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Toby Keith Shares Inspiration Behind Song Appearing in Clint Eastwood Movie, ‘The Mule’

It was during a day on the golf course that Toby Keith was inspired by Clint Eastwood to write a song that is now featured in The Mule.

Written by Lauren Laffer
Toby Keith Shares Inspiration Behind Song Appearing in Clint Eastwood Movie, ‘The Mule’
NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 24: Toby Keith performs onstage during Skyville Live Presents a Tribute to Jerry Lee Lewis on August 24, 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Skyville)

Inspiration can strike at just about any time, and for Toby Keith, his lighting bulb moment was on the golf course. It was during a tournament in California that the iconic singer was paired up with the event’s host Clint Eastwood and they got to talking.

“I was invited to be his partner for three days … and riding with him was amazing,” Keith told NewsOK in a recent interview.

It was during that time that the “Beer For My Horses” singer asked Eastwood what he was planning on doing for his birthday just days away. The 88-year-old actor shared that he was off to film a new movie called The Mule for three months. He then let Keith in on the storyline of the picture.

“I said, ‘What keeps you going?’ and he said, ‘I get up every day and don’t let the old man in.’ So, I came home, wrote a song for him called ‘Don’t Let the Old Man In’ and sent it to him. And he put it in his movie,” Keith explained. “He absolutely loves it. It is a very powerful song, and I probably if it wasn’t for the movie really wouldn’t have anywhere to go with it. … It’s a very emotional, dramatic piece of music and as good as I’ve ever done in my life.”

He continued, “He treated me like his son, he treated me great, and I thought, ‘Man, I should take this idea he gave me and write it … and send it to him and say “Hey, you inspired me to write a song so I wanted to tell you thank you for being such a good guy.”’ And he put it in his movie – and it fits.”

The Mule is Eastwood’s first movie that he both stars and directs in since 2009’s Gran Torino. The film follows an older man who becomes an unwilling drug courier in order to take care of his family. The feature, set for release on Dec. 14, also includes Bradley Cooper, Michael Pena and Laurence Fishburne.

“Don’t Let The Old Man In” will debut on Friday and appears in the closing credits of The Mule.