Rascal Flatts Itching to Break Boundaries After 10 Years
Over the past 10 years, Rascal Flatts have clearly mastered the art of picking and writing songs that consistently sweep them to the top of the charts -- not to mention, establish themselves in the hearts of their devoted legions of fans, who this past year alone, bought 1 million tickets to see them in concert.
Gary, Jay and Joe Don firmly believe it all boils down to one thing: knowing who they are ... and who they aren't.
"When you've been together as long as we have, and you spend as much time together on the stage as we do, we know more what our strengths are and maybe what our weaknesses are," Jay DeMarcus tells Nashville's Tennessean newspaper. "I think that's enabled us to pick material through the years that has helped us better express ourselves as artists."
Songwriters who have come to learn over the past decade the kind of songs Rascal Flatts can turn to gold, have also made it possible for the trio to best express themselves.
"The people who have been writing for us over the years have been able to latch on and get a better idea of what we're about, so the material constantly gets better and better," Jay continues. "When you take a Jeffrey Steele or a Neil Thrasher, and they write a song and we do it, and it becomes a No. 1 -- the next time around, that's a great template for them to start from, so the material keeps evolving. And we have a knack for knowing what will perform well, and what we can put our voices and talents to that will succeed for us."
So after 10 years of mind-boggling success -- one multi-platinum album after another -- is there anything Rascal Flatts still dream of achieving?
"I want to do a polka record!" Jay jokes. "Gary's really been getting into it a lot lately!"
"I've got a dance too, but my hips are getting sore," Gary quips, laughing. And then more seriously, "We really feel like we're just getting started. We have so much left to say, and so much left to do."
And oh, how they're itching to stretch wildly beyond the gilded edges of the template of success they've established for themselves these past 10 years. So much so, Rascal Flatts are putting fans on notice -- expect the unexpected.
"We've talked about doing a gospel record someday," Jay reflects. "We'd like to do a full-blown Christmas record at some point, and we'd like to stretch some, too. The six records we've done have been unmistakable Rascal Flatts. But there's an itch inside of each one of us that wants to do a hardcore country record that hearkens back to the stuff we grew up on, and that our parents loved ... and that we've been singing our whole lives. It wouldn't be out of the ordinary to see a few surprises from us."