The Real Meaning Behind Little Big Town’s ‘Wine, Beer, Whiskey’

Little Big Town’s “Wine, Beer, Whiskey” is one of the catchiest tunes the band has perhaps ever churned out. The song is off the country quartet’s ninth studio album “Nightfall” and it’s a tune the band members – Karen Fairchild, Kimberly Schlapman, Philip Sweet, and Jimi Westbrook — wrote with Tofer Brown and Sean McConnell. The night “Wine, Beer, Whiskey” was written, the group had just finished writing “Problem Child,” a “heavy” song conceptually, per American Songwriter. “Maybe it wasn’t heavy, but it just really emotional,” Sweet told the outlet. “We had taken a break after writing [‘Problem Child’] and I remember asking everyone ‘is it too early to drink? We have wine and beer and whiskey.'”

Sweet also remembers the moment Little Big Town finally got to play Carnegie Hall in January 2020 and how epic that night’s performance of “Wine, Beer, Whiskey,” was. “We had trumpet players coming down the aisles,” Sweet told the outlet. “We were having so much fun.” At that point, Little Big Town was looking forward to hitting the road for their tour supporting “Nightfall.” And then the pandemic shut everything down. “That was a tough pill to swallow,” Sweet said about having to cancel the tour. “But we will be able to play it again. Just knowing that makes you feel better,” she added to American Songwriter. 

Here’s the real meaning behind the upbeat song.

Little Big Town was cracking up while writing "Wine, Beer, Whiskey"

After Philip Sweet uttered the now infamous like “Is it too early to drink? We have wine and beer and whiskey,” it ignited the creativity of Little Big Town and songwriters Tofer Brown and Sean McConnell. The group wrote “Wine, Beer, Whiskey” in about half an hour, per American Songwriter. “Lines were just flying out of people,” Sweet said. 

The fun nature of the song put Little Big Town in a lighter mood after the emotions it took to write “Problem Child.” It was a moment of creative symmetry, with the whole group throwing lines out there and bouncing them off each other. The line that goes, “My friend named Tito, he’s my amigo, I’m gonna follow him around wherever he go,” was thrown out to the group they all started laughing. “It was hysterical,” Sweet recalled to American Songwriter. “It’s a party song.”

In another interview with American Songwriter, Fairchild revealed, “The thing about the band is we do like to talk about things that are important, but we also try not to take ourselves too seriously.” She went on to say, “If we don’t show the lighthearted spirit of the band that just likes to have a good time, then we wouldn’t be fully showing our personalities …”

“Wine, Beer, Whiskey” provides a much-needed moment of levity on “Nightfall,” and it’s the party anthem the past year needed!

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