Songs of a Simple Life
Since the release of their latest critically acclaimed project Songs of a Simple Life, Merle Monroe has continued to charge forward with their one-of-a-kind Merle Haggard / Bill Monroe inspired sound. They’re excited to unveil the newest single from the record, “Harlan Darlin’” – out at radio now. The upbeat track is available along with the full album for download and streaming .
Written by Tim Stafford and Bobby Starnes, “Harlan Darlin’” tells a love story with a prison twist. The track centers around Merle Monroe lead vocalist Tim Raybon’s powerhouse vocals, accompanied by world-renowned banjo extraordinaire and band co-founder Daniel Grindstaff. The song does what the group has quickly become known for, which is telling a story that instantly draws listeners in. It’s that traditional approach, paired with a lifetime of experience that has quickly propelled the group into one of the fastest rising bands in all of Bluegrass, even receiving a nomination this year for “New Artist of the Year” by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA).
“Harlan Darlin’ was Bobby’s idea and we wrote it one afternoon at his house,” says songwriter Tim Stafford. “He sent it right away to Tim and Daniel and they held it that evening! I love their arrangement of the song with multiple fiddles – fits Harlan Darlin’ to a tee.” Bobby Starnes also noted how they wrote it on a Tuesday and the band cut it on a Wednesday.
The band’s innovative release strategy for Songs of a Simple Life has helped stretch out the project’s longevity. Despite just being released in June of 2021, the album has already produced FOUR No. 1 hits on the Bluegrass charts. Other singles hitting the top spot include “God’s Still In Control,” “Hello Sunshine,” “I’m Leaving Town Tonight,” and most recent hit “Goodbye Marie.” Tim Raybon took his writing to new levels, penning an impressive seven cuts from the sophomore record.