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June 4, 2024 56 mins

Zach Williams (@Zachwilliamsmusic) sat down with Bobby Bones to share an inside look of his career and personal life. He talks about his early wild days and the time he thought he broke his eye socket and how an injury led him to start playing guitar. He also opens up about losing his basketball scholarship because he failed a drug test. Zach also gets vulnerable about when he asked God for a sign to change his life. He also recalled when he played a song for Dolly Parton that made her cry, getting a record deal at 38 while he was working at a church and more! 

Get Zach's book 'Rescue Story' HERE

Pre-order Zach kid's book 'A Little More Like Jesus' HERE

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:06):
Still on stage that time at church for the first
time singing that song. It was the first time that
I ever felt comfortable on stage in my own skin.

Speaker 2 (00:16):
Welcome to Episode four fifty five with Zach Williams. My
introduction to Zach was somebody going, hey, how long have
you known Zach Williams? That this is the opera And
I was like, I don't know Zach Williams. Like voice
form Mararkansas. So I think people just think we all
know each other it's all the time. Yeah, I mean
it's not a terribly small state. It's I mean it's
I guess smaller, but there's like millions of people that

live there. Yeah, you don't know everybody. It's like, hey,
I drove through Arkansas once.

Speaker 3 (00:41):
You know him?

Speaker 2 (00:42):
Yeah, so that and I was like, I do not.
And then I introduced him at the opera. I was
familiar with his music, but really didn't know his story
story until he came over, and you know, we'd kind
of done some research on him. First of all, he's
just an amazing live performer. That's what I knew from
watching him perform. And in the intro I had talked
about like, but I don't write the intro for the Opry.

So our producer with the Opry, who's awesome, writes the intro,
and in that intro he was kind of telling me
a bit about Zach's story and yeah, this dude, I mean,
he went through it. Yeah, but he went through it
in a way of you know, he tried to be
a rock star, was on the way, but kind of
just got taken over by the not good parts of

the road. And what's crazy is it's like when he
stopped chasing it, it's like when it started chasing him
back again. And you'll hear all of this in the story.
This dude's also big tall guy. Yeah from the opery
he was like twenty feet away, didn't seem that tall,
but especially in boots, but you know, basketball player. But
this is that story of somebody who really wanted it,

went hard at it, probably was good enough to get
up and made a couple of other decisions that didn't
allow it and just kind of allowed it just to
take him to where and now he's back kind of
to where he wanted to be, but just in a
different lane. It's a great story. I liked him a
lot from this stick out to you. I mean I
just love any story of somebody making it later in life.
It's just kind of inspiring to me of like even

if you have a dream that hasn't worked out early, like,
don't give up on it.

Speaker 3 (02:09):

Speaker 2 (02:10):
He's got an album one hundred Highways now that's been
out for about a year and a half or so.
He's got Live at the Moody Theater Austin City Limits
that's out, but it's songs that are on other records.
He's got a children's book that's coming out, which we
talked about. But it kind of tricked me because, yeah,
you'll hear it. Zach Williams Great. Follow him Zach Williams

Music on Instagram. And away we go.

Speaker 3 (02:36):
Where to Arkansas? Are you from?

Speaker 2 (02:38):
I am from We're rolling.

Speaker 3 (02:40):
If you're good, I'm good.

Speaker 2 (02:42):
I'm from a town called Mountain Pine that is central.
It's about when we would go to town. Town would
be Hot Springs, oh yeah. And then from Hot Springs
if you were going to go to any sort of
touring anything, it was Little Rock, which was an hour away.

Speaker 3 (02:58):
So it was.

Speaker 2 (03:00):
Town was where Walmart was the edge Hot Springs, and
then Little Rock was where the Arkansas travelers they were
in Little Rocks then yeah, and then uh, anything coming
through you know, it's cool. And you're from near jones.

Speaker 1 (03:12):
Boro, I'm from Yeah, a little town called Bono. Actually,
it's like twelve hundred people.

Speaker 2 (03:17):
So I played a bunch of baseball, so we'd travel around.
If you played Legion ball in Arkansas, you pretty much
go everywhere.

Speaker 3 (03:24):
It was.

Speaker 2 (03:26):
Bono. Bono. Bono was the school Bono. There wasn't one time,
because I don't remember a Bono school district.

Speaker 1 (03:32):
I went to Bono until second grade, and then there
was a there was a several schools around that area
that consolidated and started a high school called west Side
High School.

Speaker 2 (03:42):
And that was just in the edge of like Jonesboro. Yeah,
what was the Bono What was the Bono mascot chiefs?
The Bono Chiefs. Cool, it was like the Bono Sonnies.
It was.

Speaker 3 (03:53):
It was a yeah, I mean a small old town. Yeah,
but I know where you're from. Hello, thank you.

Speaker 2 (04:00):
He's the most punct He's awesome. Hey, all right, what
do you got here?

Speaker 3 (04:04):
Got you my new children's book? In my new book
that's passing on over here?

Speaker 2 (04:08):
What's up?

Speaker 3 (04:09):
That's not the actual book, it's just a cover.

Speaker 2 (04:11):
Yeah, so it's not really the book.

Speaker 3 (04:15):
It's not. It doesn't come out till August.

Speaker 2 (04:17):
I would have given you a pre release. When I
first looked at that, I was like, this is not
my hold it up here for the camera. Look, this
is not the book, but it's going to look something
like this. Is this the actual size of the book though, Yeah,
it's underneath a little more like Jesus. And then this
book though, is that you can stay? Are you staying
or going?

Speaker 3 (04:36):

Speaker 2 (04:36):
That's quick? All right, Well, good thanks, good to see
you appreciate it, made an entrance, made it goodbye, And
then this is this is your book?

Speaker 3 (04:45):

Speaker 2 (04:46):
When did this will come out?

Speaker 3 (04:47):
Uh? That came out. I'm trying to think the end
of April. It's been out. No, end of February. It's
been out for about a month.

Speaker 2 (04:55):
Oh, it's still new. It's new. So the weird let
me ask you. I want to come back to the
the book in a second. But the weird part about
Arkansas and growing up is that it's it's odd whenever
someone goes, I'm from here and you don't know the mascot.
That's why I asked what the mascot was. Usually if
someone comes in and there from like, I'm from this,
I went to college here. I know them all, but

I didn't know Bono, the Bono Chiefs and now the
west Side Warriors. Warriors, did you have a warrior mascot
like dressed up in a suit and what's the dative American?
Did you have to stop?

Speaker 3 (05:31):
We did, and I think they did have to stop.

Speaker 2 (05:33):

Speaker 3 (05:33):
Yeah, it got political there for a little bit. How
tall are you? Six six? God?

Speaker 2 (05:39):
Dang, I don't realize that you're that big. So we've met, Okay,
I'm just making sure.

Speaker 3 (05:43):
Yeah, we met at the Yeah.

Speaker 2 (05:45):
I was telling them like, I don't know if if
you remember meeting me, but I remember meeting you absolutely.
And one of the things was our like my buddy,
and he was part of my crew Read the first
time you were scheduled, his grandma died, so we had
to like last minute kind of push everything.

Speaker 1 (06:00):
I think I met him at rehearsals if you maybe
a month ago before the tour started, and he was.

Speaker 2 (06:04):
Like, whenever Zach comes in, I want to be there,
and so we rescheduled and then Read's gone again today,
so it's really going to drive him crazy. I did
not know you were six six, Yeah, I know you
played ball.

Speaker 3 (06:14):
Did ye played play a year in college basketball? Right? Yeah?

Speaker 1 (06:18):
I went to college for to play and I tore
my leg up, tore my ankle at my first first season.

