12/18/2015 by Phyllis Stark Billboard.com
He jokingly says one funky new track "could become the next Cialis theme song."
Vince Gill may be just 58 years old, but his age appears to be very much on his mind these days, as evidenced by the half dozen or so times he brought it up during Google Play Music's Dec. 10 listening party for his upcoming MCA Nashville album, Down to My Last Bad Habit.
It turns out, however, that Gill's introspection about his age has been a boon to his music. At the event, held at Nashville's The Standard restaurant, he noted that in writing the songs for the 12-track album, "The older I get, the more honest I get," and in performing them, he "felt the need to take the gloves off and let it fly." The end result is songs like "I Can't Do This," in which he delivers one of the best vocal performances of his career.
After noting that he had seen several friends die in recent years, Gill said, "It's taught me you better bring it, because you don't know when you're going to get another chance." Later, he joked, "I'm almost 59, and at some point I know I'm going to start to wheeze … I have the next three records I'm going to make in my head, and I'm going to start right away."
Gill also noted that Down to My Last Bad Habit, due Feb. 12, 2016, "only has one pure country song on it," but that track -- album closer "Sad One Comin' On" -- is stone-cold country. He wrote it following the 2013 death of legend George Jones. The rest of the album features plenty of collaborators from the world of country, including Little Big Town, Cam, Charlie Worsham, Ashley Monroe and Alison Krauss, as well as Gill's daughters Jenny and 14-year-old Corrina, plus Christian folk singer Ellie Holcomb and jazz trumpeter Chris Botti.
One decidedly non-country song is "Make You Feel Real Good," in which Gill said he was "channeling Howlin' Wolf." He observed, "I've never gotten to do anything this funky and this dirty," and joked that it "could become the next Cialis theme song."