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“Tonight” by Jarret Forrester

Hybridity is becoming absurdly common in country music these days, if not a new standard in the genre’s alternative faction, but there are still a handful of singer/songwriters around ready to answer prayers for old school purities this spring. One of them is none other than Jarret Forrester, a South Carolina-based player whose new single “Tonight” is rocketing into the headlines thanks to its bittersweet melodies and tuneful leading man, whose charm is undeniable from most every angle in the track. He’s definitely a purist from an aesthetical point of view, but more than this, he’s someone who really wants to make quality country music. 

As many have already noted about this artist’s work, the harmonies really are the treasure in Jarret Forrester’s sound, and they’re anything but bland in “Tonight.” Here, they set up an emotional theatre in which the verses will play out a story of both romance and unyielding contemplation. The lyrical protagonist is facing love and all of its glory, but quickly finds himself overwhelmed at what this prospect really means for his life and that of his lover. The harmony between our singer and the instrumentation amplifies the tone of these words, and truly makes this performance feel like more than just another millennial-made country song. 

These lyrics aren’t surreal nor overly straightforward, which is becoming an increasingly difficult middle ground to find in any genre of music, including those created well outside of Nashville city limits. Though his words are always the central focus in “Tonight,” I feel like Forrester wants us paying just as much attention to the way he’s framed them with the hook. If this wasn’t the case, I don’t know that the arrangement would be as meticulously fluid as it is here, nor would the chorus sound as robust as it does regardless of where your volume knob is sitting. 

This instrumental setup is inarguably a simple one, but to those who might say Forrester’s approach is a little stripped-down for what the modern country sound requires, I would ask what exactly is missing from the melodic punch of “Tonight?” There’s already so much force to this black and white ballad without the introduction of synthetics that I fear including even a faint fiddle’s quiet hum would be a bit much for the overall flow of the music. This isn’t amateur songcraft at all – in fact, it’s the polar opposite. 

If you haven’t yet explored the growing discography of Jarret Forrester in 2021, “Tonight” will have you very intrigued at the prospect. Forrester has a voice that can melt your heart without even singing anything particularly insightful, but that’s the thing about this country singer – it seems like he always has something really meaningful and enchanting to share with the audience. His voice is something the mainstream needs more than anyone realizes at the moment, and if exposed through the proper channels I think he’s going to make the most of every chance he gets at winning America over. 

Mindy McCall

The music of Jarret Forrester has been heard all over the world in partnership with the radio plugging services offered by Musik and Film Radio Promotions Division.  Learn more https://musikandfilm.com

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