Speaker 2 (06:24):
I'm going to come back to that. So I want
to talk about the book for a second. So a
month why this sits with me is a month is
when I started to really begin to get feedback about
the each of my books I had written. Because books
so different than music. Yeah, if you put a song out,
people can tell you five minutes later, yeah, love it,

hate it. It made me feel this way if you
put a book out, you just sit and wait, because
it takes a while to Yeah, And it took me
about a good month to act really start getting thoughtful
and not I'm not saying nice feedback, but thoughtful feedback
on people who had actually read it and had taken
the time to give me feedback on what was good

or what they felt hit them the hardest or Yeah.
So now that you've had the book out of month,
what are a couple of the stories that you that
you didn't think would be like ones that people talked about,
but now that they bring up to you.

Speaker 1 (07:26):
I think I think just an overall general like what
I'm getting back, I mean, obviously people. I think people
are really liking it. I think the thing that people
are getting out of the book is for when they
didn't know quite how wild I was, you know, and
and the relationship that me and my wife had. There's
a pretty funny story in there, say funny my wife.

You know, she put up with a lot for me
for years, and and there's a story that we talk
about in there. One night I come home and I
was pretty messed up, and she'd give me a pretty
good sock in the eye, and I thought I broke
my I brought my eye socket like an orbital.

Speaker 3 (08:02):
Yeah. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (08:02):
And so people are like, I can't believe your wife
did that. She's a boss, you know. And I was like, yeah,
I was like I probably I deserved it.

Speaker 3 (08:09):
I know I did. But I think the thing that
people are.

Speaker 1 (08:11):
Coming back and talking to me about I meet them
at shows and stuff, and they're like, man, your parents,
Like what an awesome set of parents that you have,
you know, just to continually pray for you and love
you through this mess that you were going through in
your life, and just never give up. And so that
was really the reason why I wanted to write the
book is because I meet a lot of people before
and after shows, a lot of grandparents and moms and

dads who have sons and daughters that struggle and that
are going through things in their life, and they're just like, man,
I just don't know what to do. And I'm like,
just keep praying for them, just keep trusting that God
has a plan for their life. And you know, I
was thirty three years old, grew up in church, Dad
was a worship leader, and I was thirty three before
I got it figured out, you know, And I said,
but it took years of prayer for my family, and

you know, they just never gave up. And so I
think that's the takeaway that a lot of people are
getting from it. And I'm just normal, dude, What did
you think?

Speaker 2 (09:02):
I'm just so interested because you're at that time of
your book being out, now that people have had time
to read it.

Speaker 3 (09:07):
Yeah, what what did you think the.

Speaker 2 (09:12):
Through line people were going to take from it would be?
And is it exactly what you thought because mine wasn't
at all.

Speaker 1 (09:19):
I think, for the most part, I think they are.
I mean, I think what I tried to lay out
in the book was that I'm just normal, Like I'm
a normal guy, you know, just because these things have
happened to me in my life. And you know, I've
been able to have success as a songwriter and a musician,
Like it's only because I've been obedient to what you know,
I feel like God has called me to do. Because

you can look and reading the pages of the book.
For years of my life, I struggled and I was
in a rock band, and it wasn't because we weren't
good enough. It was just because I feel like God
kept me from those things in my life because he
knew how I achieved it at a young age or
maybe gotten those things that at a certain age I
might not be here today.

Speaker 3 (09:57):
And yeah, I think that.

Speaker 1 (10:01):
I just think people are, you know, realizing that you
you don't have to be perfect and have it all together.
Like that was the reason for the Cross, and I'm
hoping that's what they're getting from it, because that was
why I wrote the book.

Speaker 2 (10:14):
You know, do you ever feel, man, I'm being possibly
too vulnerable here. Yeah, maybe not too but a little
uncomfortable were you had to even push yourself it.

Speaker 3 (10:24):
Was, Yeah, I mean it was definitely yeah. I mean
I told it all.

Speaker 2 (10:31):
You know.

Speaker 1 (10:31):
There were some stories in there that obviously I wasn't
proud of that my parents didn't even know about. But
I was like, if I'm gonna do it as, we'll
talk about it all.

Speaker 2 (10:38):
Did you run? I was single when I wrote both
of my books. Nothing Kid's book, As He Cares, but
that it's not even adult book. That sounds weird, it's
like porn. But I didn't have anybody that I had
to like go through.

Speaker 3 (10:50):
Yeah, like my wife.

Speaker 2 (10:52):
Now, if I wrote a book and I was gonna
write a lot of really personal stuff and I was
going to include her, I would have like, I have
a comedy special that we're almost done with, and she
had a couple of parts in it, but she watched
it to make sure that she was cool with. Yeah,
not only what I was saying that affected her, but
even her little parts. Did you have your wife read it?
Your parents read it? Or was it like surprise?

Speaker 1 (11:12):
No? No, No, I actually had my wife my parents
read the first draft. My wife actually wrote quite a
bit in there as well, because there's I think maybe
fourth or fifth chapter. She kind of comes in and
starts starts telling her side of the stories that I'm telling,
because she remembered them a whole lot better than I did,
and so it was kind of that, here's my side
of the story, and then Krystal would come in and

be like, here's here's my side, here's what really happened.

Speaker 2 (11:35):
And so it's a great idea. Who had the idea actually.

Speaker 1 (11:38):
The guy that helped me write the book, Robert Nolan,
thought it would be a really cool idea to get
her perspective, and I think I think it was great,
you know, and I think out of through the book,
like I remember when we sat down and he read
the book to us after it was completely finished, and
we were just in tears. I was like, man, what
a crazy story we have, you know, because I remember

when I start to write in the book, thinking I
don't have enough to write about.

Speaker 3 (12:03):
Nobody wants to hear me blab around share about my life.

Speaker 1 (12:06):
And then when we finished it, I was like, wow,
you know, this is really really cool to see what
God's done in our life, you know. And we come
from completely different backgrounds, you know, and but it's it's
worked out.

Speaker 2 (12:19):
So I remember, because we were with the Opery together
and I'm this part's a little blurry, but I think
I was on the TV show and I was like,
setting you up from the prompter, right, Was I doing
an intro for you from the prompter?

Speaker 3 (12:31):
You did?

Speaker 1 (12:32):
And then and then we came. I came by and
spoke to you after my set for a second, so we.

Speaker 2 (12:37):
Talked side by side for a second.

Speaker 3 (12:38):
We did yeah, because I think Luke Colmbs was coming
out after me.

Speaker 2 (12:41):
I know you were six six then, Like I purposely
didn't stand up when you walked in. I didn't want
to feel small, but I remember because I knew that
you were from Arkansas, and I knew that you were
I and we'll get into this. I know you were
a Christian artist, but I didn't know your full story,
that you hadn't always been and that and that there
was a lot of struggle that got you to where

you are now. And my producer was like, hey, like,
do you know Zach. I was like, I don't know personally,
but I know what he does. I like his music. Yeah,
then now, but I didn't know your previous yeah at all.

Speaker 1 (13:11):
I short story was, you know, I didn't I didn't
play music at all until college. I went to college,
went to little school in northwest Arkansas.

Speaker 2 (13:22):
No, your family played music.

Speaker 3 (13:23):
My dad was My dad played music. He was a musician.

Speaker 2 (13:26):
And you know, you didn't play at all.

Speaker 1 (13:28):
I didn't play it all. There was a guitar in
our house growing up as a kid. I walked past
it every day. Picked up the basketball. That's that was
my dream. I wanted to play in the NBA one day.
And uh, when I got in trouble my my high
school year and got in trouble for drug use my
senior year of high.

Speaker 2 (13:44):
School and lost a couple of basketball scholarships, they expel
you from school.

Speaker 3 (13:49):
Yeah, it was kind of a it was. It was
a little different than that it was. It was.

