Alan Jackson’s new music video for “Where Have You Gone” opens on the hallowed stage of the Ryman Auditorium. Deemed the ‘Mother Church of Country Music’, the iconic venue serves as a symbolic setting for the music video of the title track for Jackson’s 21st studio album—released in May via EMI Nashville.
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Written by Jackson, “Where Have You Gone” serves as a lyrical centerpiece for what will be the artist’s first full length in six years. Following Angels and Alcohol (2015)—which contained some of his best work, including “The One You’re Waiting On” and “When God Paint”—Where Have You Gone is yet another chapter of his enduring and best-selling artistry.
Raised in rural Georgia, the Country Music Hall of Famer speaks candidly about unwelcomed change in the industry through this song. With characteristic grace, Jackson manages to do so without critique. Instead, he wields the lyrics as a love letter to the sweet country music he feels slipping through his clinging grip.
“The song kind of starts out like it’s a lost love,” Jackson says. “I love what I call ‘real country music,’ and I just see it fading away more than I ever have,” he explains. “I just wanted to say that.”
Music video director Peter Zavadil filmed the footage in black-and-white to conjure up nostalgia. His cinematic approach rendered a rightfully retrospective visualizer that bolsters the thematic undertones of the No.1 country album. Standing in the spotlight, the footage features the solo artist surrounded by fiddle, steel guitar, banjo, upright bass, acoustic guitar, simple drums—all instrumental to his classically country sound.
As Jackson performs, a reel of images rotates through a cast of bonafide legends who made history on that very same stage including Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Merle Haggard, George Jones, Hank Williams, and Tammy Wynette.
“This is Alan’s idea…capturing all of this incredible history that’s happened here,” Zavadil shares. “The goal was to make the Ryman as much of a character in this as Alan is the artist onstage,” he adds. “This is a magical place.”
Watch Alan Jackson’s new music video for “Where Have You Gone,” below.
Photo Credit: David McClister