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February 19, 2024 69 mins

In this episode, Caroline sits down with her husband Michael Hobby and his “A Thousand Horses” band mates Bill Satcher and Graham Deloach. They discuss the highs and lows of their journey as a band — from the major success of their first single “Smoke” to the roller coaster of going through 4 major label deals in the music industry. They share what they’ve learned from letting others have too much say in the creative process of their music and how they’re calling their own shots now as independent artists. The guys also recount their favorite memories as  a band including playing alongside legends like Darius Rucker, Jason Aldean, and more.

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:10):
Cary Line.

Speaker 2 (00:12):
She's a queen and talking, so.

Speaker 1 (00:17):
She's getting really not.

Speaker 3 (00:18):
Afraid to feed this episode or soul.

Speaker 1 (00:20):
Just let it flow.

Speaker 3 (00:21):
No one can do we quiet. Cary Line is so
care line.

Speaker 4 (00:29):
Well, this is just the thrill of my personal life.

Speaker 2 (00:32):
Hey, hey, yeah, I'm here.

Speaker 4 (00:35):
I got a thousand horses.

Speaker 2 (00:36):
That's it at all of us.

Speaker 4 (00:38):
You know, I got y'all on the podcast when I
first started the podcast. Oh yeah, we're twenty sixteen, and
y'all are like my second guest actually, and that was it.

Speaker 2 (00:48):
That was the hurting moment, the moment that was when
it took printing money.

Speaker 4 (00:55):
And I've just been begging y'all to come back, and
you're like, no, no, no, we can't, or just we
can't have.

Speaker 2 (01:00):
Too much of a great thing.

Speaker 4 (01:01):
Yeah, but this is just great, guys. I'm glad you
have y'all back. A lot's gone down in the past.
How many years? Okay, so we talked, we got together
on the podcast twenty sixteen an hour, eight.

Speaker 1 (01:12):
Years It was two years ago. Eight years. Yeah, musicians,
not really twenty sixteen.

Speaker 3 (01:19):
It does feel like every I'm always like, oh yeah,
that was like two years ago.

Speaker 4 (01:24):
So let's let's like twenty sixteen. That's when like a
thousand horses broke onto the scene. Y'all were like on
a firework, right we.

Speaker 2 (01:32):
Were, Yeah, yeah it rock rocket firework could be a
little yeah fireworks.

Speaker 1 (01:38):
In retrospect, maybe it was a little bit more fireworks. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
You know you're like, oh boom, yeah, yeah, You're like,
oh wait a minute, but then everybody beautiful explosion.

Speaker 3 (01:51):
Yeah, it entertains the man.

Speaker 2 (01:53):
Like you know when everybody takes pictures of fireworks Fourth
of July thinking you're going to look back on you know,
but they just say it was kind of.

Speaker 1 (02:00):
Yeah yeah yeah, and then you wake up. You there's
just a bunch of trash and you're driving right next day.

Speaker 4 (02:04):
Yeah, so y'all really lived the life. Y'all really lived
the life. Okay, so let's start at the beginning back
in it's probably nineteen No, it's probably early too.

Speaker 5 (02:16):
Y'all were born in nineteen eighty seven.

Speaker 1 (02:17):
Right, I was eighty eight eighty eight.

Speaker 4 (02:19):
Yeah, okay, so probably right around nineteen ninety nine. Michael
and Graham you lock eyes in a music store.

Speaker 2 (02:29):
Bill and I are bi.

Speaker 4 (02:30):
Oh yeah, Michael and Bill you lock eyes.

Speaker 2 (02:33):
Well, ninety nine was a great year for rock. Oh yeah,
I think. So what was happening Woodstock ninety nine?

Speaker 3 (02:38):
Yeah it No, it was more like two thousand and two,
I think.

Speaker 5 (02:42):
Okay, So here it is.

Speaker 4 (02:43):
Y'all are in Newberry, South Carolina, population ten thousand, not
a whole lot going on musically, and here y'all find
the one little music store and you see Bill across
a crowded room, and what are your thoughts?

Speaker 2 (02:57):
Well, he was the only kid that was into music
in town that played guitar that I had seen. So
it's kind of like a unicorn in the wild, like you.

Speaker 3 (03:08):
Yeah, I mean it's like I tried forever to get
all of my friends to like learn to play other instruments.

Speaker 5 (03:15):
Like he tried forever. But your teaming.

Speaker 3 (03:17):
It's like I got my first guitar when I was
in the seventh grade and started playing, and I was
like immediately like, oh, we have to start a band.
And when we were in seventh grade, yeah, and I
was like, that's what you have to do. You know.
It's like you can't plase instruments alone. That's boring, ya,
you know, so we uh, I remember, I mean I
had a group of friends and I'd you know, be like, well,

you can start on the bongos, since when I have drums,
I'll play acoustic guitar and bongos. And I was always
trying to like scheme up how to like, you know,
make a band happen, and uh, nobody would commit and
uh except that's when I met Michael, and I was like,
oh wow, another guy in this town that wants to
be a man.

Speaker 2 (03:55):
Well, yeah, commitment is commitment, And so that's what's funny
about that is I was on the way on the
other side of town. I was trying to do the
exact same thing.

Speaker 4 (04:04):
You were putting ads in the paper. You had like
thirty year old women auditioning to be your singer.

Speaker 2 (04:07):
Man. Yeah, I mean we I was trying to get
anybody and everybody to play with and put you know,
flyers up in school and auditioned people at my house
and like the same I had the same problem with Bill.
People would jump in and then they'd quit.

Speaker 4 (04:21):
But y'all are like in seventh grade and they're like
thirty year old's auditioning, right, Yeah? For me, yeah, like
holding auditions yeah hell.

Speaker 2 (04:27):
Yeah, Well I knew what.

Speaker 3 (04:30):
I want is day one.

Speaker 2 (04:31):
Yeah, you know, I had a vision for it, yeah,
you know. And and Bill was the first person I
met that was like, well I'll do it. And I
was like, well, let's do it. And that's how we
started playing music together.

Speaker 4 (04:44):
Y'all are seventh grade?

Speaker 5 (04:45):
What age is that?

Speaker 2 (04:46):
I mean I was eleven or twelve? What's twelve years old?

Speaker 1 (04:49):
I like twelve, maybe thirteen.

Speaker 2 (04:51):
Yeah, I was in seventh grade. Bill was in six Yeah,
but no, but really it was like eighth ninth, like
high school.

Speaker 3 (04:56):
Yeah, it was more like high school, because yeah, we
just knew each other. We just I mean, what we're
saying is is we in middle school. We both started
playing music, but we hadn't met yet, and it was like,
you know, his freshman year of high school was when
we met, actually, because he's a year ahead of me. Yeah,
and so and then it was like pretty immediately we
started like trying to put a band together. And we

did have musicians that were like thirty years old at
the time playing with us, crack eat it up, and so,
you know, we we would we rehearsed all the time
after school, every single day, were.

Speaker 5 (05:29):
All writing round music.

Speaker 1 (05:30):

Speaker 4 (05:31):
Was it good?

Speaker 2 (05:32):
I mean, actually it was pretty good.

Speaker 3 (05:34):
I mean I started writ old people and Mike was
writing songs and I thought they were pretty good.

Speaker 1 (05:38):
Yeah you had and the album made right.

Speaker 4 (05:40):

Speaker 2 (05:41):
I recorded some songs yeah, when I was like fourteen
or fourteen fifteen year which.

Speaker 1 (05:47):
I had that CD and listened to it.

Speaker 4 (05:48):
I was like yeah, and then here comes Graham. So
Graham is Bill's cousin. Ye yeah, and Graham's like, oh, man,
get me in on the action.

Speaker 1 (05:57):
Yeah. So so I'm from Savannah, Georgia, a couple of
hours away from where these guys are. And uh, but
Bill and I, you know, we're seeing each other at Thanksgiving,
We're seeing each other at Christmas, you know, a couple
of times a year. And we're checking in with each
other because he's learning guitar, I'm learning guitar. We're like,
you know, what's been going on? And He's like, I've
got this band going. And so I start coming up
to Newberry basically is like you know, free summer camp,

go stay with unclelad Nan, Nancy and cousin Bill and
hang out. And so I met Michael when I was
like fourteen or thirteen or something like that. Yeah, Like
I could drive okay, and I could not. Yeah, and yeah,
and I was like, oh, like, this is a thing,
and I think we all kind of knew it.

Speaker 2 (06:42):
Well, Graham looked the part.

Speaker 4 (06:43):
You still I mean, Graham, you've killed this thing different.

Speaker 2 (06:46):

Speaker 1 (06:50):
I mean, it's all about consistency. People. You need to
you know, you find your thing, you know, I just
happened to find it, young.

Speaker 4 (06:55):
Okay, find your thing to stick with it, because it
it's hard to find the look out. But I just
think it's kind of amazing that here we are now
twenty plus years later and y'all are still a band,
and y'all have lived one million lifetimes together. Like we said,
y'all been at the top of the rocket ship. You've

crashed and burned, you've built back up. You've had literally
like fantasies come true of rock and roll fantasies. It's
like you've your childhood dreams have come true. And y'all
stayed together for all this time, Like people just don't
stick it out like this. How do you stay? How
have y'all stayed together for twenty years twenty plus?

Speaker 2 (07:39):
That's a great question.

Speaker 1 (07:39):
Yeah, it is a great question.

