One of the breakout artists in mainstream country music this year has without a doubt been Chris Janson. His smash hit “Buy Me A Boat” went #1 on the Mediabase Country Airplay chart and as of October has sold over 740,000 copies in the United States. In addition it landed him a major label deal with Warner Nashville and is set to release his first album with them of the same name on October 30. So it’s been a pretty good year for one of the co-writers of “Truck Yeah.” It’s just a shame he wastes his talent on terrible songs like “Buy Me A Boat.” If you go back and read my review on that single, you’ll see I got plenty of criticism for calling the song bad. While it is better than a lot of schlock at country radio, that doesn’t make it a good song and I still stand by my review. But I concede that Janson does have talent and is capable of making good music. So with the announcement of Janson’s second single “Power of Positive Drinkin’,” I came in listening to the song with an open mind in hopes that maybe he stepped up the quality on this single.
Unfortunately it’s not much better than “Buy Me A Boat.” The song is about a man whose truck has broken down, his air conditioning has broken and his woman has left him. So what does he do? He goes down to the bar and drinks his problems away. And that’s pretty much it. He doesn’t allude to why she left him nor does he learn his lesson. Nope. The moral of this song is basically all of your problems can be solved by drinking excessively. So there’s hardly any meaning behind this song. The mark of a good drinking, heartbreak song is an underlying lesson learned from being dumped and feeling blue. There’s a sense of sorrow and darkness about it, as you go to a place you never fathomed you would. This song comes off as cheery and paints being dumped by your woman as some excuse to party. This is why I didn’t like Kenny Chesney’s “Save It For A Rainy Day” as much as many of you readers did. A drinking, heartbreak song is sad and a partying, drinking song should celebrate getting a break after busting your ass off at work. This song tries to be both and you can’t do this.
The other big issue with this song is the production, or the lack thereof. The vibe I immediately got from this song was it sounded almost just like Blake Shelton’s “Neon Light.” The production (and even the lyrics) sounds so much alike, from the overall slickness to the unnecessary machine sounds. It feels more like a pop rock song than a country song. And when you throw this half-assed production behind half-baked lyrics (written by Janson, Chris DuBois & Mark Irwin), you get this generically mediocre song. Not to mention Janson’s vocals are butchered by the production too. This makes absolutely no sense and is unnecessary, especially when Janson has a good voice. It’s another example of mainstream country producers getting too cute and trying too hard to pander to the current trends of country music.
I really wanted to enjoy “Power of Positive Drinkin'” from Chris Janson, but I just can’t. There are so many issues going on with this song, that I wouldn’t blame you if you disliked it more than “Buy Me A Boat.” On top of these issues it’s just such a forgettable song. It’s also completely overshadowed by Mickey Gilley’s “Power of Positive Drinking.” Maybe on Janson’s new album there will be some quality songs, but so far I haven’t been impressed by his first two singles. I’m pretty positive that this drinking song is one of the mediocre I’ve heard from mainstream country music in 2015.