Austin Webb's soulful new ballad 'Slip on By' will catch you off guard if you let it, and that's not such a bad idea. Webb sings a familiar, but not overdone, lesson about appreciating every moment we have on this Earth. 

His story doesn't quite have the impact of similar stories by Kenny Chesney or Brad Paisley, but that may be because those two were trusted storytellers when they released their hits. Webb's status as a country newcomer doesn't take away from his performance, but it may slow down the mass impact. Give him time. Appreciate his stirring choruses.

"Hear the sound of my little boy saying / Daddy can you come play with me / But I was too busy," Webb sings during the second chorus. "Then one day my baby grew up and went to war / I never thought he’d be gone in the blink of an eye / Don’t let it slip on, don’t let it slip on, don't let it slip on by."

The song is better than the singer. That's not really a slight because it's one heck of a lyric, although his style isn't as warm as we would like. He's singing of an old man who gives advice to a younger man with a way about him that seems familiar. There is room for this type of song. It sets us back on our heels, forcing us to take stock of what we truly value, if only for a few minutes.

"It ain’t easy always looking back / But it seems these days that it’s all I have / And what hurts me the most is knowing what could have been," Webb sings leading into that second chorus. Earlier verses that set the stage for what's to come are effective, but these moments are what one will truly remember.

Give credit to Webb for taking on a big, emotional story. He plays it smart, never trying to to do too much to jazz up a song that needs no jazzing. That's not an easy thing for a young artist to do. His patience could pay off in a big way.

4.5 Stars


Listen to Austin Webb, 'Slip on By'

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