Ryan Adams debut solo album, Heartbreaker, turned 18 this week. The album was released on September 5, 2000, on Bloodshot Records. The album was recorded over fourteen days in Nashville, Tennessee, at Woodland Studios. Though it was his second album, Gold, released the following year, that was my first Ryan Adams discovery, I’d get my hands, and ears, on Heartbreaker soon after.
“In My Time of Need”, today’s Song of the Day, immediately reminded me of some of the classic country I discovered as a young girl. My aunt had a record, and 8-Track collection of classic country the likes of Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, The Carter Family, Loretta Lynn, and others. It was my first “country” experience, one I’d always have a fondness for, and go back and rediscover, as I grew in age, and musical taste. I usually credit those albums and artists as my gateway drug that led me to my love of folk, and alt-country. And to Ryan Adams.
There is a timelessness to this track. The storytelling recalls dust bowl tales of struggling farmers, and a past of struggling families waiting on the weather to bring the gift of crops, and subsequent survival. The old-time country sound creates a setting, as well, of a time long past. That said, it could be a present story, too, of struggle, survival, and of love. It resonates in its message about love and need, even if you’ve never been on a farm, or wished for rain to help save your crop/you.
“In My Time of Need” by Ryan Adams
from the album, Heartbreaker (2000)
Song of the Day
“Will you say to me,
a little rains gonna come,
when the sky cant offer none to me?
Cause I will come for you,
when my days are through,
and I’ll let your smile just off and carry me.”
To me, this song reminds me of love, and of loving another person through good and bad times. Trusting that person to take you at your best, and your worst. To be there when the days are roughest, to not give up when those moments come, even if its hard, even if there’s struggles and tension, even if you can’t fix it. It reminds me, too, that sometimes having a love to come home to, to cling to as the day closes, and to wake up next to, is enough. Even if everything else falls apart, disappoints, or seems insurmountable at the time, there’s still someone there to love, and who loves you back.
I’m grateful to have that kind of love in my life. I know how rare and real and remarkable it is. What we have together.