An aspiring singer-songwriter with a penchant for classic country sounds, Clinton Wilkie was born and raised in North Dakota, but has spent the last five years calling Crookston, Minnesota home. After picking up the guitar for the first time four years ago to honour the memory of his later grandfather, Clinton has never put it down, refining his skills and forging his own guitar-driven sound that rolls with a rustic, acoustic charm.
Written around two years ago, ‘Worth a Shot’ is Clinton’s debut single, and it’s an impressive introduction to his contemporary take on the traditional genre. Opening with a stream of electric guitar, ‘Worth a Shot’ has a distinct pop feel, gaining momentum through a subtle, nuanced melody that lies beneath Clinton’s vocals. The drums are paced brilliantly, offering a glimpse at the energy that’s hidden behind every chorus, and every aspect of the song builds into a colourful country melody that lingers well past the song’s three-and-a-half-minute run time.
Lyrically, Clinton plays with classic Americana themes, mixing party anthemics with romantic notions, leading to some clever overlapping wordplay. While it might be a strain to rhyme ‘bourbon’ with ‘turning’ and ‘brandy’ with ‘dancing’, you have to love the final hook of “I know it ain’t the whisky, but it’s worth a shot”, and Clinton’s clean, evocative vocals really makes it all shine with a seamless country charm.
While new to the scene, it’s clear that Clinton has a lifetime of music in his history, and ‘Worth a Shot’ is a remarkable debut that far surpasses his short time writing music. With the promise of more to come and a lifetime to continue refining his sound, Clinton Wilkie is definitely an artist to watch.
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