Speaker 1 (13:53):
It was a big ordeal. You know, there was I guess,
I guess you could say because of me and around
my area. That was when mandatory drug tests for athletes
started happening the next the next year.

Speaker 3 (14:06):
But we were in our senior year. You know, ebody
thought we would win this, you know, the state tournament.
It was. It was a big deal.

Speaker 1 (14:12):
And uh, we were like eight and one going into
Christmas break and I got in trouble. For me and
three other guys that were like the standouts on the
team got in trouble for drug use. But it was
like it was it was more it was it was
kind of one of those things where we were just
being made an example of because there was a lot.

Speaker 3 (14:29):
More people that were doing it.

Speaker 2 (14:30):
That's what it feels like.

Speaker 1 (14:31):
And so we were kind of run through the office
with the sheriff's deputies and everybody there, and you made
an example. And and basically when it was all said
and done, we were we were expelled from school. Law
you reached out because they put our names in the
paper and we were all miners and said hey, you
know there's a lawsuit here. And we went back, had
a big school board thing, and it when it was

all said and done, it was like, I don't want
to pursue this. We had schools from all the areas going, hey,
if you'll move into our district, you can start on
our basketball team and played for us, and me and
my dad thought about it for a minute, tried to
look for an apartment, didn't work out, and I was like, hey,
they ended up saying, well, we're just going to suspend
you guys for ten days from school. But I'd been
kicked off the basketball team, and I was like, I

don't want to go back, So I dropped out at
Christmas break, got my ged and three or four days
later and went to work for my dad who had
a drywall business, and worked for him for about six months.
And while I was working for him, I was playing
in a men's like intermural league and I met a
guy who said, Hey, I just graduated college a few
years back from here, and I know the coach really well.

Speaker 3 (15:35):
If if you want to try out for the team,
I can get you a try out. And he set
it up and I went up to North Arkansas College
in Harrison, Arkansas and tried out for the team and
got a full scholarship, and the next year, pretty much
right on track, still with you know, my life.

Speaker 1 (15:50):
Moved to play basketball in college. And the day before
our senior or the day before my freshman season started,
we were just having like a walk through practice and
I did lace of my tennis shoes up. We were
just running some plays and a buddy of mine jumped
up to shoot a layup and I jumped up and
blocked it. I landed on his foot and tore all
the ligaments in my ankle and I was done, that

landed on the foot and so I was I mean,
it sounded like a gunshot and it looked like a
softball had been cut in half and was on the
side of my ankle. And and so that was the
year that I didn't have anything going on, and my
roommate had a acoustic guitar in our apartment and I
sat on the edge of my bed with a poster
on the wall had all the guitar chords on it

and just taught myself.

Speaker 3 (16:33):
How to play.

Speaker 1 (16:34):
And next semester there was a creative writing class that
was offered, so I took that, started writing school, though yeah,
stayed in school, played basket playing again, like going yeah, yeah.
I played the next season it, so uh, basically I
just had a lot of free time. And so while
that was going on, I threw myself into music and
I was like, man, this is this is kind of
I think, this is what I want to do. And

I was still partying quite a bit, and I thought, well,
if I can get good enough at writing songs and
playing music, I can be a rock star. So I
played it, played the season, Uh, graduated there with an
Associates of Arts, transferred back to Arkansas State to get
a graphic design degree.

Speaker 2 (17:10):
What position did you play at six?

Speaker 3 (17:11):
Six? In college?

Speaker 1 (17:13):
I was I was a two to three guard because
we ran an offense in high school where I shot
threes at the top of the key.

Speaker 3 (17:18):
So I was a three point.

Speaker 2 (17:19):
Shooter, so six, So yeah, that's pretty intomazing.

Speaker 1 (17:23):
It was, it was, yeah, And so when I moved
back to Jonesboro and went to college, I pursued music
more than I was pursuing my art degree. And after
you know, plenty of people when you should, you should
go for this, and you know you're you're a much
better musician than you are at school. You know, why
don't you try to do this? And so I dropped

out with thirty hours left for a bachelor's Yeah, so
that's too. So I mean that's a that's a year.

Speaker 3 (17:52):
Right, another year.

Speaker 1 (17:52):
Yeah, and started playing music and writing songs, and by
the into my twenties, I was in a rock band
and we were turning all over the country and Europe,
and I.

Speaker 2 (18:04):
Got a lot of questions. I got a lot of
questions listening listening just to that. I got a lot
of questions in general, but just to that, where'd you
get the chord sheet because I bought the same one
from Walmart if it's the same one.

Speaker 1 (18:16):
So at the time, it was a it was a
poster that I bought. I bought it Hastings. It was
a poster that was on the wall. And I had
this mel Bay like old like these mel Bay blues
books and stuff that would teach you how to play
like blues chords and you know, twelve twelve bar blues
things like that, and I would just sit there and
flip through the pages and you know, do all of

that and got good enough. I think the first like
tab song I learned how to play was that Blackbird
by the Beatles. It was just all fingerpicking.

Speaker 2 (18:44):
So hey, mine was like deep purple, Oh yeah, smoke
on the water, Smoke on the water, like yours is
like Eli.

Speaker 1 (18:54):
Well I did that, but I'm saying like the first
real like challenging thing was like I want to learn
how to play back, you know, Blackbird. But yeah, and
then and then when I started trying to sing, it
was like knocking on Heaven's Door was like the first
song I could actually play and sing and.

Speaker 2 (19:08):
At the same time, because there is definitely a coordination
and so.

Speaker 3 (19:11):
That gave me like I was like, oh I can,
I can maybe do this.

Speaker 2 (19:14):
When did you do it for the first time for anybody?

Speaker 1 (19:18):
So after I moved back from college, or after I
moved back from Harrison to Jonesboro, we had like a
there's a couple of guys in my art class that
were musicians, and there was like this little art show
one night, and everybody was doing different things, and you know,
Buddy played a couple of songs. It was the first
time I'd ever played in front of people other than
like in somebody's garage.

Speaker 2 (19:39):
How'd you feel about that, even the garage playing, the
first time you played publicly, did it come to you
somewhat natural? Somewhat Yeah, You're already a perform You're a
basketball play right, so you're already a performer in a sense.
People are watching what you do. So it wasn't like,
oh my god, I gotta do it.

Speaker 3 (19:52):

Speaker 1 (19:52):
It was a little nerve wrecking, and it still is
to this day. I mean I still get a little
little nervous every night I go on stage. But it
was just it was one of those things where it
was like I love doing it so much, you know,
it was I loved getting feedback from something that I'd written.
And then you know, over the years, you'd write a
song and then you'd go to a party and somebody
be like, hey, play that song you wrote like and
I was like, oh, yeah, I actually like that. You

want to hear it again. So that kind of kept
me going for, you know, all those years. And then
what'd your dad say about all this though?

Speaker 2 (20:19):
Because you're working for him, but you go back to
school and then do you say I'm going to do music.
That's a crazy coming from Arkansas. If you tell somebody
you're gonna do a you have a creative job. Yeah,
it's not that they don't believe in you, it's just
nobody else does that.

Speaker 1 (20:32):
So yeah, I mean dad was kind of like, you don't,
you know, just pick up a guitar nineteen twenty years
old to start playing music. It's kind of one of
those things that you've been you know, And so I
think he was kind of like, what's going on here?
And when I started writing songs and started dem on
out little songs and stuff when studios, he was kind
of like, Oh, you're actually.

Speaker 3 (20:51):
Pretty good at this.

Speaker 2 (20:52):
So he could hear you actually being he could hear
it talent and work, and he.

Speaker 1 (20:55):
Had some friends that he would send him to and
be like, hey, what do you guys think about this?
I think this is good, but I'm his dad, and
so they were like, it's pretty good. So they were,
you know, they were behind me for it.

