GIGsoup caught up with Chase Rice before his recent London Borderline date. The artist has recently released the acclaimed ‘Lambs & Lions’ (check out ‘Three Cords & The Truth’ if you get a chance) and is part of the way through what seems like a goliath sized tour covering both sides of the Atlantic…
Great to catch up with you here at the Borderline in London, how has the tour been so far?
Mind-blowing, to be honest, I didn’t think people here knew who I was. I didn’t know why they would, but they do and not only have they showed up, we sold out four of the five shows. They’re singing every word to almost every song. It’s really cool.
It’s an acoustic set, so it’s a different vibe to what I’ve been doing for the last five years in the States. It’s from the ground up here and we’re coming back next year, for sure. I’ll bring the band, so that’ll be a rock show.
It was interesting to see that when you were in Manchester you took time out to see Man City play. How did that come about?
I just wanted to see a football game and that’s who were playing! It’s cool to get involved, to see the passion behind the fans. It was an unbelievable experience. I’ve never seen a professional game. It was a first for me, awesome.
Sport has been a beloved and important part of your life, how has that influenced your music. How have the two worked together.
Guess you’d call it an edge in my life – how I was raised and how sports motivates men. Sure the music itself, but more so the business side. Sometimes it got me into trouble. In my mind I’m like no, I’ m better than you in this way and I wanna beat you. The world I came from, if I’m better than you I’ll try prove it and show you.
But, in the music business you can’t do that, it’s not like that. It’s not a competition like I’m used to. The music business had moulded me a little differently, in a good way and I’ve learned a lot. It’s about making the best music I can possibly make and that’s all that matters.
You have an interesting CV, you’ve been on reality TV show (Survivor), and you worked on the NASCAR circuit. How did your breakthrough into country music happen?
I was in college and just started learning to play guitar there. I got hurt playing football, so when that happened I had a lot of downtime. I started writing songs. Then my dad passed away and I wrote a song about him. That was my escape. I moved to Nashville with friends I’d know since we were kids. We started writing songs together.
Do you remember the first song you wrote that you played in public?
Yeah, it was ‘Larger than life’, a song about my dad, the first one. I wasn’t a great songwriter then, I was learning. I was a simple writer. In a lot of ways that can be really good, that’s what ‘Three Chords and the Truth’ is about. That’s what country music is, it’s three chords and the truth. That’s where I started as an artist and now here I am in the UK playing music and it’s really cool.
What is your approach to song writing?
They are all different, each day. The main approach would be whatever the title is, whatever the melody is, whatever the song is for that day, I’m not going to chase something or try to make it sound like something else. I going to try to make that song the best it can possible be for itself.
You have a new album out ’Lambs and Lions’ Tell us about the inspiration behind the tracks on that record?
Life – whatever I go through. Songs like ‘Unforgettable’ is a breakup song, I’ve been through that. ‘On my mind’ is about what happens after the break up. ‘Lions’ is a mentality I’ve been trying to keep during the last three years of ups and downs. ‘Saved me’ is about meeting another girl. ‘Eyes on you’ is about travelling with that girl. That song mentions London! This album has taken my across the world and I’m proud of it.
Is there one song that is particularly special to you?
I’d say ‘Amen’ is the heart of the record. It’s just me, the piano and a choir. The video will be out sometime around Christmas. That song’s about an ongoing secret to life. A man should know where it starts. It’s a big part of my life now.
What about your fans, what song do they always request or say ‘tell us more about that’
‘Eyes on you’! ‘Three Chords and the truth’ has its own deal going, but ‘Eyes on you’ is one they gravitate to and are always wanting me to sing. I think it is a song we’ll talk about in a year as a career changing one.
How will you be spending Christmas?
Going to Florida. I got a brother who lives in there. I’ll be hanging out with my niece and nephew in the sun, happy as can be.
Have you got any family traditions?
We wake up at 5.30am every Christmas morning. We wouldn’t want to sleep in as kids, we kept my dad awake. From that time, because we wanted to wake up early and open presents he woke us up early. So we still wake up at 5.30 and open presents.
Quick fire questions
Cars or trucks? Trucks
Survivor or forgiver- Forgiver
Ribs or wings? Wings
Album track or racetrack? Album track