at 12:00 am

    Thanks for the warm welcome Fizz and friends : )

  24. melissa
    March 1, 2011 at 12:54 am

    Um, what kind of single review neglects to mention who wrote the song? I’d really like to know.

  25. Kyle
    March 1, 2011 at 3:00 am

    I would call this a “very good” song rather than “great”, but that’s all Chris Young needs to make a great record… which this is. I’m really looking forward to radio wearing this one out.

    I’m not sure I agree that it’s all that traditional; it sounds more like a power ballad to me. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, I just think this is more an example of a contemporary sound and song done right than it is a throwback.

    Last thing – anyone else notice how structurally similar it is to Gary Allan’s “Today”? I think it’s a better song, but the verses and chorus-to-verse transitions use Today/Tomorrow in pretty much the exact same way. I think the chords in the verses might even be similar, although I haven’t really listened.

    All in all, great song. IMO, this is what 2011 country radio should sound like, not generic songwritery-pop stuff from the latest reality show winning duo…

  26. AtlantaFan
    March 1, 2011 at 7:41 am

    If you want to attack STREET TEAM, go ahead. But I thought the purpose of this blog is to review music. I am a big fan of Chris Young’s, come daily to this site, and comment sporadically. One of the reasons I comment so infrequently is that I don’t want to get caught up in the negativity that some of the regulars seemed to thrive upon.

    Like many of you, I like my country more traditional and tend to favor the country of the 80’s and 90’s rather than what is on country radio today. That’s why I like Chris Young. He’s what some writers call neo-traditional. As a young man in 20’s, he can sing the heck out of a Keith Whitley, Lefty Frizzell, Vern Gosdin, or Marty Robbins song. I’ve heard him do their songs at shows and on the Grand Ole’ Opry.

    So, getting back to the music – I agree that “Tomorrow” may be his strongest single released. I can’t make any comments about the chorus-to-verse transitions or similar chords used in other songs, but I can say as fan I love his voice. This song is a ballad. According to ASCAP, “Tomorrow” was written by Frank Myers, Anthony Smith, and Christopher Alan Young.

    I appreciate being able to comment occasionally on as a fan. I am neither a critic nor a journalist; I am just a country music fan. I read this blog every day and learn a lot about country music. So don’t criticize me if I am on a street team and learned about this blog by reading single and album reviews of some my favorite artists.

    As a reminder, here is the stated purpose of this blog: The 9513 is the web’s premier country music blog, and a go-to resource for thousands of readers in search of the latest country music news and reviews. Our community includes artists, songwriters, radio DJs, promoters, label executives, and, most importantly, the people who make all those jobs possible: country music’s fans.

  27. Fizz
    March 1, 2011 at 10:05 am

    The power-ballad angle occurred to me as well. As soon as I heard the “I’m no good for you / You’re no good for me” lines, I immediately thought of “We’re No Good Together” by Tesla.

  28. Raven
    March 1, 2011 at 10:06 am

    I found this site while searching about Chris Young. I really like it. I hope they radio plays pick up. I’ve only heard it once on my local station.

  29. Bill
    March 2, 2011 at 10:20 am

    I like Gary Allan’s “Today” better vbg

  30. Kyle
    March 3, 2011 at 2:03 am

    BTW, the range on this song is just nuts. He’s just a step short of two full octaves. which is almost twice a lot of country songs. Good luck singing this one karaoke…

  31. Rebecca
    June 4, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Amazing song by an amazing artist…he is gorgeous…Seen him and met him in concert. I true sweetheart… The song has so much meaning, especially in my life lately and i’m sure it’s touching many others just the same……Keep up the good work and i sure as heck hope they play it a little more on the radio!

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