Speaker 2 (21:06):
What did you do to make money? From twenty three
to twenty eight twenty nine?

Speaker 1 (21:10):
So I worked full time for my dad who had
a Drowtwall company, So he stayed on with him, hung
and finished sheet rock, and then played the little side gigs,
you know, at bars and whatever. And then when I
was in my late twenties, I joined a band and
we started playing you know Thursday, Friday, Saturday runs, you know.

Speaker 2 (21:28):
All over you know, Arkansas cover band. Original it was original.

Speaker 1 (21:32):
Yeah, It's called Zach Williams and the Reformation, and it
was a Southern rock, classic rock kind of vibe. We
were big Almann Brothers fans and Black Crows and stuff
like that, and so it kind of had a lot
of that feel. And I wrote two records and recorded
two records with that band.

Speaker 2 (21:48):
And did you feel any traction?

Speaker 3 (21:50):

Speaker 1 (21:50):
We I mean we had we played showcases here in
Nashville and things like that. And we had signed a
little booking deal with the company over in Europe and
played too. We played in twenty ten for a month
and then went back in twenty twelve and played We
probably played twenty five shows a month on those two tours.

Speaker 2 (22:08):
And are you guys going so hard?

Speaker 3 (22:10):

Speaker 1 (22:11):
And we were living hard, and I mean then that
was the thing that was that was the thing. You know,
my parents, you know, hated to see because they hadn't
raised me lived that way. And you know, they were
thrilled that I was playing music and so proud that
I was writing songs. But I was living a lifestyle
that I wouldn't raised to live. And I knew it,
and I was you know, I felt a lot of
guilt and shame for that, but I'd got myself into

a place where I didn't know how to how to
get out of it. You know, I was I wanted
to be that guy and I'd created this persona that
I was like, I got to live up to this.

Speaker 3 (22:41):
This is this is what you do when you're a
rock star.

Speaker 2 (22:42):
Do you have any mentor It's a weird question to
ask because I didn't, But did you have any mentors?
At like twenty eight or so. When you're on the road,
anybody could talk to that had done it before to
give you advice.

Speaker 1 (22:52):
I mean, there were some older guys in our hometown
that were musicians that would jump up on stage and
play shows.

Speaker 2 (22:57):
But not like traveling touring. No, see, I think that's
what I think. That's what sucks, you know, in a lot.

Speaker 3 (23:02):
Of times too.

Speaker 1 (23:03):
I mean I talked with my dad a lot, you know,
he was he was, I mean still is like my
best friend. We talked a lot on the job site.
He knew what I was going through. It wasn't like
I wasn't hiding it, you know.

Speaker 2 (23:15):
It's like, I guess my point with that is not
that you didn't have mentors in your life, but professionally speaking,
you were attempting to do something bigger than what anyone
in your immediate.

Speaker 3 (23:27):

Speaker 1 (23:27):
No, right, yeah, I didn't. I didn't have anybody going, hey,
I've I've been there, done that. You showed you this
a little different. Yes, No, I had nothing.

Speaker 2 (23:35):
And if you're just doing that and you're touringru and
again never toured on the level that you have, but
even doing stand up, doing country touring Friday Saturdays, come
back home, I after touring for I don't know, doing
like forty thirty eight shows not I mean you're talking
about over a third of weekends. You get so freaking

bored on the road. I used to go, why would
all these nineties rockers do all these drugs? Yeah? Like
I would be like, why why would they do here?
But you get on the road, there is If you
don't keep something going, you will get run over because
there is nowhere.

Speaker 3 (24:14):
And I think that's what happens with so many people,
you know, and it's easy. It happens easily. Like you're
you're bored. You party because you're bored, and.

Speaker 2 (24:24):
It's such a when you're playing, even if it's just
twenty people, even if it's for nobody, you still feel
like you're building something that's like the rush, the hour,
that's the rush, and you have to meet that with nothing.

Speaker 3 (24:35):
And then you step off.

Speaker 1 (24:36):
Stage and you're just like empty, you're searching you You're
like I want that again, and you don't get it
again into you're on stage, or you go out and
try to party and make it happen.

Speaker 2 (24:46):
And artificially make it.

Speaker 3 (24:48):

Speaker 4 (24:49):
Let's take a quick pause for a message from our
sponsor and we're back on the Bobby Cast.

Speaker 2 (25:05):
Have dealt with a lot of addiction in my family, abuse,
lots of dead people.

Speaker 3 (25:10):
What for you?

Speaker 2 (25:12):
I got two when did you knows? Number one, when
did you know you were just gonna do music? You're
gonna quit your job and you're just gonna really give
it all you have? Because that's vague? And then number two,
when did you know that you were going way too
hard and you had to make a change.

Speaker 3 (25:29):
So the one when I had to make a change
came before when I knew I was going to do
music for a living. So really yeah.

Speaker 1 (25:38):
So in twenty twelve, I was I was getting ready
to leave for Europe for a month, and we had
about twenty two shows maybe booked in Spain, and we
were just focusing on Spain. And around that time, me
and my wife had gotten invited to this church in
her hometown, and uh, we had gone and started going

to this church, and I'd been in I'd just been
in a place already where I was like, man, I
need to do something where I'm going to lose my family.
I had three children, I had a little girl on
the way, and I was getting ready to leave for
Europe with this kind of like new like Okay, I
want to change my life, Like something's got to give here.

I'm tired of being this guy, tired of partying all
the time. And I left to go on that trip,
and my wife basically had come to me and was like, Hey,
if if you can't make some changes for your family,
we're not sticking around anymore. I'm not going to watch this.
You're you're gonna end up killing yourself one day.

Speaker 2 (26:40):
Were the changes the traveling, the touring, or what you
were doing while you're traveling.

Speaker 1 (26:43):
It was what I was doing while I was traveling,
while I was touring, It was bringing it home with me.
It was just it was just the lifestyle that I
was living, and we were we were all sick of it.
I was sick of it, but I didn't know how
to get out of it. And I knew the only
way to get out of it would be to leave
the band and just walk away from it. And so
I literally left to go on that tour. And my

wife tells me this, and I was like just kind
of one of those like foxhole prayers, you know. I
was like, God, if you're real who you say you are.

Speaker 3 (27:15):
Prove it. And I didn't have any doubt that he
was real because I'd grown up at church. I never
doubted that. But I was just like, prove it.

Speaker 1 (27:21):
If you can prove it and it's clear, I'll walk away. Well,
we were two weeks into that tour. We've been partying
every night, and we were driving across Spain one day
on like an eight hour bus ride, and we were
in a sprinter van and I was listening to John
Mayer's Born and Raised album had just come out summer
of twenty twelve, and I was reading Greg Almond's autobiography

Across the Bear, and I was just like reading this
musician that's struggling with his identity and success and lifestyle.
And I was listening to John Mayer's record, and I
was staring out the bus window and my band guys
were all sleeping, and I took my headphones off and
closed my book. I was looking out in the window
the buses we were driving on the highway, and this
guy driving our bus was scanning radio stations up in

the front, and out of nowhere, it stops on the station.
I hear this, this Christian song by a band called
Big Daddy, weave. The song was called Redeemed, and I
listened to these lyrics over and over, and I was like,
what in the world. And I go back to my
hotel look up these lyrics, and while I was listening
to the lyrics, I was just like, hmm, that wasn't

a coincidence, you know. And I was like, and I
just I realized in that moment that I had missed
this thing about God that I'd always gotten wrong. I
just thought, growing up as a kid in church, he
was just sitting on his throne with his arms crossed,
shaking his head, and everything I did wrong all the time,
and I didn't realize how much, you know, how much
God loved me, and that he saw me in a

way I wouldn't ever be able to see myself. And
I called Chris, so I said I'm done. I'm coming home.
I said, just don't tell anybody else. I got another
couple of weeks over here when we get home, and
I said, I'll I'm gonna I'm done. And so I
came finished that run, came home from Europe and canceled
my shows, quit my band Christal.

