There are at least two truths in life: Being a stepparent is hard, and Brad Paisley knows how to make you cry. How are these related? In his second ever-released single, Brad Paisley praises the role and character of the stepfather–and it’s going to require some tissues!
“Make your wife cry.”
According to his co-writer of the song, Kelley Lovelace, he and Paisley decided to write a song about Lovelace’s experience as a stepfather. Kelley later remarked that Brad’s idea about the song was, “Let’s make a song about you two that will make your wife cry.”
It was Paisley’s second single to be released, and it did just that.
“He Didn’t Have to Be” praises the amazing character of a man who stepped up to the plate for the son of a woman he was dating. In doing so, he becomes a role model and father figure. Something that “he didn’t have to be.”
The song includes some heart-melting moments.
“He Didn’t Have to Be”
In the story of “He Didn’t Have to Be,” a man who discovers that the woman he is dating has a son at home. After finding this out, he begins to include the son with them. He takes him to the movies and out of the dates with his mom.
As the song progresses, the man proposes to the woman. Of course, he is then in the role of both father figure and stepfather.
As if that isn’t heart-melting enough, the ending is even sweeter. It ends full-circle, with the son experiencing becoming a father. After the birth of his child, he hopes he can be the father the stepfather was to him.
It’s a tribute to stepfathers everywhere. And it’s a tear-jerker.
The track went to the top of the charts, occupying the No. 1 spot on Billboard’s Hot Country Chart for a week.
Paisley often uses real-life situations as the basis for his songs. “I’m Still A Guy,” is a jaunty, lighthearted track pokes fun at the modern metrosexual male.
It seems that Paisley recognizes success isn’t just a great voice, but in lyrics, audiences relate to and love.