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"Wine, Beer, Whiskey": How "cruise director" Phillip Sweet fueled Little Big Town's latest hit

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ABC“Wine, Beer, Whiskey,” the latest hit from Little Big Town, continues a tradition the band started with smashes like “Pontoon” and “Day Drinking.” 

“We’re a country band and we’ve done pretty well writing drinking songs,” Kimberly Schlapman says, “so we thought, ‘Let’s just do that again.'”

“Wine, Beer, Whiskey” came together on the road, as Kimberly, Karen FairchildJimi Westbrook, and Phillip Sweet had just composed the Nightfall track “Problem Child” with writers Topher Brown and Sean McConnell. After that, they needed a change of pace.

“Phillip, who we call our cruise director,” Kimberly explains, “is like, ‘Whoo! Let’s take a break from that. Hey, anybody want something to drink? We’ve got wine, we’ve got beer, we’ve got whiskey.'”

“And then… Topher or Sean started playing something on the guitar,” Kimberly continues, “and somebody in the room sang, ‘The wine, the beer, the whiskey.’ And then we were all like, ‘Oh, we have to write that!'”

Once they started, it didn’t take long.

“Everybody sat back down,” Kimberly recalls. “Several of us had a wine, a beer or a whiskey, and in like twenty-five minutes, we had written that song, which is the fastest we’ve ever written a song.”

Kimberly goes on to reveal that “Wine, Beer Whiskey” is actually her three-year-old daughter Dolly‘s favorite song, adding that it’s “not serious. It’s just for fun.” 

Her new children’s book, A Dolly for Christmas, tells the story of Dolly’s adoption, after her daughter Daisy desperately wanted a sibling, following Kimberly’s struggles with miscarriage and infertility.

You can also tune in to see Little Big Town on CMA Country Christmas, Monday, November 30 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.  

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDF0Y9KOloY&w=640&h=360]

By Stephen Hubbard
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