In Defense of... Gavin DeGraw "Not Over You"

I've never been into bluesy piano rock played by guys wearing fedoras over casual clothing. It just seems like something made specifically for impressionable young women or those married couples that spoon at concerts.

I'm neither of those, so that's probably why I never heard of Gavin DeGraw until now. Here's a fun fact about DeGraw: He's not the British country-rock singer I imagined upon hearing his name. 

Instead, the New Yorker just might be the best thing to come out of the impossibly-nice-guy spoon-rock in ages.

To lay on the "British" thing, the beginning piano chord of the single "Not Over You" sounds like something Coldplay would have been able to phone in if they wrote it in 2008. The rest of the track follows up with some pretty sturdy percussion and Gavin's distinct voice. 

Apparently DeGraw wrote his latest single with OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder. When the guys met to set down the track, something happened: Their hats came to life, flew off of their heads and started spooning on the couch. True story. 

Funny thing: The head kept under Tedder's hat is actually one of the keenest minds in pop music lyricism. He's written songs such as Beyoncé's "Halo," Leona Lewis' "Bleeding Love and the not-so-bad tracks on Chris Cornell's otherwise Scream album. And Tedder's lyrical flourish appears in lines on this song such as this one: "Hope there's a conversation / where we both admit we had it good / but until then it's alienation." 

Credit it where it's due: This track sounds a bit more mature than most other breakup tracks, which usually lay on the acrimony and blame. 

And, in the process, "Not Over You" makes Gavin DeGraw sound like everything Bruno Mars wants to be. 

Hats off to these gents.

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Shahryar Rizvi
Contact: Shahryar Rizvi