The title of Jack Ingram’s upcoming album, Big Dreams and High Hopes, sums up his approach to life and his career.
In a recent interview with CMT Insider, Ingram talked about the album, along with his decision to record a new version of the fan favorite, “Barbie Doll.” He also displayed optimism in his effort to make the Guinness Book of World Records for the most interviews ever given in a 24-hour period. He’ll work to achieve that goal around the time the new album is released on Aug. 25.
The idea for the new album’s title track came about unexpectedly.
“I was talking with a buddy of mine, talking about being in this business and what it takes to get there and what it takes to stay there,” Ingram explains. “I just said it in a conversation, ’All I’ve ever really had was a guitar and big dreams and high hopes.’ And that’s what’s kept me going.
“I ended up writing a song called ’Big Dreams and High Hopes’ which is about that — just kind of looking out at the world from your window and seeing what’s out there and kind of having that wanderlust of hitting the highway and doing it — chasing your dreams. I think that’s what you need. You need big dreams and high hopes. If you’re gonna get up every morning, you’ve gotta have something to go for.”
Ingram has already found success with “Barefoot and Crazy,” the first single from the album. However, he’s excited about the new version of “Barbie Doll,” a song that first appeared on his 1999 album, Hey You, several years before he began achieving success in mainstream country music.
“It’s had a fantastic life,” he says of the song. “On the record it’s a great, loose, drunk, fun recording with Todd Snider screaming in the background. Live, it just plays every night. It just goes over gangbusters every single night.”
After performing the song for years in smaller venues in his home state of Texas, Ingram noticed the crowd response during his arena shows as the opening act for Toby Keith, Martina McBride and others.
“Even though that song has never been a single and most of the people at the concerts have never heard the song before, by the time we’re done playing it live, people are on their feet screaming, spilling beers and having a great time,” he says. “So I thought this would be a great time to reintroduce it to … a huge, brand new country audience.”
As for the Guinness Book of World Records, Ingram is planning to beat the interview record set by Pete Wentz and Patrick Vaughn Stump of the rock band, Fall Out Boy. In 2008, they gave interviews with 72 radio stations during a 24-hour period.
Ingram acknowledges that the plan is aimed at attention to the release of Big Dreams and High Hopes.
“I knew we were going to do a ton of interviews anyway, so I thought, ’I should just do it all day long. For 24 hours, let’s just get on the phone and stay on,'” he says. The executives at his label, Big Machine Records, thought it was an excellent idea. “That’s what I get for opening my stupid mouth,” he laughs.
Predicting he’ll surpass Fall Out Boy’s record “by a pretty good shot,” Ingram adds, “It’s going to be fun. I’m going to be able to visit and catch up with a ton of guys from radio stations that I’ve been friends with for the last five or six years. It’s going to be nice to catch up, talk about the new record — and break a record, as well.”