Pat Green

Pat Green
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It’s impossible to know your limits without testing them.

It’s a truth that Pat Green has employed in his career, one that has propelled him to repeatedly refashion his sound, his approach and his own perception of who he is.

He’s simultaneously a Grammy-nominated hit maker with an outsider reputation, a Texas inspiration and a mainstream country artist who can rock arena and stadium stages with the likes of Keith Urban and Kenny Chesney.

Each of those roles has its own place. But each of them is too small to define Pat Green, who after 15 years in the recording business has earned the right to be everything Pat Green can be. Without limitations.

“I’d much rather be me and comfortable in my own skin than trying to be five different guys to get to the top,” he says.

In fact, after building a reputation as an ace songwriter of his own material, Green is fighting even that limitation with Songs We Wish We’d Written II, a sequel to a 2001 album he recorded with longtime friend—and fellow Texan—Cory Morrow.

Stocked with music penned by the likes of Lyle Lovett, Tom Petty, Shelby Lynne and Jon Randall, the disc—Green’s first for the acclaimed Sugar Hill label—mixes country, rock and blues in a manner that defies categorization. Petty’s “Even The Losers” and Collective Soul’s “The World I Know” will be familiar to just about anyone who gives the album a listen. Others, such as Aaron Lee Tasjan’s quirky “Streets Of Galilee” and Todd Snider’s burning “I Am Too,” are introductions from the underground to a large majority of music fans.

Songs We Wish We’d Written II is an expansive step in Green’s ongoing development. By piecing together songs from a variety of writers, he was able to assemble an album that reflects the multiple genres that influence him as an artist. The source of the songs wasn’t as important as the quality of the music and its ability to connect with Green’s maturing sense of his craft.

“If you listen to my young music or anybody’s young music, it’s all over the place,” he suggests. “It sounds like that because the thoughts are all over the place. You were sleeping on mattresses on the floor, the TV was on a cinderblock – that’s all cool. That’s all we needed, then. Now, I’ve grown up a bit.  As my life has evolves, my taste for music continues to evolve with it.”

While Green was looking for songs for the album from outside sources, he was adamant about recording music that ultimately seemed designed specifically for him and his band. With drummer Justin Pollard co-producing, Green drew up an initial list of 10 titles and recorded them during a concentrated week of sessions in Austin. They tracked another five in Tyler, Texas, then culled the best to get the final 10 cuts on Songs We Wish We’d Written II, creating a cohesive package from disparate sources.

“We all just sat around discussing and if somebody’s idea would sound better than my idea, I’d get fixated on it,” Green says. “I would very much encourage them to bring an idea. For instance, the Walt Wilkins song ‘If It Weren’t For You,’ that was somebody else’s idea completely. There were all kinds of ideas going around from Genesis and Peter Gabriel, Colin Hay from Men at Work – all kinds of crazy stuff from the ‘80s. Of course, we ended up with Petty from 1979.”

They also ended up with a stellar list of guests. Collective Soul’s Ed Roland brings an authentic cynicism to “The World I Know,” Jack Ingram’s threads a snarling desperation into “I Am Too,” Cory Morrow adds a craggy earthiness to “If I Had A Boat,” and former Sons of the Desert member Drew Womack adds a smooth, Vince Gill-like presence as a backing vocalist on the driving “Austin.”

Monte Montgomery provides a thick, expressive blues voice on the Allman Brothers’ “Soulshine” and trades licks with Green’s guitarist, Chris Skrobot, in some of the most riveting moments on Written II, with their dueling lines careening like pinballs.

Skrobot also introduced Green to Aaron Lee Tasjan, who’s something of a new discovery on the album. Tasjan’s “Streets Of Galilee” combines a seemingly random parade of images into an escapist story while Tasjan makes a wry vocal appearance, adding an ethereal presence in the mold of AAA talent Brett Dennen.

“Aaron is a super guy, an amazing talent, and he has a band in New York called The Madison Square Gardeners, so he’s obviously a very funny, very clever human being,” Green assesses. “He’s definitely the kind of writer I really enjoy listening to.”

“Galilee,” “Soulshine,” “Jesus On A Greyhound” and the imagery in “Austin” combine to form a spiritual undercurrent on the album akin to the message of Green’s biggest hit, “Wave On Wave.” It’s appropriate – Green spent much of the last two years searching his conscience as he battles the prism of limitations that were created by his own successes in Texas, and on a national stage.

And in a way, Songs We Wish We’d Written II is the first chapter in the next act of his career.

“There’s a man inside of me now that didn’t used to live here, whereas there was only a boy before,” he says. “The boy was so strong and had done so much, so I’m kind of seeing things in a new way. The last couple years have really been an eye opener, much more intense and richer.”

That’s a large statement – Green’s life and career have already been filled with rich experiences. He’s co-written songs with Willie Nelson, Brad Paisley, Jewel and Rob Thomas. Appeared on such national TV shows as Austin City Limits, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Late Show With David Letterman. Been hailed by Billboard, USA Today, Esquire, People and Country Weekly. Toured with the likes of Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban and the Dave Matthews Band. And become a concert force in his own right, regularly selling out venues from Los Angeles to New York, where he’s now sold out his last seven appearances.

