Thomas Rhett on His New Music: ‘These Are Not Your Average Songs on a Country Album’
Thomas Rhett is getting ready to release a new set of tunes, but the upcoming album comes with a warning: According to Rhett, the project will be unlike anything he, and possibly anyone else, has ever done before, at least in country music.
"These are not your average songs on a country album," Rhett tells Rolling Stone Country. In fact, some of the songs might even blur the lines of country music, with hints of Bruno Mars and Motown heard on several of the tracks.
"I've definitely been delving into that kind of music," Rhett admits. "Bruno has always been one of my idols, if you will. I've caught myself watching a bunch of YouTube videos late at night, just watching his stage presence and how he handles a crowd and moves around and works it. I realized I'm a very, very white dancer."
Rhett acknowledges that he has learned plenty from listening to Mars, which affects his current music.
“I’m obsessed with Bruno Mars’ records,” Rhett admits. “I’d give my right leg to be able to sing like that dude.”
The singer-songwriter recently gave fans a preview of one song, "Crash and Burn," on his Facebook page.
"If you listen to the lyrics to "Crash and Burn," it's like the saddest song in the world, but it feels happy," Rhett notes. "And I love those two different dynamics the song has in it. I've been inspired by the more funky soul side of myself lately."
The 25-year-old hinted early on that his sophomore record would stretch him, and his fans.
“It’s going to be very different,” he acknowledges. “There’s definitely going to be aspects of the second album that are going to correlate with the first album, but we’re going to push it farther, really production-wise and lyrically and melodically.”
Chances are good that a song written by Eric Church will also make the new record.
“It was one of the coolest co-writes of my life,” Rhett confesses. “We got together in Nashville — me and him and a guy named Luke Laird — and we wrote a really, really cool song that hopefully goes on the new album.”
While the final track list has yet to be released, Rhett says fans will be able to hear how far he stretched himself with the sophomore project.
"There are obviously going to be songs on the record that are a lot like the first album," he says, "but I thought it was fun to get out there and try new things for my voice and for my songwriting. These are just a small little batch that came from that."
See a Childhood Photo of Thomas Rhett!