Speaker 2 (29:06):
What did they say?

Speaker 1 (29:07):
They were not happy? It was not good I mean
because we were, you know, we were. We were as
good as anybody at that time. We were doing shows
of BlackBerry smoking bands like that, and it was like
we could have been easily about to sign a record deal,
and but I was afraid if I didn't get out
of that band.

Speaker 3 (29:23):
I was not gonna make it.

Speaker 1 (29:25):
And so I came home June tenth, twenty twelve. My
wife was getting our kids ready for school. When the
house was clear, everybody was gone, I walked into my closet,
got the shoes up, cleared them out of the floor,
got on my hands and knees, and just said, God,
can you save me? And I said, I'm sick and
tired of being this guy. I don't want to do
this anymore. I don't care if I play music every again.

I just want to be a good husband, good father,
if you can use me, use me. And man, it
was like this weight just instantly lifted, and I was
like and I felt like God was just kind of
in the closet with me, just saying and welcome home.

Speaker 3 (30:00):
And so that was that was where I stopped.

Speaker 1 (30:05):
And so we found a church, started going to this
church in her hometown, and six months into going to church. There,
the worship pastor asked me to lead a song and
I sing Redeem for the first time. And I still
on stage that first time. Yeah, still on stage that
time at church for the first time, singing that song.
And it was the first time that I ever felt

comfortable on stage in my own skin. There was no performance,
there was no look at me, Hey, I can sing good,
look at all the stuff I can do. It was
just this emotional thing that was attached to and I
come home until Christ I said, I think this is
what I'm supposed to be doing. And within the year,
the church asked me to come to work for him
part time and help them launch a campus and become

a worship leader. And so I started leading worship at church,
and I started writing songs, and I was writing Christian
music like new things, but I was still writing them
in kind of my southern country kind of way, and
I was testing them out at church on people woman
playing them, and I was hearing stories from everybody, and
you know, hearing their stories and sharing my stories. And
so I was writing all these kind of like songs

coming out of these places of my life. And I
got invited to Nashville by by a guy named Jonathan
Smith who's a producer here in town and a songwriter.
And he was actually from my hometown.

Speaker 2 (31:20):
How did he find you? How did he know who
you were?

Speaker 1 (31:22):
And so they come over to visit for Christmas in
twenty fifteen and I was singing work, I was singing,
I was leading a Christmas service.

Speaker 2 (31:33):
They came to visit you or the church.

Speaker 1 (31:34):
They came to visit the church because they were Him
and his wife were both from Jonesboro. Her dad was
a deacon at the church. They were just coming to
visit family. They decided to come to the service. They
see this big, tall guy on stage singing and they're like,
who's that guy? We don't know who that guy is.
Jonathan takes me to coffee. He's like, what's your story.
He's like, you don't sing like that without a story.
I tell him my story. He says, well, come over,

won't we come to won't you come to Nashville and
write some music? And so a few months later I
started coming over and staying the weekend with him and
we would write songs. And out of that, out of
that six month time period, we wrote chain Breaker and
here's a Liar and all these songs that became my
first album. And and while all that was going on,

I was still working at the church and the record
label here in town. Sony Provident heard the demo for
chain Breaker and called me and offered me a record
deal off of that demo.

Speaker 2 (32:28):
What do you mean they heard it?

Speaker 3 (32:29):

Speaker 2 (32:29):
How did they get it? Who?

Speaker 1 (32:31):
So I was coming over all the time and they
were seeing me in the offices, the studios were there
that we were writing in, and eventually somebody's like, who's
the Who's the tall guy that's coming over here all
the time that's writing with you? And he's like, oh
this you know this guy Namsact that I'm writing with.
He's the worst leader in Arkansas. You know, just been
writing some music and the a our guy at the label,

was like, let me hear some of the songs. So
he sends them some songs and they flip out over
him and play him for the whole staff. And when
the president of the label heard it, they called me
on on a Wednesday, I was getting ready to lead
a college worship service at church and called me in
said hey, we want to offer your record deal. I
was thirty eight years old, been playing music for twenty

years of my life, trying trying to kick the door
in to get a record deal, and then I finally
had stopped trying to get it and I was just doing.

Speaker 3 (33:22):
What I felt like I was supposed to be doing.

Speaker 2 (33:23):
That's when it came.

Speaker 3 (33:24):
And then it falls in my lap.

Speaker 1 (33:25):
And I'm still working part time at the church, still
hearing people talk about how great these songs are, and
I'm kind of in the back of my mind when
I don't know if I can go out and do
this again, Like, I don't know if I want to
do this.

Speaker 3 (33:35):
I just want to be a songwriter.

Speaker 1 (33:38):
And so I have a meeting and they're like, man, like,
nobody's going to sing these songs the way that you
sing them, So you should probably think about this.

Speaker 2 (33:44):
I don't want to lose my train of thought. But
were you thinking you couldn't do it because or you
shouldn't do it because of your past experience of doing it.

Speaker 1 (33:50):
Yeah, I was just thinking I didn't know if I
wanted to go back and get on the road and tour. Yeah,
And I just didn't I didn't know if I Yeah,
And so yeah, after talk talking about it for a
while and meeting with different people in Nashville, and I
signed my record deal and I was still working at
the church, living in Arkansas, and one of my first
big tours was Chris Tomlin's worship Night in America and

he put me out singing chain Breaker every night and
we were I mean, it was awesome, and I was like,
I might be able to do this and make a living.
And I remember sitting in Florida at a radio programmers
conference with my booking agent, and I was still living
in Arkansas, was on that tour, and I said, man,
I just want to be able to make enough money

to live. Can you guys figure that out? Help me
do that. If we can do that, I'm happy. And
went long after that church I was working at, let
me play a concert. They sent me away with a
big chunk of money to helped me get insurance for
a year and pay my rent, and I left out
and went on tour and it's.

Speaker 3 (34:53):
Been ever since.

Speaker 2 (34:54):
How you like Chris Tomlin?

Speaker 3 (34:56):
He's great. He was a good dude.

Speaker 2 (34:58):
He's like a good dude, right, yeah, he is. He's
just expectant and I know Chris now, but I just
expected him and I mean this in the most complimentary way,
to be so much better than he is, not that
he's going to be a better dude, but I you know,
it's Chris Tomlin. You think he was like better than you, yeah,
you know, or that you know, it's like if you're
talking to him, are you talking to Jesus?

Speaker 3 (35:19):
Yeah, it's like old child.

Speaker 2 (35:21):
Yeahh But he's like like he's just a solid guy. Yeah,
just a solid guy.

Speaker 3 (35:26):
He's a good dude.

Speaker 2 (35:26):
How are those crowds?

Speaker 3 (35:28):
Fourteen fifteen?

Speaker 1 (35:30):
It was like, you know, you get out, you know,
most stuff ever played for my life was maybe five
six hundred people at a at a club, and then
you're standing on stage playing you know, a song that
everybody is singing back to you, and it's like, what
is going on?

Speaker 3 (35:44):
You know?

Speaker 1 (35:44):
I was I was traveling at that time when Schaane
Breaker went number one. I was on a tour singing
two songs and I was an acoustic and that was
all I was doing. And and that song went number one,
and then my second song went number one, and and
uh it was It's pretty surreal because I was like, man,
you know, people hear of you for the first time,

and they think you're like overnight success and they just
don't have any idea of the twenty year grind that
it's taken and what you've gone through. And so that
was a big reason too for writing this book. I
just wanted people to have a little bit of a backstory,
to know why I write what I write, why I'm
the guy that I am now versus where I was
in my past, like, and so it's pretty pretty crazy.