Speaker 4 (07:41):
How have y'all not want to be like I'm out,
this is exhausting, I need off the ride.

Speaker 5 (07:47):
Well, have you ever had those feelings?

Speaker 2 (07:48):
Well, everybody's feeling this morning every day.

Speaker 1 (07:53):
Actually, yeah, why am I doing this?

Speaker 3 (07:56):
Well, the truth is is that it's been mostly fun. Really,
you know, it's been mostly fun and great and you
know the heartbreak, what's up? Even the heartbreak? Well well yeah,
but I mean that's just part of life. I mean,
it happens. You're gonna, I think you're gonna go through
ups and downs in anything you do. And you know,
all work is hard and everything that you dedicate yourself

to is gonna be hard. So if you're enjoying what
you you know, chose, you know, then great, because you know,
we you could be suffering in a job that you
totally hate, you know. So at the end of the day,
I mean it's like I tell it's like, I'm grateful
that you know that young we knew what we wanted
to do with our lives, right, you know. And and

of course it's hard and crazy and that's what everybody said.
And it's been like good and bad and whatever, but
so is anything. So you know, and it's like, I
don't know, We've had kind of an interesting path as
a band because we've moved here as kids into Nashville,
and because the goal was like I don't want to
go to college. I just got out of my small town.

Speaker 4 (08:58):
You know.

Speaker 3 (08:59):
Our goal then was just like to break away from like,
you know, living in our parents' houses. We just like
wanted freedom and like to just rebel and run. And
I was like, I'll just get a job waiting table.
I just want to pay rent and be someone where
there's music and just go nuts. I can't fathom like
sitting back down in the classroom and going to college
and falling in line doing the whole thing again. And

so that was goal one, was just to get out
and get free, you know, get.

Speaker 4 (09:24):
Out and get free.

Speaker 3 (09:25):
Yeah, and it's fascinating.

Speaker 1 (09:27):
Oh and we did it. Here we are and.

Speaker 3 (09:33):
And it was like, you know, there's been all these
little things along the way that do you know, like
every time I've been like, well maybe it's some to quit,
it's like God pulls us back in and it's like, Okay,
that's what I guess. This is what we're supposed to
be doing, you know. Because we got our first record
deal at twenty Okay, let's.

Speaker 4 (09:48):
Kind of talk about the first record deal though, because
this was exciting we had just started dating.

Speaker 2 (09:53):
Yeah, you were twenty one, twenty one.

Speaker 4 (09:56):
And I was twenty four. I remember this like yesterday.
I was like, oh my god, this is straight out
of almost famous, absolutely, because y'all had like gotten hooked
up with like it's a great term for it here, Yeah, Yeah,
y'all had gotten hooked up with like all these these
like heads of record labels in LA, like Desmond Child
led y'all to Ryan House, that led y'all to freaking

Jeff Saws now and then all of a sudden, you're
showcasing for Jimmy Iveen at the Rainbow.

Speaker 2 (10:25):
Room, No, the Tome Time Santa Monica.

Speaker 4 (10:28):
And like it's like a tiny little club and it's
like all these heads of the labels and Jimmy i Ven,
like the legendary Jimmy Ivien's in there, and he's like
giving y' all the nod like yeah, we'll sign him.
And then it's like y'all had this record deal at
twenty It's like, oh my god, it's happening, like it's happening.

Speaker 5 (10:43):
What are they saying, almost famous?

Speaker 4 (10:44):
I guess it's all happening, happening like it's all happening.

Speaker 1 (10:48):
That was very wild, and then we were before we
knew it, you know. Our A and R guy was like,
can you guys be on a plane on Friday till
LA And I was like, what, headspinning. We move into
a hotel on the Sunset Strip and I'm like, this
is kind of like.

Speaker 2 (11:01):
Yeah, you know, yeah, yeah, the hotel where it was
the Grafton, the Grafton, but it was like across the
street from the Riot House, which is like a famous
rock and roll hotel in Hollywood where Zeppelin stayed, and
like that, we were right there in the in the
thick of what we read about and loved growing up
rock and roll. Oh yeah, without a doubt.

Speaker 3 (11:21):
Yeah, it was like rock and roll fantasy camp.

Speaker 1 (11:22):
And it was a very romantic time.

Speaker 4 (11:25):
All lived out there for like a month, right making
your album with Dave Cobb before Dave Cobb was Dave Cobb.

Speaker 1 (11:30):
Yeah, we met Dave.

Speaker 2 (11:31):
Dave was there the night in town when we got
signed to Interscope by by Jeff sOAZ Now we did.
We met Jeff through Brian House in Desmond Child and
Jeff we went to his hotel room at the Hermitage
hotel and it was still probably like top like most
awkward showcases. You could ever get a bathroom? Well yeah, no, no, no,

he wasn't in a bathroom. Was like, we carry our
guitars upstairs and we walk into a hotel room and
Jeff's like, we'll help yourself to the mini bar, and
we're all nervous. But all there was there I remember,
all there was was like scotch, which none of I
forgot about that I took a little scotch. But Jeff
was like okay, and he just sits in the middle

of his king sized bed and he just says, play
me some songs and we're like okay, and we play
a few songs acoustic, and he goes, well, can you
play for me electric tomorrow night at s ir rehearsal
all here and we're like, well, hell yeah, we can.
We do whatever you want. He said, okay, great, I'll

send you the details and we go into si R.

Speaker 1 (12:43):
The next night he shows up with Dave.

Speaker 2 (12:45):
Cobb and we play one song and he walks straight
up to the front of the stage and says, congratulations,
you're on Interscope Records.

Speaker 4 (12:55):
Did you all die? I mean, this is you had
dreamed of.

Speaker 3 (12:58):
Yeah, I mean literally, I think my face is like
could you now?

Speaker 4 (13:05):
And said, what is it like though that moment? Because
like I like to, I like to like zero in
on little moments. You know, it's like, what is it
like in that moment, not what happens after, because what
happens after is a whole confetti of you know, experiences,
but like the moment that your dream is like happening,
you know. He walks up and says, congratulations, you are

signed to Interscope Records. And getting a record deal was
like the Holy Grail back then, I mean the changed.

Speaker 2 (13:32):
So that was two thousand and nine.

Speaker 4 (13:33):
I think what goes through your brains at twenty one
years old, twenty years old, nineteen.

Speaker 2 (13:38):
Years old, I'll tell you what went through our brains
that night. A bunch of a bunch of vodkas.

Speaker 1 (13:44):
But no, it was it was like it felt magical.
It did. It was everybody was.

Speaker 3 (13:50):
It was like something out of a movie. It really was.
It was like and we were like, I remember, it's
like he said that, and it was like, you know.

Speaker 2 (13:56):
We're like what, Yeah, everything got quiet emotion and then
he said keep playing please, and we probably played ten songs.

Speaker 3 (14:05):
I don't know. I blacked out after that, and he
was like, never.

Speaker 1 (14:08):
Mind a few more songs.

Speaker 2 (14:10):
Actually, yeah, I retract and then we all then we
all went out, you know, and that's when we started
talking to Dave and uh yeah, Dave Cobb. And then
the next week we were in La playing for Jimmy Ivan.

Speaker 4 (14:24):
What is that like now? Jimmy Ivian So he's like
produced Tom Petty's records. He's like the biggest record executive.

Speaker 5 (14:30):
Of all times. He's in all.

Speaker 4 (14:31):
I mean, when we first started dating, we watched the
Tom Petty documentaries. There's a series.

Speaker 1 (14:37):
It was like the band Bible. We all lived in
a band house. You were over there all the time,
and that was just like on repeat. So you're seeing
Jimmy Ivan all the time, talk Tom Petty Records is
in the background of your Yeah, we're in Los Angeles
meeting him.

Speaker 3 (14:50):
I know.

Speaker 4 (14:50):
It's like he manifested this, y'all totally, y'all literally like
we're living the dream in the band house. Tom Petty's
always in the background. Y'all were like it was rock
and roll, Like y'are all smoking SIGs back in the day.

Speaker 1 (15:02):
Oh yeah, this is what you do when you're twenty,
you know, yeah.

Speaker 4 (15:06):
Yeah, and then all of a sudden, now here you
are actually performing for jim Moving and he's saying yes, yeah,
I mean surreal, yeah.

Speaker 3 (15:15):
I mean it was certainly wild. You know. It was like,
I mean, it was a very brief meeting, but it
was still like.

Speaker 2 (15:21):
Yeah, he came in like like Michael Jackson would come in.
Like they were like they put us in a room.
They're like, allright, Jimmy's coming in and you guys have
to stay in here, and no one will no one
can see Jimmy. And we were like okay, and then
we played three songs.

Speaker 3 (15:35):
Yeah, we played three songs.

Speaker 2 (15:36):
Three songs, and then we met him, and I mean,
that was it. What is it like to me to
hero He well, he said to us, this is funny.
He looked at us and he's okay, cool, shake your hands.
He goes, well, now you can say you've played the
Tom Tom Club, not anything else, not like looking forward
to you know, him and his entourage left.

Speaker 3 (15:55):
And then you know what I was thinking, But when
I shook his hand, I was thinking. I wasn't thinking
oh wow, this is the president. I was thinking, holy shit,
this guy produced damned the torpedoes, right, yeah, you know,
you know that's how big a fans we were, you know, like.

