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Home Song Reviews Take a Shot of “Whiskey Sarah” by Matt McDermott

Take a Shot of “Whiskey Sarah” by Matt McDermott

by Bailey Johnk

Attention All Music Lovers: Do you miss the music of the 2000s? Do you need a beat to bang your head to? A muddy electric guitar to give it some edge? A male singer with swoon-worthy vocals? Are you nostalgic for the pop punk bands of your teenage years, but ashamed to listen to the same songs over and over again?

Look no further than Matt McDermott.

His new single, “Whiskey Sarah”, is revitalizing the pop-punk band sound in a new and refreshing way. Prepare to be a tween all over again.

“Whiskey Sarah” begins with a very bright and heavy handed electric guitar and a sunny piano melody to match. Both aid to the joyous theme and mood of the song. It feels like a celebration. Long held harmony notes add layers to the song, making it sound almost anthemic. The song is so bulked with instrumentation that the music almost seems to dominate the vocals. There are many factors that come together to create that pop punk twist as well. The occasional distorted radio effect on the lead vocals, the clashing metallic drums, the series of “woah” background vocals being sung in the background, the tone of McDermott’s voice which almost sounds like a mixture between Alex Gaskarth from All Time Low and Martin Johnson from Boys Like Girls.

Met you on a corner real late last night.

You tapped me on the shoulder and asked for a light,

and some people be bothered but I could care less,

your makeup so proper and hair a mess.

Though these lyrics may not have too deep of a meaning, they add exposition to the story and background of the singer’s relationship with Sarah. We get a glimpse of how they first met. She seemed confident and he seemed to like it. There was an instant connection.

Whiskey, whiskey Sarah,

have yourself another sour and

pour me one shot

’cause it makes sense.

Pour me two shots

and we’ll be friends.

Whiskey, whiskey Sarah,

sing the song a little louder.

“Whiskey Sarah” may be a nickname she has copped over the duration of their relationship for her drinking habits. He wants her to let go and be carefree. He wants to have something more with her because he is attracted to her energy in some way.

So when you come back to the bar next week,

all the same faces, all the same drinks,

rum, gin, scotch, rocks or neat,

put it on my tab – I’m good next week.

Wherever they hang out and drink has now become some sort of traditional meeting place for them. A place that bonds them. They are such regular customers that they know everyone and get the same thing every time. He doesn’t care what she orders because he’ll pay for it anyway. He wants to show he cares and getting the tab is a just a little sign of that.

‘Cause your lights got cut and your rent is late,

your friends are gone and your family hates you.

Just know that you need not save face.

Although Sarah has this air of confidence, her life is not all it’s cracked up to be. She’s having money issues which is affecting her home life. Her friends are either in a different location or have left her completely. Her relationship with her family has become volatile, the ties weakened. It’s clear she’s struggling without a support system, but he wants her to know she does not have to be ashamed or hide. He wants her honestly and he will think nothing less of her.

If the landlord’s talking and the dogs come barking,

and you can’t pay your bills for the third time this month,

I will fix it for you.

If she’s on the verge of completely falling apart or losing it all, he promises to be there for her. He promises to try to put it all back together again. He doesn’t want her to suffer or be alone, because he cares.



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