Speaker 2 (36:26):
I feel like the book, even your music, I mean,
I think it's generally pretty personal. I think a lot
of the stuff that you just been pretty personal. Why
looking for You? Why you said that was the most
personal song that you have on this last record, on.

Speaker 3 (36:41):
This last record, it is?

Speaker 1 (36:42):
It's this last record is probably one of my It's
maybe my favorite record I've ever been a part of writing.

Speaker 3 (36:49):
You have to say that, yeah, but I mean that.

Speaker 1 (36:52):
I mean, and it's not been my most successful It's
it's honestly, you know, it's not been as successful as
chain Breaker and Rescue Story.

Speaker 2 (36:59):
That's okay, I mean, I feel like you have. But
you have to feel like your last record is your
favorite because you wrote it the most recent it, Like,
is that a better representation of who you are now?

Speaker 3 (37:06):
I did, but I think I wrote it this time.

Speaker 1 (37:09):
I just wrote the songs I wanted to write, and
I said what I wanted to say, and I produced
them the way I wanted to produce them. I wasn't
trying to make them feel like they had to fit
a format for radio or anything, just like, I want
this to be what I want it to be.

Speaker 3 (37:22):
And so.

Speaker 1 (37:25):
But but looking for You is that that song for
me that's like it just kind of says it. It's
it's you know it it tells the story of the
road that I've been on for so many years and
in my past and what I've gone through, and you know,
I grew up and I kind of said it will
to go. You know, I grew up every night playing
music on stages when I was in the band, smoky

bars and nightclubs, and it was great for two or
three hours while you're on stage, and then you'd step
off and you'd be empty, and you know, drugs, alcohol, relationships,
chasing fortune, famous all that, like what can make that better?
What can make me feel better? And and it did
for a season. You know, it was like and then
that goes away, and and my dad when I was
working for him on the construction site. We would sit

down on these job sites and he would it would
always tell me, he would say, hey, I don't I
don't have an answer for you other than Jesus, like
you need to get your life together. And I didn't
want to hear it at the time, but I knew
he was telling the truth. And I used to hear
this saying as a kid, it's the first place you
find something is always the last place you look for it.
And I was like, I've tried everything else, but Jesus

might as well give it a shot. And and it
was like when I got in that place in my
life and I, you know, I was like, God, can
you help me out? He was there and I realized
all my life I've been looking for him, like all
those things that I've been trying to find, to feel
that hole that was actually in search of him.

Speaker 2 (38:45):
And so.

Speaker 3 (38:47):
Yeah, when I played that song for.

Speaker 2 (38:48):
Dolly, she was like, I was going there next, Yeah, dude,
she was.

Speaker 1 (38:52):
We were in Dollywood working on her Christmas Christmas thing,
and she asked me what I was working on, and
I told her that I told her this record, and
I said, I actually got the title from it from
this song called looking for You. I said, there's a
lyric that says, down one hundred highways of empty pursuit
and a thousand foolish things I went through. Didn't know
it back then, but now I do. I was looking
for You and she's like playing the song, and so
I play it for and she's.

Speaker 2 (39:12):
I mean, is there a little bit of pressure again?
You know, you're good? There was, but it's Dolly.

Speaker 1 (39:18):
It was Dolly, but she was Dolly has a way
of like making you feel like you're the only person
in the room. And she she is so down to
earth and so humble and just so so much fun.
She's like the I've told people she's like the the
fun ant at Christmas that everybody wants to see and
hang out with.

Speaker 3 (39:34):
You know.

Speaker 2 (39:34):
It's like she's very warm and you always feel valued.

Speaker 1 (39:37):
Yeah, And just to even make it even better, that
day while all this was going on, were I was
on a keto diet. A couple of her guys on
crew were on a keto die and she's like, she's like,
you know what we do? She was like, it's really good.
She's like, they got these poor crowns here at Dollywood.
She was like, and I make this blue cheese dip
and we eat poor crands and blue cheese when.

Speaker 3 (39:54):
We're on Keto.

Speaker 1 (39:55):
And I was like, oh yeah, and she's like, yeah,
I'm gonna send somebody out to get the stuff and
i'll make it for you. So she sends somebody out
to get all this stuff and we're sitting there eating
poor grinds and blue cheese dip that she just made,
and and I'm about to play my song. And so
I played the song and she's like coming along harmony
parts and I was like, oh, that's really cool. And
then as the song's finished, and she's like wiping tears

out of her eyes and she slaps me on the
leg and she's like, Zacht. She said, that's beautiful. She
said why didn't you ask me to sing on that one?
And I was like, I didn't know if you'd want to,
and she was like, well, I thought we did pretty
good on the first one. And I was like, you're right,
and I still thought she was joking. And so a
year later, we were trying to decide what we wanted
to do as a you know, a last single on

this record, and I said well, Dollie did say she
would sing on it, and I didn't know if she
really would.

Speaker 2 (40:42):
Yeah, it's a weird thing to follow through. Yeah, like
follow up on it because you're like, yeah, I didn't
know said but again it's you're in like the moment.

Speaker 3 (40:49):
Yeah, and I did.

Speaker 1 (40:51):
We we we reached out to her on like a
Thursday Friday. She said, yeah, send it over Monday. She
sent it back and it was done with her vocals,
like over the weekends.

Speaker 3 (41:00):
She did it.

Speaker 2 (41:02):
What's really cool, first of all is that and that
you have and have have had a relationship with Dollie.
But secondly, you've want a Grammy with Dolly? Yeah, like
that kind of trumps everybody that kind of Trump's stories
of like doing charity work with Dollar, Like you want
a Grammy? Like that's awesome.

Speaker 3 (41:17):
Yeah, it's man, I know it was.

Speaker 2 (41:21):
Does the Grammy have your names on it?

Speaker 3 (41:23):

Speaker 2 (41:23):
So you on your Grammy. It's like in the car.
It has pretty cool man.

Speaker 3 (41:27):

Speaker 1 (41:27):
What was wild though, is that day you know that
we that was nearing COVID. So the Grammys were a
lot different that year, and we had a little Grammy
party at my house and we were supposed to supposed
to have like found out like late in the afternoon
when the when it was going to be announced, and
I had all these people coming over to my house

and we were all gonna be sitting there watching it
at the same time. And then they were like, no,
we're gonna announce it early. So they were going to
announce mind like noon.

Speaker 3 (41:55):
And I was like, oh, man, if we lose this,
this party's gonna say like this is good to be bad.
All these people showing up.

Speaker 1 (42:02):
And when they announced it, they announced Casey Bethard's name first,
and I thought, oh, we freaking lost.

Speaker 3 (42:08):
And now I was like, wait a minute. He wrote
the song with me.

Speaker 1 (42:11):
I was like, we won, like and it was just
like and so I call Casey, Me and Jonathan call
Casey and he's like he's in Florida on the beach
making a sandwich in his beach house and I'm like, hey, dude,
we just want to Grammy and he was like, are
you kidding me? He wasn't even watching it. I was
just like, yeah, that's that sounds a bit like him. Dang,
that's it was really cool.

Speaker 2 (42:31):
It's really cool. It's it's super cool that again, I
would just be my neurosis would go. I know Dolly
said that, but did she really mean it? That's exactly
what I don't want to like bother her because I
already have a good relationship.

Speaker 3 (42:45):
Yeah, I was.

Speaker 1 (42:46):
Yeah, she's been so she's been so sweet to us,
like we we go down and rehearsing her place down
in Lavern, Like it's just she's been like, hey, if
you guys want to come down and use it for rehearsals, Like,
are you serious?

