Dierks Bentley goes bluegrass with 'Up On the Ridge': Stream new song 'Draw Me a Map' exclusively here

Dierks-BentleyImage Credit: Danny ClinchCountry star Dierks Bentley‘s new album Up On the Ridge drops June 8, and the Music Mix is counting down by streaming three exclusive tracks from the all-acoustic “bluegrass-influenced” project — a definite departure for the dude who just last year wanted us all to get a little “Sideways.” For inspiration, Bentley says he drew on his younger days at Nashville’s famed Station Inn, and wanted to reclaim some “musical turf” he thought he’d lost. “I’ve always made the records that I wanted to make, but the trappings of success come with playing it safe,” he admits. “I just needed to get off the grid and do something different. In the end, I think people will go for it, and if they don’t, I think they’ll respect the fact that I tried.”

In lieu of more singles with long, road or leaving in the title (we kid because we love), Bentley brought in collaborators like Miranda Lambert, Jamey Johnson, Vince Gill, Kris Kristofferson, and the Punch Brothers. He covered Dylan, Buddy and Julie Miller, even U2’s “Pride (In the Name of Love)” — with Del McCoury on high harmonies. The guests pitched in out of friendship, not ambition, says Bentley. “I called their cell phones directly,” he says, then pauses. “Kristofferson I did not call,” he laughs.

“Draw Me a Map” — co-written by Bentley and featuring a guest vocal from bluegrass queen Alison Krauss herself — is track one of our three exclusives; the next two will run tomorrow and Monday, before Tuesday’s release of Up On the Ridge. Give a listen, and then give us your thoughts in the comments. And don’t forget to come back tomorrow for another new tune!

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)

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Comments (16 total) Add your comment
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  • S

    Thanks EW for still following Mr. Dierks Bentley. I find he never gets as much recognition as most of the other male country artists around, and he is definitely my favorite.

  • couchgrouch

    great lyric, vocal and musicianship.

  • Dunja

    I can’t wait for June 8th!! Everything I’ve heard so far is amazing!

  • Sandra

    Just beautiful! I love it!

  • Shauna

    This song is really pretty. I cannot wait to hear the whole cd when i get it.

  • Brenda

    Saw him do the title track on the Jay Leno show and absolutely loved it. Can’t wait for the CD to drop on June 8th.

  • Alacia

    AMAZING!!! I have heard the whole cd it better win a grammy for sure

  • Carrie

    One of my favorite tracks! This album is fabulous — country the way country should be. Looking forward to your review of the album, Whitney!

  • RustyT

    I’m a longtime fan. This song is good, though it doesn’t grab me and make my say “Wow!” the way I did the first time I heard Dolly’s amazing bluegrass album (“The Grass Is Blue”). I’ll keep an open mind, though. I admit, I still like the early wild-boy Dierks from the self-titled album and “Lot of Leavin’ Left to Do” era before he got married and more settled. His cool edge hasn’t been there to nearly the same extent since then.

  • Lindsay

    I love it. This is a Beautiful song!

  • Robin

    I have been following Dierks since “What Was I Thinking?” He gets better with every album and every performance. I had the privelege of seeing Dierks in concert 4 times last year and he is AWESOME!!!

  • CA Dreamin

    Thanks for the heads up Whitney. Based on this listen, ‘Up On the Ridge’ is a release I’ll be adding to my collection.

  • martha

    I love this song, can not wait until Tuesday a.m. gets here!!!! Dierks you have such a pure voice, it must be true, you have a voice of an angel!!!

  • Elizabeth

    I can relate to this song :(

  • marjoriecole

    i think diersalso sings good.a is more talented,becausehe can sing anything, love, funny, country,sexy,happy.etc.also sings good.

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