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HARDY And Friends Bring HIXTAPE To New Heights in Joe Diffie Tribute: HIXTAPE: Vol. 3: DIFFTAPE

The project brings together a new cast of characters collaborating on renditions of Diffie's beloved classics.

Credit: Big Loud

Bringing a new era of collaborations and hosting a timeline of pivotal artists, HIXTAPE: Vol. 3: DIFFTAPE, produced by Joe Moi, brings HIXTAPE to the next level. Being released on the fourth anniversary since his passing, Joe Diffie’s work is remembered, honored, and reimagined by today’s country artists. The album features never-before-heard recordings of Joe captured in 2006, and one previously unreleased original (“Life Had Plans For Me”) featuring his son, Parker.


“It is both an honor and a humbling experience to have been asked to participate in this extraordinary project," Parker shares in a press statement. "As someone who had the profound privilege of performing alongside my father, it fills my heart with immense joy to witness his enduring legacy continued with the same passion and fervor that he embodied. The release of HIXTAPE: Vol. 3: DIFFTAPE is an opportunity to not only celebrate the past, but also to embrace the future with reverence and enthusiasm.”

“I'm honored that we get to be a small part of the legacy of Joe Diffie with DIFFTAPE,” HARDY shared in a press statement. “The thing I've always admired about Joe's catalog is the quality of the songs. He had an unbelievable ear for hits, and I love that we got this cast together to celebrate them.”

HIXTAPE left the country music community in shock when they unveiled their glamorous list tracks, featuring thirty country music stars! From CMA and Grammy winners, to the late great Toby Keith, country music comes together to make a project that would make Diffie proud.

The first of Diffie's many #1 hits within his discography is “Home”. This hit is a reminder that no matter where life takes someone or how far away they go, there is always a place they can go back to. This track reimagined is harmoniously delivered by Darius Rucker and Hailey Whitters. Bringing a highly-esteemed artist who has been in the industry for decades with an emerging artist whose breakthrough has been stunning is the epitome of this album. Whether "home" is a place or a person, this collaboration reminds us that country music is home- no matter where one is on their journey. Nostalgia is the theme throughout the lyrics, and that is the place this sublime collaboration takes us to. 

“If The Devil Danced In Empty Pockets” hosts the collaboration between Koe Wetzel and Jack Ingram. Two voices from different ends of country music who traditionally portray different styles are paired perfectly for this cover. East Texas natives with a traditionally edgy tune from Koe and charismatic calmness from Jack unite to honor Diffie in this hit that makes it easy to jump to the dance floor. Joe Diffie is guaranteed to have danced along to this reconstructed version of his hit.

Perhaps the most sentimental track on the project, is the revived version of Diffie's 1992 hit song, "Ships That Don't Come In." The track, that feature's Diffie's vocals alongside Luke Combs and Toby Keith, reminds us why country music collaborations are magic. The song also marks Keith's final recorded vocal before his passing in February.The timeless track narrates the personal story of two men philosophizing about the nature of life while having a conversation at a bar. Blending three of the most beloved voices in our genre is a true game changer and tear-jerker on the album.

Sometimes remaking a classic can be lackluster, however the reimagined version of “Prop Me Up Beside The Jukebox (If I Die)," is just as much of a bop as it was in 1993. Staying true to its fun-loving nature, Tracy Lawrence, Lainey Wilson, The Difftones alongside Diffie offer up a country choir that is second to none. While Lawrence and Wilson let their distinct vocals are showcased, it's the eternal ethos of Diffie that shines through. 

Taking on songs of a beloved icon is no easy task, yet somehow HIXTAPE manages to respectfully elevate each of the seventeen tracks. HIXTAPE: Vol. 3: DIFFTAPE serves as a honky-tonk time machine that would leave even Diffie grinning from ear to ear. 


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