Granger Smith released his eighth studio album, When the Good Guys Win, on Friday (Oct. 27). The 14-track record, his second on Broken Bow's Wheelhouse Records, includes his current Top 30 single "Happens Like That." Smith is known as one of the hardest-working artists in country music, having released a number of records on his own before signing with a major label and keeping a tour schedule that rivals some of the most successful artists in the business while doing most of the work himself. But the 38-year-old insists he works hard not because he has to, but because he wants to.

"My passion for this is what fuels the tenacity. So the better question is, where does the passion come from, or what causes the passion? And that was like a pilot light that was lit when I was a teenager," Smith tells The Boot. "Every time I got onstage and every time I wrote a song that I loved, there was fuel going on that pilot light.

"I say this a lot about making music and performing: There’s a lot of it that’s similar [to] where I could have this feeling writing a song and go, ‘This is the greatest song ever. This feels like this could change the whole world. This is going to change the world of music as we know it.' And guess what? 99.99999 percent, it doesn’t; it won’t. But it’s that feeling -- that high you chase at that moment of creation," Smith continues. "And there’s moments in the live show: I could be three-quarters of the way through the show and go, ‘I think this is the best I’ve ever done.’ I’ve also thought, ‘This is the worst I’ve ever done.’ But that feeling of, ‘This is the best I’ve ever played. I’m rocking at 100 percent right now. I haven’t messed up once,’ I think that a lot. And so those are the feelings that fuel the passion that in turn creates the tenacity."

Smith, who had the opportunity to open for Luke Bryan in 2016, is headlining his own shows over the next several months, as well as opening for Bryan at a few more tour stops. The Texas native enjoys writing and recording, but performing will always be his favorite part of his job.

"The show is the best part," Smith says. "There’s a lot of really good things: I like the camaraderie. I like the freedom. I like playing music for a living, traveling, meeting people, seeing things, but the show is the best. That 60-90 minutes when the lights come on and we go out there, it’s like, this is the payoff from the making the music. It’s the delivery of product."

When the Good Guys Win is available for purchase on Amazon and iTunes. A list of all of Smith's upcoming shows is available on his website.

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