I didn’t even know there was a state called Tennessee.It wasn’t until later in life that I found out that most music comes out of Nashville … is college, then Nashville is high school; everyone knows everyone. If I’d met you, I’d remember.” I just didn’t have the heart to tell him that maybe he saw me in a movie or on TV.
I hooked with Jerrod Niemann, Jamey Johnson, Randy Houser and a bunch of those guys. Jerrod and Jamey steered me through the shark invested waters.
Jerrod’s always been a close friend and Jamey’s actually the guy who walked me into Sony and said, “You need to hear this guy sing.” I owe my whole record deal with Sony’s Columbia [Records] to Jamey.
We’re going to make the music that we want to play.” And now, you can’t keep those guys off the charts. Did you write any songs for ‘The House Rules’ with them?
I’ve written with all of them, but Jerrod and I do have a song on my album, ‘Callin’ All Country Women.’ That was a big song because that was about me living in Los Angeles and really wanting to get back to my roots. A., because I like a girl from the country, from where I’m from. My goal in the entertainment industry — this counts for music and acting — is longevity. to be Brad Pitt, now I just want to be Gene Hackman.
‘The Dance‘ always hit me pretty hard, but it was ‘Shameless‘ that really got me.
You listen to it now and it doesn’t sound like a rock ‘n roll song, but back then it was rock ‘n roll.
I went out to Los Angeles and auditioned for a TV show called ‘Fame L. You’ve got to be careful what you ask for the Lord for, because if you ask or wish hard enough, you will get it. I grew up with the Highwaymen, which was Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson.
A.’ The original role was for a comedian, but they said I wasn’t very funny, so they asked me, ‘What else can you do? I’ve always been a singer but I didn’t know how to play guitar. Mom and Dad rode rodeo so country music was always in the house and the car. I started rocking and rolling when Guns N’ Roses came out.
I wrote my own songs for a long time, but when I moved to Nashville I started writing with other people.