Tenille Arts’ ‘Back Then, Right Now’ Is a Tender Throwback to Simpler Times [Listen]
Tenille Arts revisits warm memories of times gone by in "Back Then, Right Now," her mid-tempo, gently swinging new single. It's Arts' take on the classic country trope of nostalgia, conjuring up crisp images of the carefree nights that she — and, more than likely, her listeners — remember and miss from their younger days.
Pre-smartphone-era disposable cameras, ice cream cones from the local Dairy Queen and burnt CDs of Joe Diffie songs: Those are just a few of the trigger points in the song that take Arts back in time, remembering when life was simpler, and the world outside her hometown was still uncharted territory.
"I could really use a little down-home slowdown," Arts reflects in the chorus. " ...I could use a little back then right now."
"Back Then, Right Now" is a crucial single for Arts, as it's the follow-up to her historic breakout hit, "Somebody Like That." Arts' single reached No. 1 on the Mediabase / Country Aircheck in April 2021 after a 52-week climb, and it peaked at No. 3 on Billboard's Country Airplay chart that same month.
Arts co-wrote "Somebody Like That" with Allison Cruz and Alex Kline, and Kline also produced the song. When it hit No. 1, it became the first country single written, performed and produced entirely by women ever to do so (Kline also became the first solo female producer to have a No. 1 country radio single, and Arts became the first Canadian-born artist to reach No. 1 at country radio since 2007).
"Somebody Like That" comes off of Arts' January 2020 album, Love, Heartbreak & Everything in Between, which also produced a 2018 single called "I Hate This" that peaked just outside country radio's Top 40. However, "Back Then, Right Now" is not from the album, and it's not yet clear whether the song represents the beginning of a new album cycle for Arts.
Did You Know?: "Back Then, Right Now" is a song Arts co-wrote with Parker Welling, Dave Pittenger and Mackenzie Porter — the latter of whom is not only a rising artist herself, but is also Arts' fellow Canadian.
Tenille Arts' "Back Then, Right Now" Lyrics:
Brown bag bottle and a burnt CD / Turn it up, John Deere Green / Hilltop sittin' over Friday night lights / Tailgate sippin', little dipper on bright / I'm slow ridin' down a throwback road / Time keeps flying, where'd the good ol' days all go?
I could use a little cold can, full moon / I could sing a little map dot hallelujah / I could use a little back to my roots / That's the truth / I could use a little down-home slowdown / A little bit of look back on how / The whole wide world was one small town / I could use a little back then right now
Ridin' up and down Main in a Pontiac / DQ cone, seats leaned back / It all went by in a flash of Kodak / Ain't nothin' that I wouldn't give to get that back / Come on, take me back / 'Cause...
I could use a little / I could use a little / I could use a little / Back then right now / I could use a little / I could use a little / I could use a little...
I could really use a little turn homeward bound / A little bit of been lost, get found / A little bit of y'all come back round / A little bit of back then right now
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