All the songs in 'Shucked' on Broadway
The country score for this corny comedy is by Shane McAnally and Brandy Clark, the songwriters behind Grammy-winning music for Kacey Musgraves, Kelly Clarkson, and more.
The countrified musical comedy Shucked runs on cornball jokes, and they pop up one after another in this delightfully silly show set in – where else? – Cob County. Residents of the rural town discover that their vital cornfields are dying, so one of them heads to the big city for help. Cue con games, romances, and a bumper crop of puns so bad they’re good.
Tootsie Tony winner Robert Horn gets credit for the LOL script. And as noted in New York Theatre Guide’s four-star Shucked review, “the show is buoyed along on easy-to-like songs” by Brandy Clark and Shane McAnally.
The Grammy-winning country music pros are known for writing catchy yet emotional hits for Kacey Musgraves, Kelly Clarkson, Sheryl Crow, Reba McEntire, and many more. The duo has packed their first Broadway score with lots of fun and deeper feels.
Learn more about all the songs in Shucked below, and then get tickets to hear them live. They’re sure to be music to your ears.
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This article contains mild spoilers for Shucked.
Led by a pair of irresistibly jokey Storytellers (Ashley D. Kelley and Grey Henson), the lively opening number immediately establishes the cheeky tone of the story in which corn looms extra large. “Sweet corn, street corn, it’s really hard to beat corn,” they belt. “Hands or feet, no wrong way to eat corn.” Prepare yourself. This song is the first of many courses of corn talk in Shucked.
When the corn crops go belly up, bride-to-be Maizy (Caroline Innerbichler) argues a solution lies beyond their closed-off community. In this pretty and poetic tune, she sings, “Why build walls around our home, around our hearts? We just stay small … I’m looking for a window, not a wall.”
Despite the naysayers, including her beloved fiancé Beau (Andrew Durand), Maizy defiantly sets out for help in this chipper song. “Do I send a postcard or a pigeon back to Grandpa?” she wonders as she makes her way through Nashville and Atlanta. Finally, she gets to where she’s going. Which is? No spoilers; it’s a goofy surprise.
Maizy’s daring journey brings her face-to-face with Gordy (John Behlmann), who’s from a family of grifters but isn’t any good at it himself. He laments he’s “a fly in the ointment. In a long line of hustlers, I'm a big disappointment.” Even so, Maizy takes a shine to Gordy because she believes he can help her town.
“Woman of the World”
With new confidence in her step and a subtle corn-fed twang in her voice, Maizy returns home. In this self-affirming ditty, she revels in having the niblets to leave the security of Cob County: “I’ve always been in overalls and curls, but this little girl is a woman of the world.” She’s had an awakening — but it’s going to have consequences.
After a lifetime of loving Maizy, Beau considers what his life would be like without her. Clark and McAnally mine that notion for a standout country Western-flavored tune with a catchy melody, plainspoken lyrics, and a message about resilience.
Empowerment ballad, anyone? That’s what Maizy’s cousin and BFF Lulu (Alex Newell) serves in this bold-as-brass crowd rouser that isn’t shy about getting racy. “Don’t need a man for flatteries,” belts the liberated Lulu. “I got a corn cob and some batteries.”
Yes, that’s actually the title. And that’s the reaction Beau’s brother Peanut (Kevin Cahoon), Beau, and Lulu have when they overhear bits of Gordy’s phone conversation concerning the precious stones in Cob County. (Naturally, they’re eavesdropping from the cornstalks.)
Maizy reckons with the men in her life – Beau and Gordy. “Maybe love ain’t what I thought, but maybe love is what I got,” she sings. (We won’t spoil who she’s talking about.) Amid the flurry of nonstop jokes, this tender ballad takes the opportunity to get a little – just a little – contemplative and touch the heart. And it does.
Act 1 concludes with a return to the opening number, as Gordy appears to have solved the blighted corn catastrophe and presents Maizy with a question that takes their relationship to the next level.
“We Love Jesus”
Picking up right where Act 1 ended, Act 2 opens with a boisterous ensemble number. This isn’t your average church hymn as the title suggests, though. “Yeah, we love Jesus — but we drink a little,” the townspeople cheer, dancing about with ample bottles of corn whiskey. The number succinctly provides insight into the Cob County way of life.
In this gentle heartstring-tugging song, Beau puts on a brave front as he considers his life without Maizy. He reminds himself there’s no use in “living in the past. I always knew that she’d move on,” he sings. “But didn’t know she’d move so fast.”
Sounds like a wedding’s afoot, no? There is — for Maizy and Gordy, who struggle to come up with words to say to each other at the ceremony. After all, they’re basically strangers. This tuneful and neatly constructed song is shared among three couples.
“Why don’t you pretend I’m him,” Beau sings to Maizy as he helps her craft wedding vows. “Why don’t you pretend I’m her,” Lulu sings to Gordy in the same situation. Meanwhile, the Storytellers chime in with goofy commentary.
“I have to call you family, but I get to call you friend.” Maizy and Lulu reconcile in this deceptively deep song that makes audiences rethink the saying about blood being thicker than water.
“Best Man Wins”
Beau realizes that he can’t lose Maizy to Gordy — not without a fight — in this rowdy, high-energy number with Peanut and the ensemble. Listen up for a lyrical refrain of “hee haw,” which nods to the vintage TV variety show that inspired an early version of Shucked.
At this point, the Storytellers explain how the “farm to fable” takes an exciting turn. The ensemble sings bits of songs we’ve heard in instant-replay fashion: “Corn,” “Travelin’ Song,” “Woman of the World,” and “Friends.”
“Maybe Love (Reprise)”
In the end, Shucked isn’t just about corn; it’s about love, too. The full-company reprise wraps things up on a sweet note. A little corn syrupy, but it satisfies the appetite for a golden musical comedy ending.
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