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Amanda Shires Offers New Song ‘The Problem’ for International Safe Abortion Day

Track features Jason Isbell, benefits reproductive justice organization

Amanda Shires’ new song “The Problem,” featuring Jason Isbell, is out today (Sept. 28), to coincide with International Safe Abortion Day. All proceeds from “The Problem” benefit The Yellowhammer Fund, an abortion fund and reproductive justice organization based in Alabama.

In a statement, Shire says, “This song is about making tough decisions and not having to go it alone.”

Isbell, Shires’ husband and a former Drive-By Truckers member, adds in a statement, “To me, ‘The Problem’ is a song about supporting someone you love through a difficult time It’s about helping without exerting your own will. I support a woman’s right to choose, and I know these choices are never easy.”

The lyrics feature a “conversation” between Shires and Isbell that includes:

[Shires] I’m scared to even say the truth. This has been the hardest year

[Isbell] Is it even legal here?

[Shires]
I’m trying not to think of names
And will you look at me the same?
Do you need the reasons why?
Is a chrysalis a butterfly?”

Check out the song below.

“The Problem’ tells a story that’s rarely heard or discussed — especially by southerners — and we are grateful that Amanda is shining a light to keep the conversation going,” says Laurie Bertram Roberts, executive director of Yellowhammer Fund, in a statement. “With the 2020 election looming, we want to continue destigmatizing abortion and we hope that normalizing conversations around it will help folks feel more comfortable seeking the essential health care they need.”

With the Sept. 18 death of Supreme Court Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg and subsequent nomination of conservative federal appellate Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the bench, women’s abortion rights may be threatened. More information on National Safe Abortion Day is here.

Shires and Isbell have made other music together recently, dropping a cover of Van Morrison’s classic “Into the Mystic,” while mocking the Irish singer’s controversial Covid and anti-lockdown stance.