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Archive for the ‘Country Music Tattle Tale Artist Interviews’ Category

Interview: Dan + Shay are Mutually “Obsessed” With Fans

Dan Shay

Sometimes you use a word or phrase so much that it becomes a cliché, but sometimes it becomes a song. And an album title. That’s exactly what happened when Dan + Shay noticed that their fans were tweeting the word “obsessed” about their music and live shows.

As perpetual songwriters, the duo introduced the concept during a songwriter’s retreat and wrote “Obsessed,” which eventually became the title track of the album coming out on June 3.

“This album was so inspired by our fans. The song ‘Road Trippin’ was the same thing. We saw fans tweeting #roadtrippin and we wrote that down in our cell phones. We wrote that song because of what fans were saying about road tripping to the Dan + Shay show or driving 10 hours to come see us play,” says Dan Smyers.

So what can fans expect to hear on the duo’s sophomore album?

“It’s all about the lead vocal and Shay is the best singer I’ve ever heard. As a producer, my vision is to stay out of the way of the lead vocal. Everything there needs to be intentional.  It’s not as busy on this record,” says Dan, who co-produced the album.

“As songwriters we like to listen to different things that will inspire. I feel like it’s important to listen to other melodies that are in pop, R&B, and old gospel stuff. It’s kinda cool to pull from different melodies,” says Shay Mooney.

Dan added, “We owe it to our fans to progress our songwriting with every single song we write. We don’t want to alienate the sound that got us to where we are. We want to stay in Dan + Shay lane.”

One of the most unique elements of the album is the addition of a horn section on the song “Obsessed.” Reminiscent of Stevie Wonder, Shay used the opportunity to be creative vocally as well. “I pretty much just made up words at the end. To be able to play around with something and create something special was a lot of fun.”

Dan + Shay’s current single at radio is “From The Ground Up,” which was a “majestic moment” in the studio, according to Dan. “It was like a Disney movie or something.”

Obsessed Track list:

  1. All Nighter
  2. Road Trippin’
  3. From the Ground Up
  4. Already Ready
  5. How Not To
  6. Lipstick
  7. Round the Clock
  8. Lately
  9. Sway
  10. Obsessed

The duo will be hitting the road with Darius Rucker this summer and they expect fans to be ready to hear the new music live.  “We’re going to be counting on everybody to sing it back to us,” says Dan.

For tour dates and more, visit

The Swon Brothers Talk ‘Timeless’ and Their Distinct Distaste for Velvet?!

swon brothers

The Swon Brothers sat down to chat with CMTT this week at the annual CRS Seminar in Nashville. The duo just released a new EP, Timeless, on their own record label after parting ways with Arista Nashville. The guys are proud of the new music, having took the time to write and play on the entire album.

See what song is their favorite on the album, and check out our 10QQQ with the guys… You’ll discover their worst and best habits, songs they wish they’d written, biggest pet peeves and more!!!

Josh Thompson Embraces “Change” With Release of New EP

josh thompson.jpg

In 2012, Josh Thompson was on the verge of releasing his sophomore album when a shakeup at his then record label RCA changed everything. The project was halted and he left the label, but he was able to hold onto the music until he found the right opportunity to release it. He ended up recording a different collection of songs for his second album “Turn It Up” in 2014 under the guidance of a new record label, Show Dog Universal. Once that relationship ended, Thompson knew he wanted to find a way to release the songs he’d previously recorded; that opportunity came this year through a partnership with ole Music.

“It’s the first second record that came out third,” chuckles Thompson.

On October 9, 2015, “Change: The Lost Record (Volume 1)” will be released digitally. It’s a collection of songs dear to Thompson; not only did he co-write every song, but he was also able to bring his buddy Justin Moore in to sing on the track “Livin’ Like Hank,” a road-warrior’s anthem.

“It was a perfect fit – he definitely knew where that song was coming from.”

The six-song collection is a snapshot of life for everyday Americans, with songs like “Work in the Mornin” and the gospel-infused “Gotta Go to Heaven.”

Although Thompson has had songs he’s co-written recorded by other artists, like “Church Pew or Bar Stool” by Jason Aldean, he tries not to write with a particular artist in mind.

“If it finds a home, it does the song justice.”

After all of the change he’s endured since the beginning of his career, Thompson is optimistic looking ahead. The second volume of the “Change: The Lost Record” is set to be released in early 2016, and he’s continually on the road sharing the new music with fans.

And if you’ve never heard his music before, he encourages you to listen to “Over Me”:

“Musically, it’s got a very deep pocket, it’s traditional in nature, and lyrically, it definitely defines who I am.”

For more information and tour dates, visit

Track list:

  1. Same Ol Plain Ol Me (Rhett Akins, Ben Hayslip, Josh Thompson)
    2. Work In the Morning (Phil O Donnell, David Lee Murphy, Josh Thompson)
    3. Over Me (Phil O Donnell, Josh Thompson, Chris Wallin)
    4. Change (Phil O Donnell, Josh Thompson, Chris Wallin)
    5. Gotta Go to Heaven (Arlis Albritton, Cliff Cody, Josh Thompson)
    6. Livin’ Like Hank (Phil O Donnell, Rod Jantzen, Josh Thompson)

Eli Young Band Debut Fresh New Sound with Turn It On


Eli Young Band is ready to “Turn It Up” with a fresh new sound on their brand new single impacting radio today!  The infectious “Turn It On,” has an up-tempo, monster hook that instantly grabs you and sinks into your head after just one listen.   The band debuted the song for country radio at this year’s Country Radio Seminars (CRS) in Nashville last month.

The band explained to CMTT the decision to release “Turn It On” as the bands next single was left up to their label but the band was happy with the choice,

“When it comes to singles we always have our opinions,  but we aren’t the kind of band to put songs on our records that we don’t love.” Mike explained.   “We don’t want to turn into that band where we have to play a show full of songs that we really don’t love, but when it comes down to the singles, we kind of leave that up to the people who probably know better than us.”

The Turn it Up EP  will be available for fans tomorrow, March 10. With a trio of platinum and multi-platinum #1 hits like “Drunk Last Night,” “Even If It Breaks Your Heart” and “Crazy Girl” under their belts, EYB went into the studio to record four songs, co-written by members of the band, with producers Ross Copperman and Jeremy Stover. Thrilled with the evolution of the band’s sound, their label Republic Nashville is releasing the complete collection immediately, fast tracking the single and EP.

Turn it Up EP is the follow-up to the band’s critically acclaimed album 10,000 TOWNS. The album made its debut at #1 on the Billboard Country Album Chart and earned EYB multiple Grammy, CMA, ACM, CMT, ACA and Billboard award nominations.

With Turn it Up EP, EYB continues to evolve in a fresh and exciting ways. The new music highlights clever lyrics and beat-laden grooves from the band of brothers.

1. “Turn It On” (Mike Eli, James Young, Rodney Clawson, Matt Dragstrem)
2. “Plastic” (Mike Eli, Ashley Gorley, Ross Copperman, Jeremy Stover)
3. “Your Place Or Mine” (Mike Eli, Jon Jones, Ross Copperman, Jeremy Stover)
4. “Drink You Up” (Mike Eli, Jon Jones, Ross Copperman, Jeremy Stover)

Visit for more information.

Take a listen to “Turn it Up” below and make sure to watch our entire interview with the band above or here.  Make sure to watch until the end where the guys play “Who Is” with us!

Turn It Up is available on iTunes NOW!  CLICK HERE to get your copy NOW!

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