Small Town USA

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"Small Town USA"
Single by Justin Moore
from the album Justin Moore
Released February 10, 2009
Format Music download
CD single
Genre Country
Length 3:41
Label Valory Music Group
Writer(s) Brian Maher
Justin Moore
Jeremy Stover
Producer(s) Jeremy Stover
Certification Gold (RIAA)[1]
Justin Moore singles chronology
"Back That Thing Up"
(2008)
"Small Town USA"
(2009)
"Backwoods"
(2009)

"Small Town USA" is a song co-written and recorded by American country music singer Justin Moore. It was released in February 2009 as the second single of his career, and the second release from his self-titled debut album, which was released on August 11, 2009[2] via the Valory Music Group, an imprint of Big Machine Records. On the charts dated for October 3, 2009, the song became his first Number One hit. In addition, the song fared well as a crossover hit. Just missing the Top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100, it peaked at number 44.

Content[edit]

Co-written by Moore with Brian Maher and Jeremy Stover, the song is a mid-tempo backed primarily by acoustic guitar and electric guitar, with piano flourishes. In it, the narrator lists off the various things in his hometown, and says that he proud of his roots. According to Moore, "Small Town USA" was the "first or second" song he wrote upon moving to Nashville, TN. The song was inspired by his feeling homesick for Poyen, Arkansas.[3]

The second line changes with every chorus (David Allan Coe in the second chorus (which has been altered by some radio stations with their own call letters) and Sweet Home Alabama after the bridge).

Reception[edit]

Dan Milliken of Country Universe.net gave this song a D+ rating, saying that it was "written solely to appeal to a demographic of people who also live in small towns and can relate to surface-level ideas […] Without further development, the ideas just sound really, really clichéd."[4] Karlie Justus of Engine 145 gave "Small Town USA" a "thumbs down" review. Her review criticized the lyrics for lacking details that were specific to a rural lifestyle. She also said that the song "finds Moore a much stronger singer than a songwriter", comparing his vocals to those of Jason Aldean and Ronnie Dunn, and saying that his delivery has a sense of authenticity.[5]

Music video[edit]

A music video was filmed for the song in February 2009, and aired on CMT Pure Country and GAC that same month. Directed by Chris Hicky, it portrays Moore singing and playing guitar in various parts of his hometown of Poyen, Arkansas. The promo features several generations of Moore's family.

Chart performance[edit]

"Small Town USA" debuted at number 55 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the chart week of February 21, 2009.[6] The song then entered the Top 40 of the country charts in its eleventh chart week for the chart week of May 2, 2009.[7] It has since become Moore's first Number One hit.

Chart (2009) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[8] 44
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[9] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2009) Position
US Country Songs (Billboard)[10] 11
Preceded by
"Big Green Tractor"
by Jason Aldean
Billboard Hot Country Songs
number-one single

October 3, 2009
Succeeded by
"American Ride"
by Toby Keith

References[edit]

  1. ^ "American single certifications – Justin Moore – Small Town USA". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  2. ^ "Self titled album of Justin Moore". Justinmooremusic. Retrieved 2008-03-16. 
  3. ^ Josh Armstrong (September 29, 2009). "Justin Moore revisits "Small Town USA"". KnowTheArtist.com. Retrieved January 21, 2011. [dead link]
  4. ^ Milliken, Dan. "Justin Moore - "Small Town USA" Review". Country Universe. 
  5. ^ Justus, Karlie (2009-02-04). "Justin Moore - "Small Town USA"". Engine 145. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  6. ^ "Hot Country Songs - "Small Town USA"". Billboard (magazine). 2009-02-21. Retrieved 2009-06-20. [dead link]
  7. ^ "Hot Country Songs - "Small Town USA"". Billboard (magazine). 2009-05-02. Retrieved 2009-06-20. [dead link]
  8. ^ "Justin Moore Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Justin Moore. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  9. ^ "Justin Moore Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot Country Songs for Justin Moore. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  10. ^ "Best of 2009: Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 2009. Retrieved December 13, 2009.