This is not Tim McGraw’s next single. In fact, this song is going on eight years old. That’s when Tim recorded it for his Live Like You Were Dying album. Tim’s biggest fans will recognize this song, but for others like me the song will be new.
I first heard about this song when someone suggested it for the Saddest Country Songs of All Time.
The second time I heard about this song was while reading an interview Tim did with American Songwriter. There is a part in the interview where Tim talks about the songs that should define his career. He mentions this song and what he had to say really surprised me:
Still to this day, my favorite songs on my albums are not necessarily singles … I sort of cringe when I think that people judge my career according just to what they’ve heard on the radio. To me, the body of work is so much better or deeper than the singles are. If I had to pick a song for someone to judge my career, it would be “Kill Myself” or “I Think Something’s Broken” – one of those kinds of songs.
I found that really interesting. Certainly the singles are important to Tim. For his fans, that’s about all they know about Tim except for his biggest fans that know all the songs from all the albums.
But to hear that a song like Kill Myself was something that should be held in the highest regard for a career like Tim McGraw’s? That made me curious. I had to look into it.
Kill Myself – Tim McGraw
I wanted to be careful with Kill Myself. It’s easy to jump to conclusions based on the title. I wanted to listen to it a few times before even trying to understand what the track was about. After all, Tim was saying that this was an important song for him and with a title like this that statement would be alarming on the surface.
Tim has made no small issue of the fact that he was a heavy drinker during his younger days. He said he was a drinker in college. In the interview with American Songwriter he makes note of the fact that in the early days in Nashville he was basically drunk all the time.
If you have went through this period in life or know someone that has you understand how this can impact not just a single person, but everyone they know and love.
It was a few years ago, probably around the time this song was recorded, when Tim and his wife had what was probably a difficult discussion about his drinking. The decision, also made public, was for Tim to finally move past that part of his life. He quit. He stopped drinking and made a change to his life. He wanted to be there for his family; his wife and daughters. He wanted to be there for his friends and co-workers.
It was a big change.
Knowing this story, it makes sense how a song like Kill Myself could be so important to Tim. It could simply be about what the title of the song is but to put it in a different perspective it is more likely about someone that kills the person they were and starts living life as a better person.
That’s what I think Kill Myself is about. And I have to applaud Tim for recording it. He has never shied away from controversy in his career. He looks for good songs with good melodies and hooks and makes them work.
This is a great song that obviously means a lot to Tim and hopefully has meant something to others out there.
Jason Murphy says
It’s a great feeling to finally know that my belief of this song’s meaning is what I believed it to be. I can relate because it’s something I’m going through now. Not with alcohol or even drugs, but with being a person people around me don’t like. I’ve been a fan of Tim’s since before “Not A Moment Too Soon” was released. “Better Than I Used to Be” is another of his songs that holds special meaning for me. Thank you Tim.