The further into his career that Jon Pardi has progressed, the more it feels as though he’s settled into the latter 50% of his neo-traditionalist sound. He emerged onto the scene in the early 2010s, when classic country was still largely seen as old hat.
Pardi’s breakthrough 2014 single, ‘Up All Night’, was pop enough to fit into the existing paradigm, while introducing the world to Pardi’s penchant for a more retro, traditional-leaning style.
2016’s California Sunrise saw Pardi hitting his stride, and the project produced a string of prolific singles, such as ‘Heartache on the Dance Floor’, ‘Night Shift’ and ‘Dirt on My Boots’.
Pardi’s increasing prominence was recognised at the 2017 CMA Awards, as he won the coveted New Artist of the Year prize.
Pardi returned emphatically in 2020 with Heartache Medication - a classic country album-title for a classic country album. The project found Pardi leaning into the party-puns that so often get linked to his last name, with the Californian highlighting that he’s just as good at honouring the neon lights (‘Tied One On’) as he is at capturing the after-hours, tear-in-my-beer melancholy (‘Starlight’).
Arguably Pardi’s most assured record was 2022’s Mr. Saturday Night, which pivoted around a trademark piece of wordplay (“They don't know how much I missed her Saturday night”). Alongside his faux-bandmates of Midland, ‘Longneck Way to Go’ epitomised the exuberant, playful representation of heartbreak that Pardi has honed throughout his career. The swaggering single earned 2022 CMA Award nominations for Musical Event of the Year and Music Video of the Year.
Pardi has been confirmed as the Thursday Night Kick-Off Concert Headliner, and will be joined by special guest, Michael Ray.
Country Thunder Alberta takes place from 18th - 20th August in Fort Calgary, Alberta, Canada. All the updates from Holler.
Country Thunder Saskatchewan takes place from 13th - 16th July 2023 in Craven, Saskatchewan. All the updates from Holler.
Country Thunder Arizona takes place from 13th - 16th April in Florence, Arizona. All the updates from Holler.
At a time when Music Row was facing charges of commercialism, and uniformity was becoming more common, Jon Pardi emerged as a country music contrarian. His new album, Mr. Saturday Night, stays true to Pardi’s penchant for combining equals and opposites to create something wholly unique.