In this age of precision politics and right-on social statements, it is wonderfully refreshing to hear a song like Big Strong Man fluttering through the airwaves. Not that I am in any way against moving with the times politically, and it isn’t as if Courtney Cotter King isn’t merely reminding us of what we already know: that opposites attract, men need women and women need men, that masculinity can create the perfect backdrop for the projection of femininity (and of course visa versa.) It’s just that such songs seem, sadly out of vogue at the moment.
Written for her “tall, handsome husband,” Big Strong Man is a sweet and sassy, jazz-pop piece running on a bossa nova groove and dressed with sumptuous harmonies and understated instrumentation. It’s bluesy. It’s breezy. It’s brilliant.
Musically it feels timeless, it could find a home on the musical timeline anywhere in the last 60 years or so, but lyrically it is a wonderfully important part of the modern conversation too. The world has changed, we are all more aware of the needs and concerns of others but it doesn’t pay to forget that sometimes it is as simple as people needing each other and playing the traditional roles.
Big Strong Man is that reminder delivered as the coolest of sonic messages.