Speaker 2 (16:12):
His record and they gave us all beats headphones.

Speaker 5 (16:15):
Are so stoked about the beats headphone.

Speaker 2 (16:16):
Still got them.

Speaker 5 (16:19):

Speaker 4 (16:19):
So as quickly as your dreams came true, they fell apart.

Speaker 1 (16:24):
Yeah, like six months later, six months later.

Speaker 4 (16:27):
That's so fun. It's like the moment of your life.
It's all happening. And then it's like, and now we're
gonna drop all the rock rock because y'all a rock
straight rock. Back then You've always been southern to it,
but it was like straight rock. And then y'all got
the call that y'all got the call dun dundune.

Speaker 5 (16:42):
What was the call?

Speaker 4 (16:44):
Yeah, you go in you recording with Dave Copp living
in LA. You make your album, You make the album.

Speaker 6 (16:50):
Yeah, we made an e the EPA happened.

Speaker 2 (16:53):
And silver Lake and uh, that's where we named the
band A thousand Horses was was it Dave studio there?
We didn't really even have a band name when we.

Speaker 1 (17:00):
Michael Michael asked Dave's neighbor.

Speaker 2 (17:04):
Yeah, so I went out to have a smoke from
the studio and I saw Dave's neighbor taking his trash out,
and I just said, hey, man, what do you think
of the band name A Thousand Horses? And he said
very powerful, very powerful, reminds me of Steve Miller band.
And then he went like this, and I was like, well,
that's it, that's it. So and I went back inside

and I was like, guys, we got an A thousand
Horses and everybody's like perfect, and I told them the story,
which was hysterical, and then here we are, I don't know,
eighteen years later.

Speaker 5 (17:44):
Okay, so you're making the EP.

Speaker 4 (17:46):
You made the EP. Your dream just came true. You
had your own.

Speaker 2 (17:49):
We go on tour like we were pretty reckless.

Speaker 1 (17:52):
Yeah. No, we hadn't went out yet. We hadn't gone out.
The tour was was looked. We got off the Leonard
Skinner cruise. Oh that's right, and we're in a ho
Tell somewhere in Florida, and Michael's like, I just got
a phone them, I got no call call.

Speaker 2 (18:05):
Yeah, it was raining. I'll never forget it.

Speaker 1 (18:07):
Yeah. I remember just like the most sinking feeling, like
oh man.

Speaker 2 (18:11):
But we had like all these tour dates in front
of us, and we weren't making any money. We were
getting like one hundred bucks a.

Speaker 5 (18:16):
Night, so definitely bring all the costs.

Speaker 1 (18:18):
Yeah, for sure.

Speaker 2 (18:20):
We had no no support, no tour support, no anything.
And we we finished the next six months on tour,
and our our agency at the time, our booking agent,
they also kind of bailed out, bailed out, and then
our manager's bailed out.

Speaker 4 (18:33):
Isn't it crazy how everyone's in and then everyone's out.

Speaker 1 (18:36):
That's it?

Speaker 4 (18:36):
Yeah, I mean it's literally like the.

Speaker 2 (18:38):
Entertainment business domino effect.

Speaker 4 (18:40):
It's like you're the hottest thing ever. You got this
team going strong, and then it's like who on.

Speaker 1 (18:45):
Yeah, so everybody pieces out and we got in the
van and we drove from Atlanta, Georgia to Los Angeles
to start a tour, just non stop, just taking shifts, driving.

Speaker 2 (18:55):
And our labels, even though we were off the label,
our label still came to the show opening eye. Well
that was kind yeah, we're talking about awkward.

Speaker 1 (19:04):

Speaker 3 (19:05):
I remember we listened to American Pie like fifty times
in a row.

Speaker 5 (19:10):
Was that healing for you?

Speaker 3 (19:11):
I don't know why, but that was like the song
of the moment as the day the music died.

Speaker 4 (19:16):
What makes sense? What do you feel though, like what
is that like to go and this I think this
is just the start of it all the highest high
to the lowest low and it just happens like that.
What do you feel like now? It's like you just
got it going and now it's just crashed.

Speaker 5 (19:32):
Well what do you go from here?

Speaker 3 (19:33):
Well, what most people would do is they would say,
well that was it, Yeah we're done. Oh not you guys, Yeah,
time to go, you know, learn to be an engineer
or something. We were like, nah, it's time to double
down now. And that's what we did.

Speaker 1 (19:47):
Hambling man. Yeah.

Speaker 3 (19:50):
I figured if we did it once, we could do
it again.

Speaker 1 (19:51):
That's it.

Speaker 4 (19:53):
I'm just trying to see how many times you can
do it. I means that way, that way get major
label deals of your head.

Speaker 3 (20:01):
We have three major deals.

Speaker 4 (20:03):
Oh gosh, okay, So why do you feel though, do
you feel like your life is over?

Speaker 5 (20:08):
Or do you feel like okay, now we just got
to like, well.

Speaker 2 (20:11):
We we you know, our mentality is that like, well,
if we did it once, we can do it again.
I mean we understood the circumstances of what was going on.
That was the thing is we We've always had a
good understanding of the circumstances around it, like it is
business and it had nothing really to do with us
and who we are and creatively and as an artists.
So we just came back home to Nashville and kind

of reapproached the runway and we started writing songs. Like
That's the thing is we we always dive back into
being more creative and like diving back into our art
because that's our expression and that's where we put our
feelings in our emotions when we were disappointed and upset
or angry at things. So we came back home and

did just that and and then started over again, and
that led us to, you know, our next next chapter.

Speaker 3 (21:07):
It did the thing about an antroscope deal that I
guess we've never really talked about or thought about. I
never really appreciated until later in life, was that while
the deal was short and while it you know, it
had so many amazing things happened so quickly. It was like,
you know, it happened. It felt like a movie and

all that was exciting and it was great. But you know,
I had never been on a plane before and it
was like never, so it was like all of a
sudden we were like overnight flying to Los Angeles. You know,
we were in co writes with like the guys from
Blind Melon. You know, people grew up listening to We're
in Vancouver writing and at that at that time, we
had never really co written songs before, and you know,

and you know, we were had We were like tasked,
you know at the time by the guy that signed us.
He was like, right, here's what I need to do.
I want you to write fifty songs. He was like,
I don't give a ship what they're about, what they
sound like. He'said, you need to write fifty songs and
send me fifty songs.

Speaker 1 (22:10):
And so we did.

Speaker 3 (22:12):
And so we were like, okay, cool, we're gonna write
fifty Well, I can't write fifty songs, what do you mean?
But we did. We were writing, you know, sometimes two
three a day, demoing them, you know, like we bought
a pro tools rig and we just like sat down
and started doing it. So it was like, in the
course of while that he was short, we went from like, oh,
we're just a garage band to like, oh shit, we

got a taste, to like really how to do it?

Speaker 4 (22:35):
And you got with Dave Cobb.

Speaker 3 (22:36):
Yeah, and we got with Dave Cobb, and so we
worked with you know, learned a ton from him in
that course of the week. You before, not.

Speaker 1 (22:44):
Like like Dave we had, but this was different.

Speaker 3 (22:48):
Yeah, obviously it's uh the next level up. And so
we we were we go through everything as like we
are just sponges of information and experiences and stuff. And
you know, it's like I live that way now still.
It's like if I'm not learning all the time, I'm
not growing. And the times of my life where I've
like and you know, like where I've kind of lost

the ability to you know, like because of ego or whatever,
to perceive and take in what's happening around me. Is
when you fall off the frequency and everything gets totally
screwed up.

Speaker 4 (23:20):
That is so you and I love it, you know,
and so yes.

Speaker 3 (23:24):
So yeah, like so what kept us going after that
is that we had had all this amazing experience and
we gained all this knowledge really quickly quickly, and we
were like whoa, Okay, I get it. You know, we
were a different band after that. So when we moved
back to Nashville, where you know, there's a great writing
environment and a great writing community, it was like we

kind of knew how to like get to.

Speaker 5 (23:50):
Work at a new level of confidence of who you
guys were.

Speaker 3 (23:53):
Yeah, exactly.

Speaker 4 (23:53):
And you actually, even though you always believed in yourself,
it's like now you had like confirmation like Okay, we're like.

Speaker 1 (23:59):
Oh yeah, and we have more tools to go do
it a better way, you know, in relationships.

Speaker 2 (24:06):
Yeah, you know, like that was one thing that was
great is we had great relationships after that and we
learned and all that, and like Bill said, it gave
us in Graham more tools in our toolbox that we
didn't have before.

Speaker 4 (24:18):
So then y'all are just hustling at hard in Nashville.
And y'all have always had a Southern flair, you know,
like Michael, your cousins are the Black Crows. They're rock
and roll, but they got that soul in them. I mean,
y'all just grew up listening to I mean, I feel
like Tom Petty, Leonard Skinner and who are y'all go to?
It's like the American classic rock and roll, Southern rock
and roll, Like y'all always have been that. And so

instead of just focusing on rock or instead of just
focusing on country, y'allre like we're going to bring all
this together and we're going to do southern rock and
roll in Nashville. And that really was not happening back
in twenty ten.

Speaker 3 (24:53):
No, no at all.

Speaker 4 (24:54):
Really. I feel like it was in the height of
bro Country back then, right.

Speaker 2 (24:56):
Oh well, yeah, that was on its way.

Speaker 5 (24:58):
Okay, Broke Country hadn't even start.

