Chase Rice is somewhat of an indie success story. Having been an independent artist, he slowly (but surely) built a loyal fan base by delivering in his live shows and singing about real life in his songs. With his single "Ready Set Roll," now a bonafide Top 20 radio hit, he speaks about the good times, as a way to escape the ho-hum of a the 9-to-5 way of life. The EDM-fused track is the lead sample from his forthcoming debut album Ignite The Night, which weaves together some of his EP's standout tracks into a cohesive set.
"The only way I know how to make music is the way I’ve made it in the past," he shares in an exclusive interview with NashvilleGab. "This ‘Ignite The Night’ album gives me confidence. People are showing up to my shows, and they’re loud and singing every song."
"On this album, I’m just a better writer, a better singer. The production is better, too. In every way, the music’s gotten better," the singer says of the final product, quickly adding that he's self-aware that he's not everyone's cup of tea. "Some people are going to hate it. That’s fine. That’s the way I want it. I want people to be passionate about the music."
On folding in previous cuts into the fold: "Some of the songs [on the EP] didn’t deserve to disappear. We have ‘How She Rolls,’ ‘Ready Set Roll’ and ‘Look At My Truck,’ which is a really meaningful song. We have a few other ones on the deluxe version. It just gives people options of what they want. We just figured out what works."
If there was one song to sum up his life at his moment, it would be "Carolina Can," he says. "It’s basically my life in a song. It talks about how crazy my life is and how I can always find peace or comfort in going home."
Aug. 19, the official Ignite The Night drop date, has a special place in Rice's heart. "The cool part about that was it was never planned. It was a kind of a coincidence," he confesses. "The date just worked to be able to do press on it and push the album. I’m happy now, though, to have it out for my dad’s birthday. He was a huge part of my life."
As one of the most promising acts of 2014, Rice recalls one of the biggest lessons his father taught him and how he relates that to his career, "He taught me a lot about staying true to yourself. I’ve had enough people telling me I’m not doing it right or not good enough. But I’ve learned to keep going."
After buidling steam out on the road and in Nashville, the singer-songwriter caught the attention of Columbia Nashville, which is currently working his gold-selling "Ready Set Roll" at radio. Outside of this partnership, he remains truly independent. "You can’t write a script better than that," he says of getting major label recognition. "I like being able to put out the songs I want to put out without a label coming in telling me what I need to do. That wouldn’t be a good relationship. It’s my vision. We’ve built this awesome thing. There’s no reason to change that yet."
With each generation of country music-making musicians, there comes criticisms. In today's market, the format is borrowing heavily from outside influences, including pop, R&B and hip-hop. That's something Rice knows plenty about, as many of his songs are prime examples of the modern evolution. Admittedly, he thinks this is a good thing. "Honestly, I stopped listening to other artists because I really wanted to hone in on my own sound," he explains, "That was just me wanting to focus on me and my music. If every artist does that for themselves, they’ll be fine singing what they want to sing."
"I love where country music is right now. I love what we’re singing about," he adds.
However, that bubble might be bursting. Newly-signed Dot Records duo Maddie & Tae have released a cleverly written track that addresses bro-country-isms and how females are portrayed. Rice addresses the song, which he recently tweeted about, "I love [the song]. The biggest thing for me and my music is I do it for me. I’m not going to sing about what they want to hear or what other people want me to sing about. If people like it or love it, that’s great. Come to a show and party with me."
He continues, "That’s what I love about that song. They’re singing about what they want to sing about. It’s their feelings in a song. The melody is awesome. They wrote the hell out of it. That’s them. They’re feisty. They are standing up for women in country music, which needs to happen."
Pre-order a copy of Ignite The Night on iTunes now!
Photos Courtesy Of Chase Rice
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