BRELAND is reminiscing about a "restless summer" of love as "bittersweet" as "Strawberry Wine."
The singer/songwriter, 26, joined in the Spotify Singles campaign that debuted Thursday which features artists born in the '90s covering their favorite popular singles from the decade.
BRELAND opted for Deana Carter's 1996 hit "Strawberry Wine" and recorded his chosen ode to country at Sound Stage Studios in Nashville, Tennessee.
In a video alongside Parker McCollum and Tenille Arts — who also recorded their favorite nostalgic songs — BRELAND explained that out of all the options to choose from, he picked "Strawberry Wine" because "it was just one of those songs that transcended time."
"I have been singing that song kind of casually over the past few years and was like, 'Would it be weird for me to try to do a cover?'" the singer/songwriter reflected in an interview with Rolling Stone Tuesday.
The song pays homage to Carter's feelings of summer love and the heartache she faced after her love left by September and "drifted away like the leaves in the fall."
BRELAND further explained in his interview with Rolling Stone that he liked the idea of putting his own spin on a song that has typically been covered by other women. "I've heard a lot of women do it beautiful, but I felt like I could bring a different energy to it," the "High Horse" singer said.
Keeping true to the song, he covered it from the female perspective.
"It really beautifully describes an experience that we all have: first love," Breland told Rolling Stone. "There's a universal truth in the song. I can remember being 17 and feeling like I found the one. And as it turned out, it wasn't."
Jason Kempin/Getty; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic BRELAND; Deana Carter
The 26-year-old did, however, reimagine the song with an R&B twist.
In his chat with McCollum, 29, and Arts, 27, BRELAND explained his fusion of genres was influenced by his parents who "are both gospel singers."
"We literally only listened to gospel in the house," he said. "My introduction to '90s Country was really like high school and really college. For '90s country there was just a playfulness about it, but also just the way they were telling some of those stories I was attracted to it as a songwriter."
He continued, "A lot of my music brings hip hop and R&B and gospel influences into country and kind of fuses those things together as a cross-country cocktail."
"What I've been doing lately is sampling '90s country, add some modern instrumentals and put a new perspective on it. It's just cool for me to see how history repeats itself and then also, how things just directly flow," the storyteller said.
BRELAND also looked to the future of country music.
"Spotify singles in 2050… they're gonna be like, 'Oh my gosh, the '20s were crazy!'" he said.
Spotify's decision to have BRELAND along with Arts who recorded "Wide Open Spaces" by The Chicks and McCollum who did his spin on George Strait's "Carry Your Love with Me" reimagine the '90s singles came after the streaming service noticed a spike in listeners tuning in to country playlists from that era.
Jason Kempin/Getty BRELAND
"The growth has been completely organic. The consumption has been naturally driven by our listeners and their own listening habits, and as we started digging into the trend, we started noticing that a significant amount of the growth was coming from Millennials and Gen Z," Brittany Schaffer, Head of Artist & Label Partnerships, told Rolling Stone.
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Schaffer continued, "And when you think about Millennials, it's not necessarily surprising because that was the soundtrack of our upbringing. With Gen Z, it's interesting because a large portion of their generation weren't even alive when these songs were released."
"One of the things that we've started to learn about Gen Z is that they are conditioned to be exactly who they are," she said. "That positions with country music really well, because country has always been about authenticity."
Readers can listen to Spotify's '90s Country playlist here.