Tell us a little bit about how you got into music
I started playing when I was about 8 years old. I just started playing bluegrass and bluegrass gospel back home in churches and my grandparents, well, my grandfather especially was always really into music and from there it kind of ended up into Honky Tonks. Somehow I made it from church pews to Honky Tonks!
You just released your new single, “I Got You,” earlier this month and it’s fantastic. Can you give us a little bit of a background on this song and the writing that went into it?
That song was actually the first song that I wrote when I got to Nashville, which is really cool because it was my first co-write with a buddy of mine. You know sometimes to co-write some songs might be a 3 to 4 hour write but I think that song was a little less than an hour. It just kind of fell out.
“I Got You” is the first ballad you released following your other singles “Start Pourin’ Whiskey On It” and “What’s Not To Love,” which were more up-tempo. How would you say fans are responding to this new song?
It’s surprising honestly to see because you know we released a couple of singles and they had some success with those songs, but this song particularly has really been connecting with folks on a much deeper level than the other songs I released.
You’ve toured over 200 dates across the country…do you have a favorite venue? What venue would you love to play in the future?
That would be Wild Horse International. My favorite city would have to be Everglade City, FL. It’s really a music festival, which we are actually headed there from here so it’s really cool. It’s just a little island that is taken over by music fans. As for a venue that I would love to play, I mean of course, The Opry. We also played with Darius Rucker at Country Music Festival on Myrtle Beach last year with probably 50,000 people there, so that was awesome.
What is on the horizon for you music career in 2018?
We are talking about lots of radio tours with “I Got You” and lots of live shows and touring, so it’s going to be a busy year.
Now onto some food questions…
From touring all over the country, you’ve probably gotten the chance to eat at many different restaurants. What are your top three US cities for food?
We played this one place and the guy was like, “No food is provided. We do homemade pizza. It’s amazing.” So this cat brings out like a frozen cracker and I can’t even describe what it tasted like, I wanna say it was like a sour brie but it was even worse than that. It was just the worst thing ever. It was gross. Then I got food poisoning one night from potato salad. This guy’s like “Oh we got this homemade potato salad you have to try it. It’s amazing.” You would think after the pizza experience when people really started talking about that I would be like “no no no” just give me your crap out of the bucket and I’ll be fine. So we tried the potato salad and of course I was food sick for the next two days. But other than that, we’ve had such great food across the country. Thats a tough one. I mean I love the chicken sandwich at Wildhorse Saloon. That’s probably one of my favorite chicken sandwiches. I mean it’s no Hattie B’s, but it’s great!
What’s your favorite restaurant here in Nashville?
Wildhorse Saloon! I mean, there are a couple of close seconds, but Wildhorse is my first choice.
What foods and drinks do you always have with you on the road?
We always have water, tea, coffee and Jack Daniels. That is the must haves on the bus. Also unsweet tea, which took me like two years to get onto that stuff. That stuff’s worse than crack. It’s terrible.
When you’re home do you like to cook or would you rather eat out?
I love to cook. My favorite dish to cook is chicken. If i’m home, I don’t like to go anywhere. I go to the grocery store and home. That’s it. Cooking has been a big part of my life for a long time.
Finally for Battered and Brewed, if you could have a meal and a drink with one person, dead or alive, who would it be and what would you have?
Willie Nelson and probably brownies. Just because it’s Willie. You know to me he’s like the last of the greats that’s still with us. You know Merle has passed, and there are so many of those guys that have passed and you know growing up listening to those guys…they just molded me into the man and artist I have become. I just think that would be an interesting conversation.