Hear John Anderson’s New Single, ‘Magic Mama’
More than 30 years after first making waves in country music, John Anderson is back in a big way. The singer released Goldmine, his 23rd studio album, in May of last year, to a great deal of critical acclaim, and now, he has released “Magic Mama,” a Merle Haggard-penned song, as the record’s second single.
“Magic Mama” is an upbeat, Western swing-tinged romp full of vivid imagery about an encounter with an armed and dangerous woman, Magic Mama, in Miami. According to Anderson, Haggard wrote the song with Anderson’s distinctive voice in mind.
“A couple of years ago, I got a call from Merle saying that he had written a song with me in mind. I saw him about six months later and asked if he finished it,” Anderson recalls in release. “He pulled out a little piece of paper from his back pocket that had the lyrics on it, and he got a guitar and played it for me. That’s probably one of the greatest moments of my career, sitting there listening to Merle play that song that he had written for me.”
The subject of “Magic Mama” is mysterious, but Anderson never asked Haggard about the origin of the story. Considering the song’s lyrics — “Met a brand-new lady running ‘long the beach / What I didn’t know was, she was willing to teach / Well, she took me home on our first date / I said, ‘I’m a slow man;’ she said, ‘I’m willing to wait’ / But she got in a hurry when I started to leave / Pulled a little .38 right out of her sleeve” — it might very well be a touchy subject.
Goldmine is John Anderson’s first album in nine years, a response to demand from his dedicated fans.
“We did have a record, actually a couple records, but they never got released, so therefore, our fans have been wondering, ‘Are you all going to make any more music?’ or ‘Do you still sing?’” Anderson told The Boot last May. “This particular record, after those kind of dismal attempts of our last few, I wanted to try and be sure we could at least be set up where the fans would know about it when we did make a record.”
Fans can listen to “Magic Mama” below and try to figure out exactly who Haggard might have encountered in Miami to inspire such a song.
Listen to John Anderson, “Magic Mama”: