Story Behind the Song: Darryl Worley, ‘Sounds Like Life to Me’
Darryl Worley's "Sounds Like Life to Me" was inspired by a real-life moment that happened to Worley years before he wrote the tune with Phil O'Donnell and Wynn Varble -- almost to a T. Worley released the song in January of 2009, as the second single from his Sounds Like Life album, and it peaked just outside the Top 10 (No. 11) on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Below, Worley tells The Boot about the event that inspired the track.
A close friend's wife had called and told me what was going on with her husband, and I went to him -- I went to this old, rickety bar. He was there, and I was trying to talk him out of that place, because he had been sober for seven or eight years; I just hated to see him relapse like that.
He went down this laundry list of negative things, and that's just what came out of my mouth: I said, "Well, it sounds like life to me. We're all in the same boat ..."
What I told him was, "You've been in here for over an hour. Let's me and you go take a walk, and if we don't see somebody in 15 minutes that's in worse shape than either one of us, I'll pay [your bills] for a month." The message was, it doesn't matter how far down you get, if you open your eyes up and take your blinders off, you'll see somebody in a matter of minutes that will make you go, "Okay, I get it now."
Long story short, eventually I was able to coax him out of there and got him back home. It was a happy ending.
For years, I carried that song around with me, and I pitched it to several different writers. Nobody seemed to get it. So Phil O'Donnell and Wynn Varble were coming over to my house one day, and I had been working on it and had a little bit of a melody and lyrics. I said, "Look, you've passed on this idea two or three different times now, [but] I'm writing this song. We don't have to write it today; we can write something else. But I'm going to write this song, so if nobody wants to write it with me, I'm going to write it by myself, and I'm going to get all the money!"
Something about that must have spurred their interest, because a few hours later, we had it finished, and we were off at a Mexican restaurant eating lunch!
This story was originally written by Pat Gallagher, and revised by Angela Stefano.
Darryl Worley + More Country Stars Who Stand Up to Cancer