All of that is impressive. But it’s also history. As much as he appreciates it, Green puts it in his place on his cover of “Even The Losers,” where he highlights a lyric that Petty obscured in the original: “It’s such a drag when you’re living in the past.”

Green may be recognized for those past achievements, but he doesn’t intend to be limited by them as he continues to progress creatively. And that progress will come by simply testing what it means to be Pat Green.

“I want to be me,” he says. “There are so many people who live with so many masters in their lives. I really just need one.”

Date Venue City State Note
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07/12/2011 - Pat Green Talks About The Business Of Music - Read More
04/06/2011 - Going Green: Country Singer Pat Green Headlines Polo on the Prairie  - Read More
02/16/2011 - Pat Green Finds Contentment  - Read More
12/09/2010 - It's a Green party at Billy Bob's Texas - Read More
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06/02/2003 - Pat Green Q&A - Read More
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Average Rating : 0              Total Reviews: 1214

Pat Green  02/02/2009            
ya'll make me laugh (M.. Dever's)
seriously. pat released another album and here we go again. same ole same. you people know that his music changed a long time ago yet you still cant seem to get over it. you people who bash his music seem to keep listening or buying his new albums in hopes that its a dancehall dreamer kind of album. that won't ever happen again nor should it. i'll admit i'm not a fan of his new stuff but respect how he has built his career. what would you do if you were in his shoes. say no to a label in nashville who tells you they can make you on a national level. not hardly. all you people who think your gonna get a lonestar beer drinkin, pickup truck drivin down a texas highway with a snuff in album, Move On Already. He did years ago! Kudos to Pat
Pat Green  02/01/2009            
Pat, "Dancehall Dreamer???"...This bullpoop your playin these days aint bad, but it aint you and it aint the music that got you where you are. Take a lesson from Randy Rogers,...don't forget where you came from.
Pat Green  01/31/2009            
DJ Devin
From Dancehall Dreamer in 1995 to What I'm For in 2009, Pat Green has never disappointed me. It's refreshing to listen to an artist who doesn't just keep putting out the same old record over and over again. Particular favorites of mine on this CD are "Footsteps of Our Fathers" "In The Middle of The Night" and "In This World". How sad to have a contingent of people that think it's "cool" or the "in thing" to bash Pat. I'll never understand their need to expend negative energy when they could be spreading some positive energy about the artists whose music does fuel their passions. Pat Green speaks to my heart and touches my soul. I wish him nothing but success and happiness. And I'll be listening to the songs he has brought us from EVERY album he's made!
Pat Green  01/28/2009            
I am a die hard fan of the old Pat f'n Green, but also accepted the new. Of the new albums, this one is pretty solid through and through. Although I hate when a recording artist remakes a classic for the sake of a major label release. Carry On should have been left as is.
Pat Green  01/28/2009            
Lisa Tomes
I attended his show last year at Whitewater Amphitheater on the Guadalupe river, and I must say this guy has "got It". An amazing performer, and fabulous stage presence. I do however prefer his older stuff. Ill be back, LT
Pat Green  01/28/2009            
Where do you begin after listening to an album like this? His style of music has completely changed. We lost Pat Green after the album Lucky Ones, that was the last Pat album i could listen to and enjoy all the way through. I am not disappointed by the songwriting but very let down by the sound of the album. I think that he will realize that this album was not accepted by the true fans and go back to the basics on the next album or at least I hope so.
Pat Green  01/28/2009            
Pat Green
Dear Me, I wish I had never started all this. I wish I had never chased the good ole American Dream. I wish i had never set myself in a position to make a difference for Texas and for that matter other Texans who wish to impact music as a whole for the better. I wish I had never read all the comments that people wrote about me her. I hope my kids never read anything on this website. I hope my mother never sees that people can be so silly as to think that by being insulting that they actually get their point across. Wow, i never thought i could be so unimpressed with the people whom, I for so long, sought acceptance from. "Don't pay attention to it all" is what i keep hearing me say but damn those with this voice seem to talk so loud. don't you understand why so many people like you loose faith in the dream.... loose faith in the hope that all is right with the world. that you can chase the dream as YOU see fit. I am sorry for you tonight... nighty night...
Pat Green  01/27/2009            
"i gave up on nashville a long time ago" apparently not. enjoy the money pat. stay out of texas
Pat Green  01/27/2009            
This album is absolutely amazing. The only thing that would have made it better would be more tracks. 10 songs don't do Pat justice. I love this album and can't stop listening to it!
Pat Green  01/27/2009            
I absolutely love this CD. Pat Green's true essence shines through on every song. I'm particularly fond of the title track "What I'm For" which for me speaks many truths. The upbeat "Lucky" is destined to be a big hit and is "point on" in reflecting today's American reality. There are no filler songs on this album. They are all awesome and showcase Pat's versatility as a super-talented singer/songwiter. I own every CD that Pat Green has released and I beleive this is his best work to date.
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