More than a decade ago, Delaware native Jimmie Allen moved to Music City with only $21 to his name after dropping out of the University of Delaware. Working odd jobs, he focused on songwriting and performing at any writers round or show he could book. Now, the 33-year-old finds his debut single “ Best Shot” occupying the top slot as the most-played song on Country radio for a second consecutive week after a 41-week climb on the charts.
In a candid interview, Allen told his hometown paper, the Delaware News Journal, “When you work so hard for something and finally start to see it pay off, it’s very rewarding. You think of all those sleepless nights, the days I didn’t eat and missing birthdays and weddings. You think about the relationships that didn’t work out. But the dream I was chasing was definitely worth it.”
Written by Allen, Josh London and JP Williams, “Best Shot” is the first single from Allen’s Stoney Creek Records / BBR Music Group debut album Mercury Lane, a project The New York Timesopines is “optimistic, rock-inflected country.” His 15-track debut is named for the dead-end street in Milton where he grew up. With a population of 2,914, Allen’s father first introduced him to Country music in the sleepy town where corn and soybean fields line the two-lane road.
“Mercury Lane is where my journey began. All of the fundamental life lessons that shaped my values, I was taught on that street—its where I learned about love, life, how to believe in myself, the concept of never giving up, following your dreams and being a good person. I credit my time spent there with my family for shaping me into the man I am today,” Allen reflects.
“Looking back on my first 10 years in Nashville, there are definitely days where it would have been easier to quit than to hear ‘no’ for the seventh day in a row,” Allen adds. “But that’s what ‘Best Shot’ is all about: my promise not to give up. I’m so incredibly humbled by the amount of support this song has received. Like the lyrics say, ‘ I’ve struck out, I’ve been knocked down more times than I can count… But that don’t matter now … Because of you, I’m not the man I was before you, I’m not saying that I’m perfect, you know I’m not, But I’ll love you with everything I’ve got… I’ll give you my best shot.’”