Don't take the title Desperate Man too seriously. Eric Church doesn't sound at the end of his rope on his sixth album; he sounds settled in his skin, assured that he doesn't have to try too hard. Which isn't to say he doesn't try on Desperate Man -- quite the opposite, actually. Church may not be working with a grand concept, the way he did on 2015's semi-autobiographical statement of purpose, Mr.
Three days after the mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival last year in Las Vegas, Eric Church debuted "Why Not Me." He wrote the song in tribute to Sonny Melton, one of the 58 people murdered that October night. Melton had gone to Route 91 to see Church, something the singer learned when he saw Sonny's widow, Heather, speaking on CNN. Eric Church wasn't the only country artist to write about Route 91--Maren Morris also released "Dear Hate"--but Church's news bulletin of a song speaks to his unique place in the modern country firmament.