Speaker 2 (25:00):
Now, that was on its way.

Speaker 5 (25:01):
So you guys are.

Speaker 4 (25:02):
Like, Okay, we're going to just like embrace the southern
rock and roll. We're going to get back to our
roots and like do this thing, which was not the trend.
So y'all were kind of like starting something new.

Speaker 2 (25:12):
Yeah, and we we just we kind of just started
writing what we wanted to write and that's where it landed.

Speaker 4 (25:17):
Like we didn't didn't really think it out it well, yeah,
we didn't.

Speaker 2 (25:20):
Like consciously say, okay, guys, change of plans, We're going
to be a southern rock band. No, we just it
was the songs that we were writing in that time
that kind of landed us in that and you know,
the public labeled us what we were in those things.
We we were just writing songs that I guess fit
that narrative and it wasn't anything we were trying to do.

It was what was naturally coming.

Speaker 1 (25:43):
Out of us.

Speaker 4 (25:44):
And then y'all ran into Jimmy Harden and he got
y'all like Jimmy understood the vision, he got the assignment
and was fired up.

Speaker 2 (25:54):
Before that, it was we had, you know, this is
one thing about the band that we bet on ourselves.
So when we came back to Nashville, Dave had moved
Cobb had moved to Nashville, and we didn't have any money,
but we had all these songs and we had confidence.
And we sat with Dave and played him these songs

and Dave was like, I'll record you, which was basically
for free. He said, if you guys can just come
up with enough money to pay my engineer and some
of the players that will have come in. And we
all got on our phones out in his driveway because
we were at his house, calling credit card companies to
if each of us could get, you know, a thousand

dollars line of credit, then we could all throw in
what it would cost to make the record. So we
could not get credit card because we didn't have, you know, jobs,
and we didn't have any credit. So a friend of ours,
a good friend of ours, at Avenue Bank at the
time here in town, who'd become a good buddy. He

offered to give us a line of credit to make
He believed in us, so he said, I can give
you a line of credit for you to make your
record with Dave Cobb. And we took it and it
was just a little bit of money. He said it,
he said, he always says it to me until this day,
still to this day now he's at Pinnacle Bank. But

he said, uh, he said, he said, I knew I
would give you guys enough money that you could sweep
my parking lots and pay me back in a reasonable time.

Speaker 4 (27:25):
Man, have a believer.

Speaker 2 (27:26):
It is just yeah. So we gave it all to
Dave and we made our first debut, real debut album, Southernality.
We made the whole thing ourselves, on your own.

Speaker 4 (27:35):
Oh, you made the whole.

Speaker 2 (27:35):
Album record on our own.

Speaker 1 (27:38):
And uh.

Speaker 2 (27:40):
And our manager at the time, Scott McGee, was playing
golf with Jimmy Harden and he was playing the record
on the golf cart and that's when Jimmy looked at
him and said, who is this and what is this?
And he told us about it, and Jimmy said, well,
this is something I have to do, and.

Speaker 4 (27:59):
We Jimmy was like, he's a die hard rock and
roll of music love yep.

Speaker 2 (28:04):
And we went in and showcased for Big Machine in
their conference room. Second like awkward showcase in a conference
besides the you know, the first one was in a
hotel room and at the Hermitage Hotel, and the second
one was like in a conference room with you know,
twenty people and they were just like, I'll never forget scotboards. Shit.
It was like just right here in front of me,
just staring at us, and there's there's four of us

in the you know, in a tight, tight room, and
uh man, we we we like kind of bombed it lot.
I did well with the first song in I forgot
and I probably nerves because it was a pretty intimidating situation. Yeah,
and uh I had We sang a song called Landslide
that we had written, and I forgot the second verse

and just went right back into the chorus, which the
chorus is the best part. Anyways, it was a light
and yeah you would yeah.

Speaker 3 (28:57):
You didn't know.

Speaker 2 (28:57):
You wouldn't have knowne. But we sounded good when we bombed.

Speaker 4 (29:00):
And that's y'all.

Speaker 5 (29:01):
Specials in the band can survive any situation.

Speaker 2 (29:04):
And the band went with it. And we left there
and we go to dinner with our manager and you know,
we're all just kind of like, well, I don't know,
I don't know if that's going to work out. You know,
great job, fellas, Let's get a margarita. And Jimmy caught
us and said, hey, we're doing it. And we were like.

Speaker 4 (29:20):
You like struggled again.

Speaker 2 (29:21):
Yeah, second major label deal, and how do you feel now?
I mean great?

Speaker 3 (29:27):
We were like, of course, just another one. It's easy,
so you know, we'll take that entire advance and ones.

Speaker 2 (29:40):
You know, we went in. We went into writing mode
even though we had written majority of the record, and
we started writing again before we let up to Jimmy
wanted to redo the record with.

Speaker 4 (29:51):
Dave, so you redid the whole record.

Speaker 2 (29:53):
Yeah, we recut the whole thing and we have another rock.

Speaker 5 (29:55):
And roll experience.

Speaker 4 (29:56):
Y'all, Like y'all have gotten such cool experiences because y'all
rented out Southern Ground Studio and y'all like stayed there morning,
noon and night. Y'all had like home cooked meals. Y'all
have a shift day up till the we.

Speaker 2 (30:08):
Were straight up making like a ninety like it was
like nineties budget.

Speaker 3 (30:12):
There was a chef in there. And first of all,
this is like part of the reason why we joined
a band was to do stuff like this. It was like,
I was like, of course, you'd live in the studio
for a month and you know, we have a cheff.
There's no other way to.

Speaker 2 (30:25):
Do, which was kind of not It was not the
Nashville thing to do, I know, but we were a
real band and Jimmy was like, Nope, we're going to
do this old school.

Speaker 4 (30:35):
Gotta love that.

Speaker 1 (30:36):
Oh yeah.

Speaker 2 (30:36):
We still talk about it to this day.

Speaker 4 (30:40):
That was special. I mean, y'all like lived there. It
was basically like the black hole, and y'all just like
would go in there and just create. And y'all had freedom,
you know. I think that's what's so cool is like
you weren't like confined to like a time frame, like
go in the studio, you have two hours to record this,
get the vocal, get the guitar, get the bass, get whatever,
and then get out. Y'all had time to like explore.

Speaker 2 (31:00):
Yeah, we started every day at two pm. We did
and went till you know whatever.

Speaker 5 (31:04):
It's whenever we wanted to stop wee hours of the morning.

Speaker 3 (31:07):
You know, that was another like learning experience because you know, Dave,
Dave Cobb is the master of the vibe.

Speaker 4 (31:16):
He is, He's such a vibe.

Speaker 3 (31:17):
Yeah, and he's like.

Speaker 4 (31:19):
Anyone listening now he now is Chris Tableton's producer, and
like incredible. I mean he y'all knew he y'all knew
how great Dave was before the world knew.

Speaker 3 (31:27):
He's got so many Grammys. He had to get two mantles. Yeah,
he's just stacked, yes, but he really is. And so
like instead of I would notice in the studios, like
sometimes the days would start slow and be like, well,
what do we do it? And you know, like it
doesn't feel like we get enough work done or whatever,
and then like boom and ten minutes we'd have the
whole song done. Just you can't you get the vocal

done and the guitar and everything, and you know, so,
I mean we got to make a real record. It
wasn't really pieced together and kind of.

Speaker 1 (31:58):
Like done part by part by part and everything.

Speaker 3 (32:02):
It was it was you know, the getting to live
the rock and roll dream again, which again is the
whole reason why we were like, Yeah, we're not gonna
go to college, We're gonna start a band and do this,
but to live the rock and roll dream. So why
wouldn't we?

Speaker 4 (32:13):
Yeah, And so then y'all Smoke comes in last minute.

Speaker 2 (32:17):
Right, Yeah, So that we were still writing up to
the day we started the record, and I had written
Smoke a day before we were supposed to start, and uh,
I sent it to everybody. When when Ross Kopperman sent
me the demo, it was like midnight, I think, and
I just once again for him, Yeah, afford it, forward

it to everybody. And then the next morning, like Bill
called me, Jimmy called me, our manager called me and
was like, this is it. This is the one. And
we went in the next day cut it first and
uh and then started the rest of the record and
it was our first.

Speaker 4 (32:55):
Single and Smoke went off like a rocket. That's another thing. Okay,
So now you've had, like with Interscope, you had the
dream come true, you had their Hollywood moment, you had
the you know, Jimmy iving rock and roll, but it
didn't pan out.

Speaker 5 (33:10):
And then but you learn so much and then you.

Speaker 4 (33:12):
Regroup and then here comes you know, now here's Jimmy
Harnon and y'all have this another rock and roll moment,
and you make this incredible album and now it actually
is panning out because Smoke goes to radio and it flies.

Speaker 1 (33:27):

Speaker 2 (33:27):
I mean the chart it came out of the gate
is like the highest debut of a debut single for
a band in the history of country music.

Speaker 1 (33:35):

Speaker 4 (33:36):
Yeah, so I mean it's like, whoa, Okay, so now
you're getting the results. You're not just getting the dream,
You're actually getting the results. What does that feel like
to get that next part of the dream?

Speaker 2 (33:46):
I mean we were like, well, should I guess this is.

Speaker 1 (33:47):
How it goes?

Speaker 5 (33:50):
Like I knew this is where I was supposed to
be the whole time.

Speaker 1 (33:52):
Yeah, It's like it's insane to think about and it
feels unreal. But also at the same time you feel,
you know, you're like, yeah, this is this is this
was our goal all along, So it feels right. Even
though it feels like a dream come true type thing,
it also feels like, oh yeah, this is Yeah.

Speaker 3 (34:06):
I mean, we had been in town for ten years
already at that point. At that point, you know, and
everybody says National is a ten year town. I mean
twenty fifteen would have been ten years or was, and
so I don't know. I mean, you know, we like
it it. It did. Everything happened so fast that, to

answer your question truthfully, we didn't know what to think.

Speaker 5 (34:31):
And then you immediately are on tour.

Speaker 4 (34:32):
Darius Rucker, y'all have like three backup singer girls like
your production on STO.

Speaker 2 (34:37):
We took a big band.

Speaker 4 (34:38):
Y'all were immediately like it was a massive show.

Speaker 2 (34:41):
Well that, you know, that was like part of the
vision and Jimmy he wanted that vision. So that's how
we were able to do that. You know, early on
a lot of people asked us those questions like how
are y'all doing this?

Speaker 5 (34:52):
And I was like, well, Jimmy believed.

Speaker 2 (34:54):
And yeah he believed, and we had a song, you know,
the chart, and we were on on fire at that point.
You know, we're out with Darius for a year, and
then right after that we rolled into the Jason Alden
tour with him, and then right after that we rolled
into the Kid Rock tour with him, and we were
pretty much just non stop.

Speaker 4 (35:16):
And now you're touring with like legends. What is it like, so,
Darius Rucker, what is it like to tour with Darius Rucker.
What did you take away from that experience other than
your boots?

Speaker 5 (35:26):
Did you get this from Darius.

Speaker 1 (35:27):
Not these particular ago those boots have.

Speaker 4 (35:31):
Been like for some reason, Darius always gave you boots.

Speaker 1 (35:37):
Yeah, he he Well, Darius is an incredibly generous guy.
So I think that from that tour, I think we
all learned, like, dude, always be nice to people, always
consider people. He's one of the nicest, most considerate people.

Speaker 4 (35:51):

Speaker 1 (35:52):
The dude's a double rock star. He could do whatever
he wants, and he chooses to always take the time,
always like you know, reach out. And I think that
for us as really young and all of it happened
at once. He was a great guy to be around
to kind of just show you like how to exists
in that time when we didn't it was all happening

so fast. Like Bill said, you know, our head was
kind of spinning and we were all just like okay, like.

Speaker 4 (36:17):
A humble dude, so humble he'd been there, you know, yeah,
like on top of the world with hooting and the blowfish.
Then he reinvents himself as Darius Rutcker and country music.
I mean exactly, he's seen it all.

Speaker 2 (36:29):
Yeah, he was great to tour with.

Speaker 1 (36:31):
That was it.

Speaker 2 (36:31):
That was a good tour to be on, like right,
to be thrown in.

Speaker 4 (36:34):
He really took you under his wing. I feel like
like he really he mentored you guys.

Speaker 1 (36:39):
He did. He was your first podcast.

Speaker 4 (36:40):
It was my very first podcast.

Speaker 1 (36:42):
He is like such a cool dude. He is.

Speaker 4 (36:45):
He's a generous guy. He's generous with himself too, with
his timely Yeah, totally okay. So then comes Jason Addine
and what was that like? That tour was like on fire?
How was that to go straight from Darius Red into
Jason Audine? What'd you take away from the Jason Audine tour?

Speaker 1 (37:03):

Speaker 2 (37:04):
I mean that we were fans of Jason Aldeen, you
know that, you know growing up, So it was a
I mean that was an unreal experience. I mean, right,
we were just going from arena to arena, to Amphitheater
to Amphitheater, and you know, those guys took us under
their wing too, you know that. That's the beauty of it.
We've been fortunate with the people that we've toured with

is you know, they take you under their wing and
you become friends and you're living together for a year
and and show us the ropes and give you advice
and help you kind of guide through it because it's
a lot to process. You know, you think you're ready
for it because you've dreamed of it your whole life
and that's what you've been fighting for.

Speaker 1 (37:45):
But once you.

Speaker 2 (37:45):
Get it, it's nothing like you expect, and there's a
lot of adjustments and a lot of learning you have
to do in the middle of it.

Speaker 5 (38:02):
What's not expected, well, I.

Speaker 2 (38:06):
Think just like the demand of time, like the pressure
of it all. You know, when you do have that
kind of success, like the pressure to keep it, there's
a lot of people bring them.

Speaker 1 (38:15):
Down your throat.

Speaker 2 (38:16):
There's a lot of pressure.

Speaker 4 (38:17):
Creatively, there's a pressure to keep it.

Speaker 2 (38:19):
That's what people do well, and you know you're judged
on it.

Speaker 3 (38:23):
And all of a sudden, there everyone around you has
an opinion, and their opinion is the most important one.

Speaker 4 (38:31):
It is where it used to be you guys sitting
in your studio, your room, your band house, just making
music because you loved it. Now all of a sudden,
it's turning into a money maker. And so now all
these people are like, Okay, we have opinions about this
because this is we're putting our money into it, so
like you kind of start losing grip of just the

actual love of the creativity.

Speaker 1 (38:55):
Yes, you have to make sure they're still making it
for the right reason and not because you have to
hit a certain number or a certain mark on a
chart or something like that. So it does become challenging.

Speaker 2 (39:08):
It it takes it from a creative artistic side of
things to an analytical metrics side of things.

Speaker 4 (39:15):
Do you feel like you guys got lost in that?

Speaker 2 (39:18):
Yeah, I mean, without doubt absolutely what happened?

Speaker 4 (39:21):
When did y'all when did the confusion start to happen?

Speaker 3 (39:23):
Well, okay, put it this way. So when we wrote Sonality.

Speaker 4 (39:27):
That was your debut album, their debut.

Speaker 3 (39:29):
Album, it was written in our houses for the most part,
you know. You know, half that record we wrote which
just us, you know, and there were there were co
writes on it for sure, but no pressure. But yeah,
it was like no pressure and a lot of it
was like we're writing it out of fun discovery. You know,
these are the best songs we've done at a time.

Speaker 4 (39:51):
And they are truly like from your heart.

Speaker 3 (39:53):
Yeah, and then you know, and when we made the record,
we didn't have to play it for anybody or get
anybody's approval. You know, there wasn't you know, there wasn't.
There wasn't. There was no like bureaucratic, you know, sort
of situation around it. It was like it was like,
these are the songs we love, you know, and the

camp that made that record was pretty small, and then
all of a sudden, you get a big hit and
you're writing songs, and all of a sudden, the question is,
all of a sudden, twenty people are weighing in, Oh,
that's not hid enough, that's not hidden enough, that's not enough,
that's not hideo, where's the bass?

Speaker 1 (40:27):
It's the base.

Speaker 3 (40:27):
I'm like, this is a flipping demo, Like, can we
not talk about what the bass sounds like? That is
not important right now.

Speaker 6 (40:33):
We need to get to the no, no, no, no,
we need this, And then there's that, and so we
leave the room going, well, ship, you know, okay, guess
I'll go write a hit whatever that means, yeah it is,
you know, and then that'll drive you nuts.

Speaker 4 (40:46):
So then you start losing the clarity of what's in
your heart and you're trying to like chase a hit, right,
but what got you there? Was what was in your heart?

Speaker 2 (40:56):
Absolutely well, you just like Bill's fi, there's just a
lot of pressure and a lot of opinions, and.

Speaker 4 (41:01):
When you're that young, you don't even know how to
filter it through. So you're like, well, right, they know
better than me. I guess I need to do what
they say.

Speaker 2 (41:07):
You know, it's you kind of sometimes lose the you.
You lose power in the say so of a of
a song that you've written, because there's a committee of
people that have to decide they feel the same way
about it, and if they don't feel the same way
about it, then it just goes away and you have
to go do it again. And yeah, and I think
that's where artists get lost, And that's where you can

get very lost, because it's it's kind of a you're
playing a game with it, and and you're trying to
just churn out you know, it's got to sound hittye,
it's got to be hittie, and you're chasing there. You know,
everybody's chasing a trend or whatever's hot at the moment.
And and and then instead of letting them music lead. Well, yeah, it's.

Speaker 1 (41:47):
An interesting effect that happens that exactly what you're talking
about when you start to you're not thinking about how
can you be the most creative or you're chasing something,
and you start to service like the music industry more
than you do like yourself or the fans, the people
that actually listen to the music. And that's part of
that whole.

Speaker 4 (42:06):
Process and the truth of why you're writing songs, right,
why you started to.

Speaker 1 (42:09):
Beg Yeah, you're like, oh, well, somebody's somebody's asses on
the line financially or whatever, so you have a fulfillment essentially, you.

Speaker 2 (42:17):
Know, Yeah, it's yeah, you're not making money back fast enough,
you're spending too much. It's like, these are conversations that
we had that were like, well, I don't know. I mean,
I'm not controlling the check book here. I mean, we're
just playing.

Speaker 4 (42:28):
And then everybody starts to get stressed when it starts.

Speaker 2 (42:30):
To oh yeah, the whole camp gets stressed.

Speaker 4 (42:32):
But then what happens when it goes from like so
y'a are like highest, highest, highest, to like how did
the stress even start coming?

