Blake Shelton could use a long winter’s nap. After all, he woke up early — for a musician at least — to tell CMT.com and CMT Radio about his Christmas gift to his new wife Kaynette, touring with Toby Keith and the animals he will never allow on his farm. Shelton resumes his tour with Keith on Thursday (Jan. 15) in Tupelo, Miss.
CMT: What kind of resolutions did you make for this year? Is there anything that you’d like to do better or differently?
Shelton: My resolution is to try to have two hits in a row this year. I’ve never done that. That would be exciting to me because I usually put out a song that’s a hit, and then I put out two that are stiffs. And so this year my goal is to actually have two hits in a row.
Do you have new music coming?
I do. We’re working on an album right now. I think we’ll have a single in late February or March. … I am starting to figure out, you know, a little bit more about what I want to do musically. But I’m still not totally there with exactly who I am and what I want to do musically. This album has more of a direction than either of the first two albums.
Are you writing?
I am. We’ve only cut seven things so far, but two of them I wrote. I don’t know when we’re cutting again. Next month some time. I don’t know how many we’ll end up having on there that I wrote.
How was your New Year’s Eve show with Toby?
It was pretty fun. I didn’t get as drunk as I told everybody I was going to. My plan was to get an ice chest and set it on the stage while Willie was playing and drink, but I had too many people there that I knew, so I didn’t get to do that. So I just did whatever an old man would do, and I went home early and fed the chickens the next morning right on time. Life gets boring when you get to be my age.
How was life on the road last year?
Well, Scotty Emerick lives on my bus now, and it’s weird how the thing happened, but he actually travels and lives on my tour bus and drinks my beer and eats my food. He’s suppose to ride on Toby’s bus, since he’s Toby’s mini me. … But I swear to God, I go to get on my bus here in Nashville, and Scotty’s on it, laughing and drinking and having a good time. And he’s got the bunk that’s on the top right, which is two bunks above me. He lives on my bus now, and I don’t know if he’s going to stay — like when this tour’s over, if he’s going to go with me or Toby.
Do you think he looks up to you?
No, I don’t even think he likes me that much. I don’t know if Toby or somebody got on to him and kicked him off their bus. I mean I’m not kidding. He lives on my bus, and there’s really not a lot I can do about it because I work for Toby, and he’s Toby’s kid. He’s been living with me for about four months, I guess.
Would you like to send Scotty a message? If you could say something to him, say it now, and we’ll post it.
He owes me for about $300 worth of groceries and about the same in beer.
With this tour kicking back up, what can fans expect?
We’ll be doing some of the new album this year, and this weekend, we’re actually going to start playing some of the new songs. I don’t know how many we’ll do. That’s what I’m looking forward to the most — seeing what kind of reaction we get out of these new songs we do.
Did anybody tell you that your name came up on screen when Joe Nichols won the CMA Horizon Award last year?
That’s what they told me, but I didn’t see that.
Do you feel that you should get that award since your name was on there?
Well, I’ll tell you this. I’m going to have an 8×10 picture made of the moment whenever Joe was standing on stage, and my name is on the screen. To me, that’s as good as a CMA because one of my things that I like to do is to ruin a moment for somebody. Knowing that Joe was up there and he did get the award, which is great. … But man, that one thing — I know it had to mess it up for him a little bit, and that makes my day.
You are the sweetest guy I know. How’s the married life treating you?
I’ll tell you the most surprising thing about being married. Everybody has always told me, “It may be fun now, but you get married and everything changes. You guys won’t get along anymore.” The biggest surprise to me is that there is absolutely zero difference from when we were just boyfriend and girlfriend to being married. That surprises me because everybody told me that it was going to be different.
How was your Christmas this year?
I got Kaynette a horse for Christmas this year, which is the first animal besides the chickens, and turkeys, and ducks, and stuff, and quail, and guineas, and peacocks, and pheasants. It’s the first real farm animal that we have. We have the farm, and I’ve spent a lot of money doing farm stuff, but it’s the first real farm thing I’ve ever had.
