Outlaw country artist Shooter Jennings released a new song from his upcoming album Over a Cocaine Rainbow. The song, titled “Genes Song” is a touching tribute to Gene Sizemore, an art teacher at the University School of Nashville. Jennings attended this school for his final 2 years of high school, and Gene made a considerable impact, and they forged a friendship that lasted all the way to Gene’s death. Jennings said this in a press release as a preface for the song and what about Gene inspired him, “He provided a foundation and mentorship to some degree that really helped me in hindsight, especially after losing my dad as a young man. He was a great man, a funny man, and a blues man. He loved music, art, and life and always brought a smile to my face.” Jennings went on to talk about how Gene used to draw pictures for those that he had a special relationship with. Gene gifted Jennings a drawing of a pistol and “Gene” written below it. It inspired Jennings to paint his own picture of Gene after he passed away.
The song starts off only with Jennings’s voice, before an explosion of southern rock sounding instrumentals and a pick up in the intensity of Jenning’s voice. He then returns to a more solemn and reflective tone with little instrumentals as he remarks on Gene’s profound impact on him. He also mentions specific moments in Gene’s life that have influenced him, such as the drawing of the gun that Gene gave him. The song is another tribute song on Over a Cocaine Rainbow, following the release of “Leave Those Memories Alone” in November. That song was a tribute to his friend Colonel Jon Hensley. Jennings also worked on more tribute related music when he and other country artists contributed to a box set for Neal Casal.
Photo Credit: Boston Lynn Schulz