Rascal Flatts – “Why Wait”

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There was a time when Rascal Flatts did pop country better than anybody. Lately, they’ve been doing it just like everybody. But “Why Wait” is a renaissance piece, a throwback to the golden days when it was the trio’s candy sweet, tight harmonies and infectious grooves that defined their music—rather than the overcooked arena-pop (and occasional emo-country power ballad) that they’ve been pumping out for the past few years.

The trio’s first single as roster-mates to Taylor Swift at Big Machine Records, “Why Wait” is a slick track that doesn’t push too hard or aim too high—a fact which paves the way for a pretty good song, sung by some pretty good singers, to simply shine.

Written by Neil Thrasher, Tom Shapiro and Jimmy Yeary, “Why Wait” is a note of encouragement to anyone thinking about popping the question. Feeling nervous? Not sure if it’s the right time? Well, it’s pretty difficult to argue with justification like, “Love don’t need a reason/I don’t see how I could love you any more than I do today.”

“Why Wait” is also a great example of how it’s possible to paint a detailed, specific story while still ultimately creating something that has broad, cross-topic appeal and applicability. There’s a lot of meat beneath the skin of the “let’s get married now” theme of this lyric—it’s full of great details and images that actually beautify the landscape and advance the story, instead of just providing heavy-handed exposition. But the hook is also strong enough that it still works even if the listener’s not thinking about getting hitched.

“Why Wait?” is just great advice, whether you’re thinking about asking her to take your hand, asking to take her to a ball game or just asking her to dance.

I love everything about this song, and I think audiences will, too. It’s got heart. It’s got muscle. And it’s just plain a lot of fun to listen to.

“Why Wait” is hands down one of the best mainstream country singles of 2010.

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