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Track Review

Perhaps you’ve heard of them. You know, Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney?

Well, if you haven’t, let me tell you what I know. Dan is from Pennsylvania, Shay is from Arkansas. The two met in Nashville as their separate musical journeys converged on the country capital of the universe. Together, they formed the band Dan + Shay.

If you’ve previously heard their music, you may have confused them with Rascal Flatts. The two groups share a similar sound, but Dan + Shay have something else to offer, too: catchy, cheerful country-pop. That said, the guys' latest single, "Tequila," isn't nearly as upbeat as some of their previous material. Instead, it's a slow, sad piano ballad.

And it's a messy one at that, telling the story of a man who remembers a former love only when he’s had too much of a certain drink.

Tequila + Memories

There's a lot of liquor in "Tequila"—and not just the kinds referenced in this tune's title. Against a backdrop of piano and guitar melodies, Dan + Shay namecheck a variety of alcoholic beverages that the song's narrator can imbibe with seemingly little consequence: "I can drink whiskey and red wine/Champagne all night/Little scotch on the rocks and I’m fine, I’m fine.”

Then there's tequila: “When I taste tequila, baby I still see ya'.”

The memory of the woman in question is quite vivid. He remembers her “cutting up the floor in a sorority t-shirt/The same one you wore when we were/Sky high in Colorado, your lips pressed against the bottle.”

Funny thing is, he can do all sorts of things and not think of her: “I can kiss somebody brand new and not even think about you/I can show up to the same bar/Hear the same songs in my car."

A little bit of that famous Mexican drink, however, is all it takes for the flashbacks to start.

A Happier Ending?

The video features a gorgeous mountain backdrop and two unsuspecting young women that happen upon a man sitting in the wilderness while they're snowshoeing up a road. They call out to him, but he cannot hear them because he’s deaf. So they walk up to him and invite him into town.

What follows is a love story between the young woman and the deaf man she met in the forest. Hand-written notes and a crash course in sign language ignite an unlikely, passionate and brief romance.

They share drinks at a bar—tequila, of course—as well as kissing in bed together eventually. But after an argument, the man suddenly indicates that he has to leave. Four years later he goes back to the same bar only to discover that the woman he left behind is behind the counter … a happier ending than the song itself has.

In an interview with iHeart Radio, Dan and Shay were asked about the writing process behind the song. Dan said, “Libations of any kind will take you back to a certain place, make you see certain things.”

And that's what this song is all about.

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Reached No. 2 on Billboard’s country singles chart.

Record Label

Warner Music Nashville




January 10, 2018

On Video

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Kristin Smith

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