Are you planning on getting pigs?
No, that’s a different story. That’s a completely different story. No, I’m not.
I hate ’em. I had some out here this year. We had a big pen for them, and they kept getting out and rooting up the yard, and so we made sausage out of them. But the horse, this is cool. I went to shop around. I called some buddies, and some people I knew that traded horses and dealt with them, and this guy called me and said I found a horse for you. And he got to telling me about him, and he said he’s a registered paint, and his name is Playboy. And so I have two dogs. One is named Austin and one is named Ol’ Red. And now I have a horse named Playboy, which my last single was — “Playboys of the Southwestern World,” so I thought I gotta get this horse. So I bought it not thinking that I was in Oklahoma, and I had to get it to Tennessee. So then I had to buy a trailer and all kinds of crap, but now he lives here with us. Isn’t that an amazing story?
Yeah, now you just need a pig named Heavy Liftin’.
(laughing) No more pigs.
Is there any sort of animal that you would not get?
Well, I hate pigs. I hate goats.
What’s wrong with the goats?
I don’t know. What do you do with them? Guess you could eat ’em.
Did you get a new turkey?
I’ve got a new turkey, and I just let him out of his pen. His name is Turk, and I just let him out. He’s called a Royal Palm turkey, and they don’t get very big. He’s black and white, and he’s just small enough that he still thinks he’s a chicken because I had him with the chickens until he got grown. So now he stays. Do you know what a banty chicken is?
Yeah. Like a little show-off chicken.
Well, he thinks that’s what he is, and so it’s funny because he stays with that particular group of chickens. He’s about 3 feet tall, and they’re about 10 inches tall.
Speaking of country living, have you been watching the show with Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie?
The Simple Life. It’s about these two rich girls living in Arkansas for a while.
Oh, I saw that porno she had on the Internet. I did see that.
Would you comment on that?
On her porno? Well, I’ll tell ya, I just want to say that I think it’s an excellent promotional idea, and I can think of a handful of country artists I’d like to see do the same promotion.
Do you think you’d ever do that promotion?
Absolutely. I would want to play the part of the man.
So how did the Cowboy U taping go? Did you sing for those guys out there?
I did, and I really, truly, honestly believe that none of those guys had ever heard of me.
Why do you say that?
Normally, there’s a certain build-up and reaction you get when you’re a country singer, and you’re about to perform or surprise an audience. So this guy … Who’s the guy that runs the deal?
Rocco, that’s him, walks up, and I’m standing hiding behind a tree or something, and he tells them, “Ladies and gentlemen, we have a special guest here on Cowboy U.” You could see their eyes light up, you know, they’re excited. “And it’s Blake Shelton!” And I mean, just total complete silence. You could hear crickets. They were hoping, you know this is CMT; maybe it’ll be Tim McGraw or somebody they had heard of. So I sat down, and I had to kind of explain who I was and what I do. And even then I thought, ‘Well I’ll play a song that was a hit and they’ll know,’ and I could tell by the blank looks on their faces that they’d never heard of me even after playing them a couple of hits. But I found out they were from like, San Francisco and Los Angeles and stuff like that. They really weren’t country people at all, right? Right?
Right. But if you were a contestant on that show, could you show them who’s boss, if you had to rope the cattle and all that stuff?
Yeah, I think that I could do that. I don’t think there is anything on that show that I couldn’t do. Other than their showers are outside on that show. They’re literally outside, and it gets cold there. California’s like the desert. When the sun goes down, it drops like 30 or 40 degrees real quick. That’s the only thing that I thought. I felt sorry for those people for outdoor showers.
Do you know how to ride a horse?
Of course I do.
Do you know how to rope?
They call me Saddle ‘Em up Shelton back in Oklahoma.
Do you really know how to rope? Don’t lie.
I can’t say that I’ve ever actually got on a horse and roped a cow, no.
But you know what a rope is?
Yeah, I’ve seen ’em.