Song Review: Riley Green – “There Was This Girl”

The short version: While it’s still unclear who Riley Green is, “There Was This Girl” at least makes me want to hear more from him. 

  • Writers: Riley Green, Erik Dylan
  • Rating: 7/10

The long version: I may be late to the punch in covering this, but that’s because there’s still the mystery of, “who is Riley Green?”

Really, the only information found on him is that he’s a Big Machine signee who released his debut single, “There Was This Girl” to radio last summer, and it’s just now approaching the top 10. It was enough to at least draw my curiosity.

“There Was This Girl,” at the very least, is the kind of song that makes me interested in hearing more from Green even if it’s not quite a spectacular song.

The most noticeable element of the track is the neo-traditional production akin to say, what Luke Combs is doing now. Neither fiddle or steel guitar is present here, but the electric guitar backing the song brings a nice lively feel to the track along with the drums and acoustic guitar, giving off a nice, fun groove. It’s a fairly standard mix, but it’s the way it’s used that really helps the track stand out from the current crowd.

Lyrically, the song starts off fairly unexciting, as the first verse is merely a rather ho-hum story of a guy trying to impress a girl. To be fair, the delivery is more playful than sleazy, but it still doesn’t evoke much excitement at first. The song gets points for continuity though, as the story evolves to tackle other reasons why the narrator does what he does for a woman’s love, including playing music for a living and eventually making her his wife. It’s not the most descriptive story, but it’s fun and light-hearted in the right way.

Green isn’t an incredibly distinctive singer, but he sells the song with the right amount of sincerity to add to its rollicking nature. He doesn’t take himself that seriously, and that might be the song’s greatest asset.

“There Was This Girl” is a track that’s bolstered by a strong execution rather than a solid foundation. Still, it’s a good first song to showcase to a country music audience, and there’s enough here to differentiate Green from the rest of the crowd right now. I’m hoping to hear more from him in 2019.

(Strong 6 to a light 7/10)

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