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Chris Stapleton: ‘I Have No Idea What’s Next’

Chris Stapleton what's next
Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Much changed for Chris Stapleton after his three wins at the 2015 CMA Awards, at which he took home trophies for New Artist of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year and Album of the Year: The singer-songwriter is now spending his second week at No. 1 with his debut album, Traveller, and has become one of the most-buzzed-about artists in country music, thanks at least in part to his unforgettable performance with Justin Timberlake. The sudden change, Stapleton admits, is going to take some adjustment.

“I have no idea what’s next,” Stapleton acknowledged to The Boot and other reporters at a recent media event. “I’ve been in the music business a while, but I’ve never done anything like this. It’s been a bit overwhelming, but I’m going to do my best to handle it with some degree of grace. I’m gonna keep making music that hopefully I think is good, and whatever comes out of that, that will be fine with me.”

Stapleton says that he plans on continuing doing what he loves: making music and touring, including an upcoming trek through Europe.

“I’m excited about that. Only once have I been overseas, a long, long time ago. I went to Switzerland, to play an acoustic gig with my wife, and haven’t been back over much since,” he explains. “It’s an exciting prospect for me to get overseas and see how country music can be received over there.

“[I always like] to see new places and meet new people and have new experiences, hopefully, and just take that in and see what it brings to life,” Stapleton adds. “I think all those things kind of enhance your life.”

While critics and fans used Stapleton’s unforgettable night as leverage to criticize country radio (Stapleton hasn’t received much airplay), the 37-year-old continues to take the high road.

“I feel very loved by the awards, but I don’t feel like music is a war or it’s a battle or anything like that, and I think people have a tendency to try to make it into that,” he says. “We all are out here, and anybody that’s in here tonight, making music and working to the degree that it takes to be in the room, deserves the respect, and I think that of everybody that is out playing music.”

Purchase Traveller on Amazon and iTunes.

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NEXT: Chris Stapleton + More Country Stars' Summer Anthems

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