Ahead of his debut Riser House/Columbia Nashville album Telling All My Secrets due everywhere on December 14, singer/songwriter Mitchell Tenpenny shares a new song, “Walk Like Him,” written by Tenpenny, Justin Ebach and Steven Dale Jones.
It took a long time for Tenpenny, who lost his father, Mitch, four years ago to a battle with cancer, to muster the words for “Walk Like Him.” It wasn’t until three years after his father passed that inspiration struck late one night driving his band’s van while everyone slept.
“It just hit me and I broke down that night. There was just something about the loneliness and everything, realizing that my dad’s not there,” the Nashville native revealed exclusively to People.
Everyone in his family had always said Tenpenny walked like his dad. He took that idea beyond the physical to what it would mean to walk like his late father both mentally and spiritually, something the soulful singer continues to do every day.
The lyrics describe traits Tenpenny inherited from his father:
Mama says I walk like him
Feet at 10 and 2
My uncle says I talk like him
I get my point across the room
And if he were here today
He’d just laugh out loud they say
‘Cause he knew that his boy
Was just like him
So I cuss a little bit when the game’s on TV
Got Eagles in the truck in the truck on repeat
Know how to use a hammer and nail
Don’t whine about my problems
He was better at putting that bottle down
But I spend every day trying to make him proud
If I said that I did I’d be lying
But I’m trying to walk like him
Tenpenny found healing through writing the song and hopes listeners find comfort as well, sharing with People, “…hopefully [it will] help somebody else, to connect and say, ‘We’re all in this together.’”
Beyond his music, Tenpenny has found other avenues to help those facing the stress of a cancer journey. Earlier this year, he founded “The 10Penny Fund” to provide inspiration and support to cancer patients beyond traditional medical treatment. It was formed and designed to motivate patients, encourage healing and build a community of support like Tenpenny’s family found following his father’s diagnosis. More information on the fund can be found by visiting: www.cfmt.org/giving-and-investing/become-a-donor/give-to-a-fund/the-10penny-fund/.
Tenpenny’s own story is just beginning, with a new record deal and label catapulting his debut RIAA GOLD certified single, “Drunk Me,” which is Top 10-and-climbing at Country radio and has already amassed more than 95 million on-demand audio and video streams.
For more information, visit mitchell10penny.com.