Speaker 2 (42:39):
In our second single.

Speaker 4 (42:41):
Things were great, y'all ha a ton of apps.

Speaker 2 (42:43):
But that's the thing. In any kind of term of great, yeah,
people would feel that way, but not the team of people.
You know, it didn't do good enough.

Speaker 4 (42:51):
So then they pulled it early, pulled it.

Speaker 2 (42:53):
Early, and then we went back to the drawing board.

Speaker 4 (42:56):
Uh that's called drunk dial. Yeah, yeah, they drunk out,
so they pull drunk doll. Like y'all had like seventy
nine ads, which is like a ton of ads. There's
only like one hundred and thirty.

Speaker 2 (43:05):
I mean, yeah, we were at like nineteen and nineteen weeks.

Speaker 5 (43:08):
I don't know how that's not climbing the charts fast enough.

Speaker 2 (43:10):
Well, that's where you start hearing about research it and
great and this isn't great, and all these terms that
like artists are like what do you mean you know?

Speaker 4 (43:17):
In research? Now it's so funny because we live in
such a different world, like the research that they are
now now, it's everything is completely different than the research
are doing now.

Speaker 2 (43:24):

Speaker 4 (43:24):
Research is how much, how much are you streaming? How
many tickets are you selling? Right back then, what was
the research.

Speaker 2 (43:30):
Just radio research? I guess at the Yeah.

Speaker 4 (43:32):
We're wanted to hear it on the radio.

Speaker 2 (43:34):
No one knows, no one knows, you know, we researched,
so like once that happened, then like it was the
it was chase, the chase was on for a hit,
or the chase was on, like the pressure and now
you're stressing, and now we're stressing. And you know they
released another single off that record after that was Southernality

came out after that, which just you know, by that
point we could see the the down downward spiral from
like the team.

Speaker 4 (44:07):
Isn't it crazy that it's like you start off on
a rocket ship, highest debuting band in country music of
all times? Smoke is like through the roofs, like everything's going,
and then just as fast as it's going, it just
starts to go down. Like it's just crazy to me
how the highs are so high and then the lows
are just word well, And.

Speaker 2 (44:24):
That's when it got into like I think a lot
of times in the industry and with artists, like the
answer is, well, if that's not working, change everything, Yeah,
And that's where we got caught is they changed everything.
We changed producers, we changed like everything about what we
did to get to the place that we were, And
that's where we got lost. And we did get to

work with some incredible people and learn a lot of
incredible things, but we lost the plot. Yes, you know,
and when you're not in control of the plot is
an artist because you're not the person who writes the check.
You know, you're you're owned in a label deal like that,
Like you're you're the minority of ownership and what you do.

So that's where things really started to get tense and
like fights kind of started to happen, and like not
knowing what to do started to happen. And then you know,
our second EP after our debut record debuted number two
on the Billboard charts the day it came out, and
we had this huge hit smoke off of it. The
second thing that was ever released for us was a

unfinished EP that we had been tossed back and forth
in between producers to make.

Speaker 4 (45:37):
What was that?

Speaker 2 (45:37):
It was The Bridge's EP, which had some great songs
on it.

Speaker 4 (45:41):
But it was just like thrown around.

Speaker 2 (45:43):
Well, we didn't know that it was really coming out.

Speaker 4 (45:46):
So that's another thing you just got surprised, like, oh surprise.

Speaker 2 (45:50):
Yeah, It's like I got an alert on a Google Instagram.

Speaker 1 (45:54):
I saw like a thousand Horses releases new EP, and like,
what we released an EP today?

Speaker 4 (45:59):
Do you even know what the EP was?

Speaker 2 (46:01):
I mean, you know, we knew the songs. I mean
it was like in conversation, but it just happened.

Speaker 5 (46:05):
How can that happen without y'all knowing.

Speaker 2 (46:07):
Because we're not in charge. That's what people don't understand about,
Like that a label situation. You are the minority ownership
in your art.

Speaker 4 (46:15):
How did that make you feel when you found out
that your second EP was being released?

Speaker 2 (46:20):
It didn't feel great, No, it did not, and but
we you know, you got to make the best of
the situation that you have. We took a positive attitude
on it. We were on tour, we were working really
hard on tour.

Speaker 5 (46:30):
Who were on tour with I mean.

Speaker 2 (46:32):
That was a twenty seventeen or eighteen when that comes out.

Speaker 4 (46:34):
I think we were just kid.

Speaker 3 (46:36):
We're just kind of out doing our own thing.

Speaker 2 (46:37):
Yeah, kind of out doing our own thing. And you know,
that was like the beginning of the end, you know,
like do.

Speaker 5 (46:46):
You feel it?

Speaker 2 (46:47):
Oh yeah, yeah, I think.

Speaker 4 (46:49):
Didn't feel like confusion chaos.

Speaker 1 (46:51):
Like when you're middle school, girlfriends were talking to you
and you're like, we're start you start to notice that,
you start to notice things.

Speaker 2 (46:58):
You know, We're like, you're people that you've been with
every day. Stopped coming to shows or stopped coming around.

Speaker 4 (47:04):
Don't text you back as fast.

Speaker 2 (47:06):
Yeah, and it's it's just like a relationship and you.

Speaker 5 (47:08):
Know, storry getting a little more distant.

Speaker 2 (47:10):
Yeah, or they got a new hot act that they're
on to next. Yeah, and you start to realize like, okay,
well all right here we are.

Speaker 4 (47:21):
How does that feel that has to I mean, that
has to be a lot of feelings.

Speaker 2 (47:25):
Well, I mean, yeah, it's pretty crushing, you know. I
mean it definitely was something that was frustrated because we've
just felt like we were finally just getting going. Yeah,
you know, in a big way, we got going, and
and then just the rug pulled out from underneath you
when you know, there was no rhyme or reason for
it besides maybe a financial thing that you didn't have

anything to do with in the first place.

Speaker 1 (47:49):

Speaker 3 (47:49):
I think the most I think the most frustrating thing too,
is like when you're putting into a position with you know,
we have like when you're under that pressure to deliver
the next hit you know stuff, and you're under you
basically have a gun to your head of like, you know,
be creative and do it this way, and we need
to hit and blah blah blah. You you know, it's

not a good place to be as an artist anyways.
And then at the end of the day, as the artist,
you're the one that has to own the failure.

Speaker 4 (48:18):
So then if you're doing something for someone else and
it fails, you're you're for someone else.

Speaker 3 (48:23):
Yeah, you're forced to do things you don't want to
do as an artist, and then it fails, and you're
life it fails, and then it's your fault.

Speaker 4 (48:29):
And then you have this Maybe you recorded music or
songs that like you wouldn't have put out there and
you're like, I didn't even want to do that.

Speaker 3 (48:35):
Or they weren't ready, yeah, you know, and it was like,
you know, that's the thing. Here's the thing about being
an artist is and and I didn't understand this young enough.
So so if I say this and somebody goes, oh
that helps me, then great, hopefully it will.

Speaker 1 (48:48):
But like.

Speaker 3 (48:50):
You have to like paint your artistic vision basically to
completion all the time, and do not waiver.

Speaker 5 (49:00):
On it, and do not let anybody tell you, do
not let anybody.

Speaker 3 (49:02):
Do not take early opinions on it.

Speaker 5 (49:04):
Do not take opinions, Do not take.

Speaker 3 (49:06):
Early opinions on it. No, do not, you know, waiver
from it. I don't know when whatever it is, finish
it and then present it. Because there's a reason why
you're the artist and somebody is the manager or somebody's
the promoter or somebody's this or whatever.

Speaker 4 (49:25):
So you have to have that's not one I'm solid in.

Speaker 3 (49:27):
Your You're the artist. It's up to you. It's your
creative responsibility.

Speaker 5 (49:31):
So would you feel like to go, this is.

Speaker 3 (49:33):
The thing and because that's the way you're going to
get the best results.

Speaker 4 (49:36):
Do you feel like that's for the art and one
of the biggest takeaways that y'all got, Well.

Speaker 3 (49:42):
I mean, you know it's certainly it's something we knew,
but I mean it's something you know, like yeah, I mean, now,
I definitely you know we understand that. You know, people
talk about creative freedom all the time, and well, you know,
like what creative This is actually creative responsibility. But if you

don't how to exercise your creative responsibility properly, then you
get lost. So you have a creative responsibility for yourself
as an artist to go all right, this is my painting,
my creation, this is my vision. It's clear as day
there's nothing vague or ambiguous or whatever about it. This
is it take it or leave it, Take it or
leave it.

Speaker 4 (50:21):
That is the art, and you have to be willing
to let people leave you, but stay with your art,
right yeah.

Speaker 2 (50:26):
I mean, yeah, that's really what you have left at
the end of the day.

Speaker 4 (50:28):
Because at the end of the day, y'all have tried
the conforming and changing to fit and then it's still
you still ultimately, you know, fall art. So it's like
now you're I feel like now you guys are more
solid than y'all have ever been, which is crazy because
you'll have been on this journey for twenty years. But
it's like y'all have learned so much, Like these lessons

that y'all have learned have been like huge life lessons
that you've actually like lived through to learn them. You know.

