In “Look It Up,” the sassy debut single from Ashton Shepherd’s sophomore album on MCA Nashville, the country traditionalist provides her cheating man a by-the-book education in what’s unacceptable in a relationship.
The song will be available for purchase at all digital partners on Tuesday, January 4. According to Mediabase, “Look It Up” is the second most-added song this week at country radio and the song debuted at #55 today on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart.
“’Look It Up’ is a song about somebody who is officially done with something to the point that they are really over it,” Ashton says. “It’s almost like they aren’t that mad anymore, just ready to be through with it, just done. ‘Done’ is a good word.
“People are having so much fun with it,” she says. “They are embracing the thought of somebody being in that place in their life that the song is describing, which I think is wonderful. Everybody’s reactions have been very positive, and they’re laughing and clapping their hands and just tickled over it. I’m just left smiling after singing it because people are grabbing a hold of it.
“This song is a real-people song. People go through it every day and people want to be over it. Even the people that aren’t over it and are still clinging to something, this is the song they need to hear to lighten their minds.”
The lyrics of the song co-written by Angaleena Presley and Robert Ellis Orrall include, “The word is ‘faithful’ – look it up/ It don’t mean sneakin’ around behind my back like you ain’t getting’ enough/How ‘bout ‘forever’ – just look it up/ It means through thick and thin, and pitchin’ in, even when the times get tough.”
Country Weekly says, “‘Look It Up’ is a honkytonk slice of revenge against a cheatin’, drinkin’, lyin’ lover.’” The publication says, “With a scathing vocal, the small town Alabaman gives her misbehaving man a few choice words to ‘look up,’ such as ‘faithful,’ ‘forever,’ and ‘sober,’” since he obviously has no clue of their meanings. The cheater’s other woman doesn’t get a free pass, either. Ashton labels her as ‘easy’ or more precisely, ‘that piece of trash riding round in your pickup truck.’”
“Look It Up” was the first song she recorded in Nashville for her second album, due out late spring. “Everybody in the studio just erupted when they first heard ‘Look it Up,’” she says. “The band members especially were like, ‘What a great song!’ It turned out to be one of the most fun songs I’ve ever recorded. I’m really excited about it. It’s been very fun and surprising all along to watch people’s reaction to it.”
In January, she will return to the studio to finish recording her much-anticipated sophomore album, a follow-up to her critically acclaimed debut project, Sounds So Good. Entertainment Weekly said Sounds So Good “is the best mainstream country debut since Taylor Swift’s,” while The Wall Street Journal called her “a potential Loretta Lynn for a new generation.” It was The Washington Post’s pick for 2008 album of the year of all genres.
Her sophomore album captures the next step in her musical evolution.
“This is ‘Ashton Shepherd collides twicefold with Nashville,’” she says. “On the first record, one of the critics said, ‘What a great way to marry her voice into Nashville production.’ This is the same kind of thing on the second record, but this record is the perfect next step.
“The first record was fun and I was proud to be a writer on so many of those songs,” she says. “But all of a sudden, I am looking at this record and going, ‘Wow! Look at the awesome songwriters on here —Bobby Pinson, Troy Jones, Rhett Akins, Dallas Davidson, Robert Ellis Orrall. I’ve still got three 100-percent songs on there. It’s a special mixture.
“It’s a dream come true for me. It’s like watching a different kind of child grow. You’re watching it grow and you don’t know exactly what it’s going to do, but you have these great feelings about it and you can see it starting to move. It feels really positive.”