Brittney Spencer's "Sober & Skinny" is sonically beautiful: light and airy in the way that forces listeners to pay full attention to its lyrics, but with swelling choruses that mask its lack of a true resolution. That metaphorical spoonful of sugar is what makes the medicine — the honesty — go down so easy.

Below, Spencer shares the story behind the song, which she co-wrote with Nelly Joy and Jason Reeves. She admits that she was surprised when they latched onto the idea she presented — "I thought it was such a quirky song," Spencer says — but they were all in after hearing the nearly-complete chorus.

So, it started on Zoom — actually, no, it started in my bed. Usually, at the top of the week, I try to get some song-starter ideas when I know I have some co-writing sessions coming up with other writers; I try to have some ideas so that we're not always just starting from scratch.

I sat on my bed and I started kind of singing the chorus for "Sober & Skinny," and it was pretty much all the way done, except one line was missing. I didn't know about where to put a certain line in the song, but the whole chorus was finished, and I put on my list.

When I got to Nelly Joy and Jason Reeves — who are incredible, incredible writers and people — when I got to them on Zoom, I said, "Hey, I've got a few ideas. Here's one, but if you don't like this one, we've got a few more that we can choose from, [or] I'm happy to hear your ideas." I played "Sober & Skinny" for them, and they were like, "Nope, [we don't need to hear any more ideas] — this is the one."

I was like, "Are you sure? We don't have to," because I thought it was such a quirky song ... probably too out-there, maybe, for some folks. But they were like, "Nope, this is the kind of song we want to write. Let's do it." And we wrote it then and there ...

It's not exactly autobiographical; it is inspired, I guess, by certain things I've experienced. I've been in relationships where my weight was kind of an issue, or it was mentioned, and so I just kind of pulled, I guess, used that as fuel to kind of help formulate my story.

The whole song, really — the idea of alcohol and the idea of weight, there's such huge spectrums, you know? Do you need to just stop drinking every day? Or drink one less beer? Or do you need to go to rehab? ... And with weight, it's like, is the doctor telling you if you don't lose some weight you're going to you put your health in jeopardy? Or do you just want to lose a few pounds after having a baby or because summer's here, or for whatever reason? Or is society telling you that you need to be smaller because you looked at a magazine ...

So, really, those two ideas are metaphors for: We all got something that we need to change ... I wanted to write a song that, in a loving and productive way, laid out this idea of, if you're willing to look at the things I need to change, you got to be willing to look at yourself, too ...

That line "You want me to shrink / Well, I think we should talk to one," that was the genius of Jason Reeves. When he said it, we were all thinking like, "You, I was just thinking something similar to that!" But he put it in words, and he did it so effortlessly and just so brilliantly ...

I don't necessarily always feel the need to have a song resolve ... because I think most people, we fight change. Sometimes we take years before we even decide to do the thing we started thinking about doing five years ago ... I don't think I'm trying to make a deep statement with the song, but I think it does, kind of. Like, I would be ignorant to think that it wouldn't kind of foster these sorts of conversations ...

I think country music affords us that opportunity to just say things, and I think it's important to make space for people to just say things.

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