Speaker 2 (50:57):
Well yeah, and you know it's like we're not like,
you know, I don't want to paint the label industry
side of things in a bad light, like it's a business.
It's a business, and we understand that, but there's there's
there's there's an art to understanding that that also comes
into play that you don't ever expect, you know, and
that's where mentors like Darius or Jason or and other

friends of the business can help younger artists kind of
learn like, hey man, this is kind of how you know,
because there is a way it works, there is a
system to it, and and you know, it changed our life.

Speaker 1 (51:30):
You know, That's what I'm saying.

Speaker 2 (51:31):
Everything's when it's great, it's great, and everybody's happy, and
everybody's doing good and you're loving your situation. And then
when it when it goes into the negative side of things,
is when people start to, you know, get mad and like,
what's your fault? It's your fault. And we never blamed
anybody for anything that ever happened to us. You know,
we were a part of the decisions and the circumstances
that led to what, you know, the business considers failure,

you know, which we consider, you know, just part of
being an artist, the high and loads of it. So
it just it's a it's a roller coaster.

Speaker 4 (52:07):
It's a roller coaster. You have to be a certain
kind of person to be able to hang on to
this ride.

Speaker 2 (52:10):
Yeah, and we're grateful for the opportunity that we had
there at that time, you know, just because it went sour,
and you know, they were generous enough to you know,
that's another thing too, on the on the other side
of like relationships and and your attitude towards these situations
is very important.

Speaker 4 (52:23):
I've always had a good attitude. Never burned any bridges,
is they were.

Speaker 2 (52:26):
They allowed us to leave very peacefully and very quickly,
which a lot of artists don't get that opportunity. They
just stick them right on a shelf and then they
can't do anything and they're stuck. Then they're stuck. And
so we didn't get held up. We got derailed, but
we didn't get held up.

Speaker 4 (52:44):
So then what happens. So now you're back on your own.
So this huge, this huge rocket ship again has happened.

Speaker 1 (52:49):
You had.

Speaker 4 (52:50):
Now you've got the success with Smoke and all these
big tours and rock and roll live in the dream
like for real, for real. But now here we are again,
back back alone again.

Speaker 1 (53:02):

Speaker 2 (53:02):
Well, we did what we did. We did what we
always do. We we dove into being creative and we
you know, we had a little bit bigger of a
budget now at this point, so we called Dave Cobb
and said let's make a record.

Speaker 4 (53:14):
So to go back to Dave, here comes day.

Speaker 2 (53:16):
So no ship, Like, we went back to Andy.

Speaker 4 (53:19):
And Pinnacle Bank and got another lot. It's like history
repeating itself, I did. Yeah, y'all have done a.

Speaker 5 (53:26):
Lot of history repeating itself.

Speaker 1 (53:27):
And I don't know, maybe it's just consistency.

Speaker 2 (53:35):
Well, and it's betting on yourself.

Speaker 4 (53:37):

Speaker 2 (53:37):
So, and we had a lot, you know, we had
momentum at that point, so we went back in with
Dave to make what would have been our second record.
I mean, we were all over the place because it
was still we were still in it, like an emotional
roller coaster of feelings and things that were going on
and everything in life that was happening. But we went
back into the studio and started making a record. And

then after two days in the studio with Dave, he said, well, hey,
you guys want another record?

Speaker 1 (54:08):

Speaker 4 (54:09):
Like sure?

Speaker 2 (54:11):
And uh because he had his Low Country sound through
Electra in New York and we're like, well, yeah, we'll
take a look at it. That was another thing then
at that point where like, well let's see what it
looks like. You know, we just got out of this
other relationship, so let's see what this looks like.

Speaker 4 (54:25):
Yeah, it just got divorced, and it was a very
intense relationship. I don't know if I'm quite ready to
like jump back in, but let's see.

Speaker 2 (54:31):
Yeah, and ended up, you know, signing a deal with
Electra out of New York And how is that?

Speaker 1 (54:39):
You know?

Speaker 2 (54:39):
It once again started off great. Yeah, you know, and
that was at the tail end.

Speaker 4 (54:46):
Y'all. Are you all exhausted? I mean, I mean I
have lived side by side with you all this whole journey,
and like, I know how I have felt it. Yeah,
I didn't break down the other day and I'm like,
I just can't do the music industry anymore.

Speaker 2 (54:57):

Speaker 4 (54:57):
Yeah, it's so exhausted.

Speaker 2 (54:58):
It's not for the faint of heart, you know.

Speaker 3 (55:00):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. The word record deal at this point,
it is like I'm like.

Speaker 1 (55:14):
Yeah, yeah, old on.

Speaker 2 (55:18):
Was that well? So you know that happened, and that
was kind of like the tail end of twenty nineteen,
and we were geared up for twenty twenty and we
all know what happened in twenty twenty, you know, we
what happened to the world, and like that was it
where everybody was stuck home. We couldn't tour, we couldn't

really release anything, and because everybody was like, well, we
got to see how this pans out in the world. First,
we got to see what happens, so we're gonna you know,
everybody pulled back their thrusters and just kind of put
everything on cruise control. And you know, within I don't know,
eight months, nine months or maybe a year, I guess

in twenty twenty, you know, we we decided to part
ways with Electra.

Speaker 5 (56:06):
So nothing really even happened with Electro no.

Speaker 2 (56:09):
I mean, they had big you know, this is like
corporate changes, company policies and things, things that we have
no control.

Speaker 3 (56:15):
Have no controller took it.

Speaker 2 (56:16):
They pivoted, they pivoted, and we you know, they were
very generous and we got out of that deal. But
you know, it hung us up for a year getting
getting every longer than that, it was kind of like
two years. It was like a two year holding pattern.

Speaker 3 (56:31):
Holding pattern, yeah, which was weird.

Speaker 1 (56:33):
But well, I mean, think about the album Broken Heartland.
We made it what at the end of twenty eighteen,
November of twenty and eighteen, and it ended up being
released in what unchill August of twenty twenty two September
twenty twenty eight So it was a really long. It
took a really long time to get that album out,
from the conception to going things.

Speaker 2 (56:55):
We still ended up releasing that record on our own. Yeah,
because the album got released Electra, you know, we we
got it back and and then we were like, okay,
so well we got our record back, so I guess
we'll just put it out. So we put it out
ourselves independently, and the world was still kind of waking
back up from this from the shutdown, and there wasn't

a lot of touring on the books, but we needed
to get it out, and man, yeah we Yeah, that.

Speaker 1 (57:25):
One took a little bit longer that way. That was
the process.

Speaker 2 (57:27):
By the time that record came out, we we'd already
we were over it.

Speaker 1 (57:31):
Yeah, the whole album.

Speaker 4 (57:32):

Speaker 2 (57:32):
I think at that point we already started working on
the next.

Speaker 4 (57:34):
Then. Is that when you got with John Randall?

Speaker 3 (57:36):
Yeah, we just finished this. Yeah, yeah, I started working
on this new album we have now we're releasing.

Speaker 4 (57:41):
Okay in this new album, So I mean, what a
freaking ride. And and and also I mean there's been
manager changes. There's just been y'all have just had.

Speaker 3 (57:49):
Can we pause for tuesdays?

Speaker 4 (57:50):

Speaker 3 (57:50):
Is it possible.

Speaker 4 (57:53):
Okay, but I need we need to wrap up in
like ten minutes. Okay, you just told it.

Speaker 1 (57:57):
Okay, we're definitely gonna leave that.

Speaker 4 (58:00):
Yeah, yeah, just hold your peak. Y'all pee more than
anybody I've ever known. Do you pee as much as Michael?

Speaker 1 (58:05):
I don't think I do.

Speaker 2 (58:06):
I gotta Yeah, I'm good.

Speaker 4 (58:12):
Tax you just drink all the time. You have a
beverage in your hand.

Speaker 5 (58:15):
At all the time.

Speaker 2 (58:15):
I'm a constant consumer of liquid.

Speaker 4 (58:19):
Okay. So, y'all just had so many big emotional highs
and lows like high as high, low as low, changing managers,
changing labels. It's just been a lot. So here you
are now, y'all get this amazing idea to collaborate with
John Randall that y'all just did this, and y'all just
made a new album. And to me, like, I love

all y'all's music, but this album, to me, is so vulnerable.
It's so honest. Y'all are talking about like some heavy stuff,
like some real things that have gone on in your life,
like you know, no news just came out, and I
feel like that's a deeply personal you know, like all

y'all have gone through so much, but you in particular,
like your dad passed away. You know, I feel like
there's like a few things that just happened. COVID your
dad passed away. It's just like, yeah, Crake White and
he had just come off of his stroke. You know,
It's like, man, no news is good news these days.

Speaker 2 (59:20):
Yeah, no news is good news these days. I mean,
there's a lot of art in this record. There's a
lot of expression and a lot of real life emotion
in the body of work that we created. And you know,
this record was, you know, the first record in a
long time where it was just us in John Randall,
Like there was no outside influence from a manager or

a label situation or any pressure for like, well, we
got to make sure we have two or three singles
on it, we got to have such and such as
his name on it, and all these things. It was
just us going in and making music that we wanted
to make and how we wanted it to sound with
with with John, you know, guiding the ship with his
talent and creativity, and we had more fun making it

than we ever have because we were just doing what
we did from the day one when we made our
first record, and so on and so forth. And we
bet on ourselves again, and we just you got to
keep stepping up to bat in this business, and you
got to keep moving the chains, as my father in
law always says, father in law, Yeah, I do in life.

And it was just truly only influenced by us and
what we thought we wanted to do and what John
felt like was great, and we were allowed to be
a band again.