Speaker 2 (42:59):
She's like yeah, wow, she just sent So I have
the these little funkos, which I've only been introduced lately
to the funko culture. Are you familiar with the funko?
I don't know what that is, Mike, will you hand
me the Dollie funk so I have? Again, I didn't
know what they were, but that as like something my
kids might probably athletes have them, celebrities have them. And

so I bought a few Dolli ones and so this
is a Dolly one and I sent them over to
her and she signed them for me, and then I
auction them off for a Saint Joy. I've yeah, yeah, yeah,
but they don't come signed, and Dollie doesn't have any
sign you can get. But I just sent him over
and she sent him back all signed. I mean, it
was like, and I don't want to ask her to
do anything, but I know that if it happens to

do with something like nice or good, she's gonna do it.
Oh yeah, But it's still like, I don't want to
bother her, but she's yeah, No, she's awesome. She's on
my comedy special.

Speaker 3 (43:50):
I mean, that's great.

Speaker 2 (43:51):
It's crazy.

Speaker 1 (43:52):
She was telling me she's got a she was telling
me she's got a Broadway musical coming out in twenty
twenty five.

Speaker 2 (43:58):
I'm sure to be a massive success and it deserves
to be.

Speaker 5 (44:00):
Yeah, the Bobby Cast will be right back. This is
the Bobby Cast.

Speaker 2 (44:15):
You have a bunch of land.

Speaker 3 (44:16):
We've got almost twenty five acres.

Speaker 2 (44:18):
What do you do with it? And is it all
liveable or is it some of it just like no,
So I.

Speaker 1 (44:24):
Guess from the road to our house is about a
quarter mile, and then from our house to the back
of the property is about a quarter mile. And coming
up the road, it's it's been cleared out and it looks,
you know, it looks nice coming up and then there's
about five acres around the.

Speaker 2 (44:37):
House that we have woods woods around, and then behind
it is it's thick.

Speaker 1 (44:42):
I had a guy come in with the excavator and
just cut me a trail all the way around where
we could ride side by side of the four wheaders
and then our property backs up to this creek that
is great for like small mouth bass fishing.

Speaker 2 (44:54):
Yeah, so you stalked upon No, it's.

Speaker 1 (44:57):
It's it's like literally, it's it's wide enough. It looks
like a river where we're at, so you can get
into kayak and fish it, or you can just go
down and fish. It's like, what's this one horse? It's
the creek's called Rutherford Creek, and I'm not sure what
it runs off of.

Speaker 2 (45:12):
You don't have to stock it because it's just no
and it I mean it runs for miles through So
that's basically a river.

Speaker 3 (45:21):
No, it's it's basically like a river, but they call
it Rutherford Creek.

Speaker 2 (45:24):
How old your oldest kid?

Speaker 1 (45:26):
Our oldest is twenty five, twenty fourteen and eleven. They
read the book, I don't know if they've read it
or not.

Speaker 3 (45:35):
They lived it. Yeah, yeah, I mean my I think
my youngest.

Speaker 1 (45:41):
I don't know if my wife has or not, but
we we've talked about playing the audio book for him,
just to let them know we haven't kept secrets. I mean,
our kids know our stories in our lives. So but
the biggest reason why I wanted because I almost didn't
do the audio version.

Speaker 3 (45:59):
I was just so nervous about it. You know, I'm like,
I don't like.

Speaker 1 (46:02):
I'm for one, I don't like to read a lot
unless it's like an article that I'm interested in. Books
typically not, I just don't finish them, do to see
the movie. And then I'm like, reading out loud is
a totally different thing than reading to yourself. And I
was just like, man, I don't want to do this,
and I have myself talked out of it. And then

and my wife talked and I was like, you know,
when I'm dead and gone, this will live forever and
my children and their grandchildren can hear my voice tell
my story. So me and my wife both did the
reading of it.

Speaker 3 (46:35):
I good for you. It was really cool.

Speaker 2 (46:36):
Yeah, I'm glad. It's hard.

Speaker 3 (46:38):
It's tough, man.

Speaker 1 (46:39):
I mean, you have to get this stumbled on words
that you say every day, and you're just like, why
can't I say this right now?

Speaker 3 (46:44):
It's the weirdest thing.

Speaker 2 (46:45):
And also it's like sometimes you'll say a word so
much and like if you just said the word blooney
over and over again, then blowney doesn't feel like a
real word. You like baloonney. But then you come with
all the words while you're reading a book and no
word feels real because you've just been reading. And I
talked for a living, and reading the book was the
weirdest thing because you're also trying to read it like
a human.

Speaker 3 (47:01):
Yeah. I did it every the two nights, the two
days that I read. I would set up every night
and read it to my wife in bed, the chapters
that I was going to read the next day, just
so I would kind of have it fresh.

Speaker 1 (47:13):
Then I would go in and do it, and it
just felt so weird. And then you got this lady
in your ear going try it this way read it, and.

Speaker 2 (47:20):
They would do that to me. I'll be like, but
I don't say it like that.

Speaker 1 (47:23):
There's one part of the book that I tell a
story about me and my dad and it was a
lunch break and I was eating the can of Viiny
sausages and I call him VIENI. A lot of people
say Vienna, and the lady stops me and she's like, hey,
it's Vienna, and I'm like, not where I was, not
where I come from. I was like, I call it Vienie.
I was like, and I'm going to leave it that
way in the book. And so everybody gives no hard time,

but but it was it was a yeah, that's good.

Speaker 2 (47:48):
What about the kid's book? A little more like Jesus?

Speaker 3 (47:51):
So that's that's a that's a book based off of
the Fruits of the Spirit. It's a book that kind
of kind of came out of my song less like Me.
I have a song called uh and that's it's a
little more log Jesus. That's a little less like Me.

Speaker 1 (48:05):
And so this idea for a children's book kind of
came up because I just remember being, you know, in
church as a kid and and reading the Fruits of
the Spirit. So it was kind of one of those
little I think it's from like maybe from four to
eight year olds.

Speaker 2 (48:18):
Did you have to look at a bunch of illustrators
and pick the and and like to pick the style.

Speaker 3 (48:24):
The Yeah, we went through all of that went through.

Speaker 1 (48:27):
I had I pulled a bunch of books from like
the books that we had at home from our kids
that I always remembered like reading them to my kids,
And I sent the screenshots of them in and who
the illustrators were, and then they they were like, Okay,
here's some that kind of resemble that, or here's some
people that we work with. What do you think And
we near down like four people before we went and

found them on we like And then that to me
was kind of cool to'll seend myself as the cartoons.

Speaker 2 (48:52):
Did you have any notes on yourself?

Speaker 3 (48:53):
No, I just I just sent a couple of pictures
over and they came up with that.

Speaker 2 (48:57):
So yeah, I feel like they always air on the
positives I don't have. I don't have your whole books.
I don't know what you look like all your pictures.
But for me, I feel like they gave me some liberty,
some like yeah nice fun they made they feel good,
Yeah liberty. I feel like that's generally what they do.
They don't want to make you feel worse about yourself.

Speaker 3 (49:13):
Now they did a good job. I feel good about it.

Speaker 2 (49:16):
So four to eight is where you put this? I
don't I don't this book. It's not even the real book.
I'm over here.

Speaker 3 (49:22):
Just guessing it's not a real book. That's just the cover.
You have.

Speaker 2 (49:25):
You seen the fully finished, so you don't even have it.

Speaker 1 (49:27):
No, I don't even have it. Like all we have
right now is the cover. I've seen the pages. I've
seen the pages, you know, in like PDF form. But
the book comes out the end of August. Hop on
board for a rolic in journey of sharing and love.

Speaker 2 (49:41):
We're all called to be more like Jesus, but it
can be hard to understand exactly what that means. In
this picture book from acclaimed Christian music artist Zach Williams,
kids joined an exciting bus trip to discover the fruits
of the spirit and learn how showing a little more love, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness,
and self control can make a big difference for those

around them and help them live a little more like Jesus.
With rhymes, It's cool, it turned it turned it really good.

