There are plenty of ways you can tell the story of a person’s life; from studying the broad strokes of their life’s narrative through historical events to gaining personal insight from friends about the kind of person they appeared to be to those around them. The facets of a person’s life contain multitudes and layers most will never experience outside of their own, but one surefire way to know a person is by an often overlooked detail: their hands. Country artist Dianña’s latest single “Hands” focuses on this very thing, and it’s a smart, memorable new release from the singer-songwriter that functions as a knockout country hit.
“Hands” is notably poignant and sincere, which might feel bizarre for a song that sounds at home on the top of the charts. Dianña’s approach to songwriting toes a fine line of sincerity and bravado, but the result is spectacular every time. For those unaware, Dianña made quite a name for herself in 2020 with the tongue-in-cheek “Calm Down Karen,” which went on to amass over 50 million plays on TikTok alone — “Hands” is a serious effort from Dianña, but the duality between it and “Calm Down Karen” should be a significant showcase of her talents as a songwriter and performer. As far as singles go, “Hands” feels sincere in a lot of ways most contemporary country tracks do not; there’s a narrative told across the song’s lyrics beginning with a single mother from Kentucky making the most of her situation by “buil[ding] a shed into a home,” but it evolves to reach its way to every walk of life. Dianña gives the song room to breathe as she brings an emotional crescendo and the country track finishes with an optimistic sigh of relief.
Dianña is a powerful force in the country music industry, with her independent work trekking its way across genre boundaries some would be afraid to tackle artistically; thankfully, due to Dianña’s varied musical background, there’s a sense of earned confidence that comes across in her music and it’s something audiences will undoubtedly catch on to. There’s a lot of materialism and shallow themes going across all genres of pop music these days, and country music seems to be no exception, but it’s nice to see Dianña using her voice and place within the genre to bring the sound to new heights.
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Dianña says she was inspired to write “Hands” when she touched the hand of an older, working man’s hand and was startled by the contrast between their two hands. “I could just see the type of life he had led by looking at the scars and texture in his hands,” Dianña said. “Hands” functions as a beautifully sentimental showcase of what it takes to be a person in the working class demographic while not letting the years put on your hands dictate your life’s overall trajectory. There’s a knack within Dianña’s lyrics for painting humanistic portraits with her words, and “Hands” is a perfect example that showcases all of her strengths.