Speaker 4 (01:00:38):
Y'all have just been a band. Y'all have just been
a band. Talk about being just like thick and three
thick and what is it?

Speaker 5 (01:00:47):
Yeah, And then I mean it's really beautiful.

Speaker 4 (01:00:50):
Like when I look at you, guys, I've had a
front roast eat to all this, obviously.

Speaker 5 (01:00:53):
Being married to you, my love. Yeah, but it's like whoa.

Speaker 4 (01:00:57):
I mean, I am exhausted on the ride, but it's
it's like it's a beautiful exhaustion because like y'all have
just poured your whole heart into it over and over
and over and over again, and y'all keep learning and
elevating and getting better and like knocked down and picked
back up, and it's like it's like it's like a
it's like a wrestling match out there.

Speaker 2 (01:01:19):
Well, you know, I think it's in Build touched on
this a little bit earlier, but like it's a god thing.
I mean, this is what we love to do. This
is what we have to do. This is what like
is our our oxygen to life is being an artist
and being creative and expressing ourselves. And as many times
as you want to quit and do something else or

you get frustrated in the process of that, like, there's
also the that's the beauty of it, you know, in
my opinion, And we keep forging ahead, and we keep
moving the chains, and we keep betting on ourselves and
believing in ourselves. And you know, God always puts something
in in He throws a little thing in there. It's

like it's kind of like atta boys, It's like all right, yep,
there you go, keep going, keep going. I mean, it's
not yeah what a CDC said it best man. It's
a long way to the top if you want to
rock and roll. And but it's it's it's what we
have to do, and it's what we all three agreed
to do together, and it's it's our true belief and
core is to make music and perform for people and

and help other people through our music and and and
have a positive influence on the world through art and creativity.

Speaker 1 (01:02:33):
Bill said something earlier. He used the word dedicate, and
we are truly dedicated to this, and at this point
in our career, I think it's more about creating music
to give to people, not it's not about the music industry.
If all that happens, then so be it. But it's
we're not like, we're not out seeking that. I think

we're in a different places of band. Like Michael said,
making this album, it truly was the most just real
form of us just going to the studio where a
lot of these songs were songs that we were denied
even having a chance to record when we were on
major labels. So this was truly just something that we

wanted to do that we feel creatively in our hearts
was what we needed to do as a band, and
we always have a tendency to unanimously agree on that
and forge ahead. And that's that's the beauty of a band.

Speaker 5 (01:03:30):
Was this album healing for you guys?

Speaker 1 (01:03:32):
It was? Yeah, totally.

Speaker 4 (01:03:34):
Yeah, I feel like it is. And like the songs
like y'all talk about real real.

Speaker 2 (01:03:38):
Stuff like oh we lived some life.

Speaker 4 (01:03:40):
You've your fathers now, how his fatherhood changed, you guys.

Speaker 2 (01:03:44):
Fatherhood's wonderful. That's the best thing we've ever done.

Speaker 1 (01:03:47):
You know.

Speaker 3 (01:03:48):
Well that was you know, that was like looking back
on COVID and everything, it was, you know again, I'm like,
you know, maybe that whole thing was a god situation.
It was like, you know, we wanted the big record
deal again and we wanted that thing, and it was like, well,
maybe the lesson here is that you know, what you
want is not really what you need and what you
you know what I mean. And like, so we all

became fathers right at the start of COVID.

Speaker 4 (01:04:11):
We were home, You've been able to be hands on.

Speaker 3 (01:04:14):
You know, and like I mean, there are a lot
of artists out there that were, like I found it
a great creative time for me, you know, because I
was at home and I was writing. I found it
to be the opposite time, you know, like it was
so not inspiring for me at all, you know, during
the COVID lockdowns and everything. But you know what was
great about that and not feeling like, oh, I'm not

inspired right now to create or whatever was that I
was literally just like we're having family time that we'd
never really had, you know, and being Dad's for the
first time and it was really special looking back on
it now, and again, I think it's all a god
thing because we emerged from that as healthier people, you know,
physically and spiritually, and.

Speaker 5 (01:04:53):
Y'all really happy.

Speaker 4 (01:04:54):
Y'all have did a lot of work on yourself, shedding
a lot.

Speaker 2 (01:04:57):
I think we you know, as wild that is. Is
it to say like we needed that time to process
the last like eight years and heal from a lot
of the.

Speaker 4 (01:05:06):
Stuff and get your head on straight, like what do
you even want out of life?

Speaker 2 (01:05:10):
Exactly? And you know a child will put that in perspective,
but also just a break from the get to like
get off the hamster wheel, yeah, you know, and and
really kind of get down to like why and in
the core of why you're doing it, Like now it's
it's a lot bigger than like when we were twenty
years old and it was just about time, you know,

shrinking a bunch and staying out late and traveling the
world and having all these experiences and taking all these pictures.
Now like that, like it's you really get down, like
why the hell you do it?

Speaker 4 (01:05:40):
Do you feel like you know your why?

Speaker 2 (01:05:42):
I mean absolutely, what do you feel like it is.
I feel like the whole encompassing of our story is
like we we not only have to do it and
want to do it, it's it's a part of who
we are. And there's a bigger message to it to
us now than there ever was. You know, it used
to be like a selfish thing, but now it's like
the tides turn. It's more about like looking outward and

what you're what you're doing for other people in the
sense of your art. That's what it's for. That's why
you have the gift and you pick up on the
things that you do to express it. It's it's it's
to heal you, but it's maybe to help somebody else
along the way. And there's just a bigger purpose to
it in life, like we all have a bigger purpose
in it.

Speaker 4 (01:06:24):
I love it.

Speaker 2 (01:06:25):
Then the you know, stay up all night on.

Speaker 4 (01:06:27):
Sun syst Hey, but at least you have to do that.

Speaker 2 (01:06:29):
You got it was great.

Speaker 1 (01:06:31):
I don't regret it.

Speaker 4 (01:06:32):
And now you get to be healthy and wise and
you know you're gonna be like on stage of Tony
Robbins here soon.

Speaker 5 (01:06:37):
Yeah, to tell me the album?

Speaker 4 (01:06:39):
What's it called? And how can people find it? The
newest album.

Speaker 3 (01:06:43):
The album is going to be it's called The Outside
and it comes out later this year, but we're dropping
multiple singles off of it.

Speaker 1 (01:06:50):
You know.

Speaker 3 (01:06:51):
No news is out now and we're about to go
on the Highway Sound Tour spring oh yeah, yeah, headlining tour. Yeah,
and believe it or not, this is kind of our
first proper headlining tour.

Speaker 4 (01:07:04):
Okay. You know, so that's going to be all the fields.

Speaker 3 (01:07:07):
Yeah, it really is.

Speaker 1 (01:07:09):
And you deal for us, yeah.

Speaker 3 (01:07:11):
You know we have we have our own label now,
Highway Sound Records. You know, that allows us to be
independent and free and bank music for all the right
reasons and get it out to the people. And now
we have the Highway Sound Tour and everyone.

Speaker 4 (01:07:28):
Get your tickets. Check it out Highway Sound Tour dot com,
Thousand Horses dot com. I love it.

Speaker 5 (01:07:35):
We'll see you on the road. Okay.

Speaker 4 (01:07:36):
I always wrap up with leave your Light. What do
you want people to know after this incredible journey I've
been on. What kind of wisdom do you want to
share with people?

Speaker 3 (01:07:47):
M hm.

Speaker 1 (01:07:49):
Hm learn from the past and look forward to the future.
That's something I've been thinking a lot about lately.

Speaker 5 (01:07:56):
I love that Graham that's good.

Speaker 2 (01:08:00):
We all three got to do this.

Speaker 4 (01:08:01):
I guess what about Michael? Always your wife is always right.

Speaker 2 (01:08:07):
Listen to your wife and you will go far. I
would say, go ahead.

Speaker 3 (01:08:14):
Uh, I would say that, you know, prayer is real
and it works. I love that, don't forget that.

Speaker 5 (01:08:25):
I love that.

Speaker 4 (01:08:26):
I feel like I've really like come back to god hardcore,
not that you ever didn't have them, but you know,
it's like it's easy to get lost. Like I feel
like God has really become like a centerpoint for you
guys in your band, which is cool.

Speaker 3 (01:08:37):
Yeah. Absolutely. I mean we've started, you know, praying before
shows and stuff, which is you know, something that you
know I would always kind of sneak off and do it,
you know myself, and just you know, but we prayer.
We are trying to you know, incorporate that and you know,
give the glory to God whenever we can, you know, yeah,

can and everything.

Speaker 5 (01:09:00):
And everything you know it's all his anyway.

Speaker 3 (01:09:03):
Yeah, well he hadn't quit, ye, so yeah, but you
know it's certainly something that now we in our personal
lives and as a band and as you know, creative,
so we try to like work, you know, work on
the spiritual and not always he do.

Speaker 5 (01:09:19):
Yeah, take us home, babe.

Speaker 2 (01:09:21):
I would say, you know, always bet on yourself and
believe in yourself, but also be interested, not interesting, in
other people and other things, and use your art and
expression to help other people.

Speaker 4 (01:09:36):
I love that a thousand horses. Thank you for coming
on Get Real Podcasts. This is a thrill of a
lifetime for me.

Speaker 2 (01:09:42):
Hey, we're having to be here. Thanks for having us
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