Speaker 3 (50:10):
I'm proud of it.

Speaker 2 (50:11):
I had goals in making mine rymen. I quit, I
quit the Rymen, and I was like, I stopped it.
With rhyming text based on Zach's hit song A Little
Less Like Me and vibrant, engaging illustrations, young readers will
be inspired to connect deeper with God and begin to
grow into the person God created them to be. I'm
excited for the first time you see the full book together.
It's a really it'd be a really cool moment.

Speaker 3 (50:32):

Speaker 2 (50:32):
Just getting this is super cool.

Speaker 3 (50:34):

Speaker 1 (50:34):
And I got it and my manager hands it to
me and I started flipping through it and I was like, dude,
they messed this up. This is not my book. And
he said, oh, no, that's not your book. He's like,
I just they just put it on a thing so
you can see what it looks like.

Speaker 3 (50:45):
Dude, they printed the wrong like they printed it wrong.

Speaker 2 (50:49):
Listen. I'm a big fan. I was a big fan
of just your music before I even knew your story.
You know, I think, how long have you lived here
now in Nashville.

Speaker 3 (50:59):
Oh, we move tier in two thousand and seventeen, so a.

Speaker 2 (51:05):
Year are we four?

Speaker 3 (51:07):

Speaker 2 (51:08):

Speaker 3 (51:08):
Like what years?

Speaker 2 (51:09):

Speaker 3 (51:09):

Speaker 2 (51:10):
Seven years?

Speaker 3 (51:11):
Seven years? Yeah?

Speaker 2 (51:12):
You get here. This is my short version of living
in Nashville. You get here and you're like, wow, this
is Nashville. Our dreams are made. And then you get
really jaded, and then you start to realize, why am
I letting myself be so jaded on stuff. And I'm
getting to the point now where I'm reaching that I
don't need me to be that jaded on stuff anymore.
What I care about I care about, and what I don't,

I just kind of let it do its thing. And
so the version of your story that I knew was
I just knew your music and your current story. Yeah,
because there's a there's a million stories, and I just
hadn't got into yours. But then when I started reading
up on you and learning, and man, it's so admirable
the decisions that you were forced to make to have

a quality life for you and your family then that
you made because I say, Forrest, it's like, you don't
have to actually do it, but if you don't, things
tend to not enda.

Speaker 3 (52:09):
I knew we were always headed in if I had
and that was my that was kind of my It
was tough, trust me, man.

Speaker 1 (52:14):
It was splitting up that band was was awful. Like
I just you know, you've been in a band with
five guys for several years. It was like a it
was like a divorce.

Speaker 2 (52:22):
They still resent you or do they understand?

Speaker 3 (52:26):
I think they are both. I think they there's a
little of both.

Speaker 1 (52:30):
I think they understand obviously when I had to make
those decisions, we're all in a different place in our
lives now.

Speaker 3 (52:36):
I think it still hurts. I mean, it's still it
still hurts me sometimes to think about.

Speaker 2 (52:40):
You know, you just understand why they can be upset though, Yeah.

Speaker 1 (52:44):
Absolutely absolutely, But I mean at the time I walked
away and I was like, I'm not gonna explain why.
I'm just this is for myself and my family and
I need to do this. And I literally put music
down for like six or seven months after I quit.
I was just like, I don't even know if I
want to play music anymore. And then it was when
we were going to the church and that the guy
was like, hey, once you sing a song, and I
was like, it's almost.

Speaker 2 (53:04):
Like you started over. I mean, it is like you
started over, but it's okay, you're done, except we're gonna
kind of put you on level one again. But you're
not doing it for the same reason, but you're doing
it again, you know.

Speaker 3 (53:18):
No, I'm thankful that it didn't happen, you know then,
because like I said, I probably wouldn't be here. But
I do feel like I feel like God allowed me
to live through that and and have that life so
that I could stand on stages now and talk about
what he's done in my life.

Speaker 2 (53:36):
You feel the pressure to sing though, at church every
time now, because if I had your talent and skill
and I was knowing, it would be like being a
singer and being at a wedding. They'd be like, you,
I get up and do a song.

Speaker 3 (53:44):
No, hot, don't man.

Speaker 1 (53:45):
I'm like if I'm like, I just want to be
at church and my family. I don't want to sing.
I don't want to do anything.

Speaker 2 (53:49):
But I'll be looking at you like, are you not
gonna get out there?

Speaker 3 (53:51):
You're not gonna sing?

Speaker 2 (53:53):
What's crazy too, though, is this is a town where
a lot of people are really good. It's a town
where a lot of people are actually great. But still
you can go to church and it's it's almost like
the people singing at church are as good or better
than this. Yeah, it's if you were just to go
to church and go some of these churches here, this
is what Nashville is. People will be blown away because

the singers and the artists that play there are at
times better than a lot of the top tier artists
that play played My shirt.

Speaker 3 (54:22):
Everywhere I remember Eastern Sunday. I was still my wife.
I was like, those girls are really good, like elite level.
They were great. Yeah, man, sound as good as a
lot of the people play here on the radio.

Speaker 2 (54:31):
Yeah no, I mean seriously, like the biggest of the bacomen.
But then you can go down. We'll go down to
you know, church down the road, and they'll and I
tell my wife, this is unbelievable how good they are,
not just like somebody's really good at a bar, but
like elite level stuff. I'm happy for you, man, It's
it's a great story. You make really good music, and

those two have happened to combine to have a like
a really solid career, completely unorthodox way to have it
all happen the way it did. But in the end,
I guess it happened how it's supposed to happen.

Speaker 3 (55:04):
It did. Yeah, I'm glad it did too. Man.

Speaker 2 (55:07):
What do you do for fun?

Speaker 1 (55:08):
I love to cook, That's my second passion. We do
a thing on our tours called it eating or eat,
So I do a VIP dinner before every concert. I
got a shift that travels with me from Napa that
cooks the really nice dinner for everybody every night.

Speaker 2 (55:23):
And so you've heard of Eating View. What is it eating?
Eating View just made it up. When you do an interview,
you cook for people like we not eat while.

Speaker 3 (55:32):
That'd be fun.

Speaker 2 (55:32):
That's what we should have done. Mike should have set
up and Eating View and I eat while I interview
him and he cooks real quick. Yeah.

Speaker 3 (55:40):
I love. I love to cook. I love to do
stuff like that. I like to get out and getting
you know, the Woods, read four Withers and stuff like that.

Speaker 2 (55:47):
So all right, here's IM gonna say you guys, rescue
story from Zach. The Kid's book comes out in August.
And in the pre before you got here, we you know,
talked about the music. But your last record, record came
out in the fall last year, right yet like last
like studio record?

Speaker 3 (56:02):
Yeah, it came out September of twenty three.

Speaker 2 (56:07):
Yeah, last year. Yeah, My years are all messed up.

Speaker 1 (56:09):
Too, mine are I can't remember, honestly, I'm trying to think.
I'm on the third tour of this record.

Speaker 2 (56:15):
So yeah, it was so, I guess my last last
question is are you working on new studio music? I
am with any indication of.

Speaker 3 (56:24):
When it's coming out.

Speaker 2 (56:25):
I mean I'm going to ask that directly because I hate.

Speaker 3 (56:27):
I'm trying to get stuff ready for the Fully Cool.
That's the plan.

Speaker 1 (56:30):
I've actually have a meeting after this song meetings, all right,
go do it picking songs.

Speaker 2 (56:35):
Thanks for coming by, really appreciate it.

Speaker 3 (56:36):
I appreciate it.

Speaker 5 (56:38):
Thanks for listening to a Bobby Cast production
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