Aaron Watson includes a song about immigration on his new Vaquero album. "Clear Isabel" and its 90-second interlude "Mariano's Dream" are the centerpiece of a 16-song album. The timing of the singer's message is not coincidence.

Together the two songs tell the story of a father desperately trying to get his daughter into Texas so she can leave a better life than he knew growing up. It's part love story, part tragedy. The sum is a statement that comes down on one side of the immigration debate. Watson romanticizes the immigrant story, with his character ultimately marrying Isabel before her father is shot dead along the border.

"We got a green card for her father Mariano but it came two years too late / We got word that he'd been gunned down in a border town, shot in the back / The last thing they heard him say / I hear the grass is greener just beyond that Laredo border line / And they say that freedom is much sweeter than sweet blood-red sangria wine ..." Watson sings.

"I get asked this question a lot," Watson tells Taste of Country of a song that is sure to find detractors. "And it comes back to love."

Aaron Watson Vaquero Album Art
Big Label Records

The native Texan strongly believes in accountability along the border to keep illegal substances out of the country. "But at the same time," he says, "if I was a father on the other side of the border and my family was suffering I would pack my bags come to Texas."

Watson simply wanted listeners to understand that the wall would be affecting real people who are truly suffering. "I wanted people just to stop and think about," he says. "I mean really, just stop and think about it."

Not political by nature — he says he'd rather talk about Jesus or baseball — Watson makes more than one social statement on Vaquero. Part 1 of this Unfiltered series explored statements he wanted his daughter and female fans to hear about true love. Part 2 explores his worldview. Watch to see how "They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To" does that as well. Both songs lean into older, perhaps forgotten imagery but still sound very fresh and very relevant.

Watch Part 1 of Aaron Watson Unfiltered

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