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Track Review

An old-fashioned bit of rural folk wisdom ponders why any man would feel compelled to buy a particular cow if he could get her milk for free. Translation: No need to marry a woman if she's willing to sleep with someone without a ring on her finger.

That sets up, more or less, a woman's radically old-fashioned change of heart on Little Big Town's latest country hit, "Little White Church." She not so subtly implies that she's had enough of her slick-talkin' man's perpetually unfulfilled promises to make an honest woman out of her, and it's time for some action—as in, matrimonial action.

"You been singing that same old song/Far too long, far too long/Say you'll buy me a shiny ring/But your words don't mean a thing," sings Little Big Town's Karen Fairchild. "No more calling me baby/No more loving like crazy/'Til you take me down/ … Take me down to the little white church."

Is her man still in the dark about what she means? She seems to think so because she goes on: "You can't ride this gravy train/Anymore anyways/There's a price for keeping me/I might be cheap, but I ain't free/ … No more chicken and gravy, ain't gonna have your baby." And besides, she adds, "Charming devil, silver tongue/ … Mama warned me 'bout your games/She don't like you anyways."

Speaking of Mama, she plays an odd, theme-changing role in this song's video. Fairchild steps into the knee-high boots of the done-wrong protagonist. Wearing a low-cut wedding dress with an equally high hemline, she (and the other three members of the band) take a hand-clappin', boot-stompin', slide-guitar playin', four-part-harmony singin' walk from her house to the church. When they get to the little white chapel for the ceremony, though, the groom is nowhere to be seen. Why? Well, because Mama knocked him out with chloroform and stuffed him in a car truck. But that doesn't stop the angry bride—who wrongly believes she's been jilted once more—and her wedding guests from partying on anyway, groom or no groom.

Little Big Town's 10th hit on the country chart and fourth to climb onto Billboard's Hot 100 continues to showcase this quartet's blend of old-school country (both in sound and lyrical substance) with rock and folk elements. Paralleling Sugarland and Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town is just country enough to satisfy the genre's purists, but pop-rock oriented enough to attract new fans with its feisty fusion—a fact illustrated by a No. 5 mainstream debut for the band's fourth studio release, The Reason Why.

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Hit No. 10 on Billboard's country chart.

Record Label

Capitol Records Nashville




March 8, 2010

On Video

Year Published



Adam R. Holz

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