Thomas Rhett Credits Trading in His Sneakers for Boots in Aiding Him Creating His New Album

Regarding getting off "the sneaker train," the "Country Again" vocalist says it "felt different, it felt right, it felt normal"

For the past eight years, Thomas Rhett had become a bit of a sneaker aficionado. However, of late — especially while recording his latest album Country Again: Side A, he’s had a change of heart.

“If you know me, you know I’ve been on the sneaker train for a while,” Rhett told Audacy Country. “One day I was walking into a meet and greet and I saw my cowboy boots I’ve had since high school sittin’ in the back of my bus and I put them on…I think it was kind of a shock to a lot of people, but I just felt different, it felt right, it felt normal.”

In a 2017 Billboard interview that, “when [he] started to move around onstage a bit more” during his live concerts, he was fearful of breaking his ankle. Calling it “the most terrifying transition you can make as a country artist,” he’s worn everything from Vans to Nike’s Cortez-style sneakers.

However, as he recalls, “There was just a shift in me early on in 2019 where I just woke up one day decided that I wanted to live a little bit more simple and really wanted to put some things into perspective. Not that the boots did that, they were just kind of a reminder…kind of where I came from and the kind of music that I love.”

One listen to songs like “To The Guys That Date My Girls,” “More Time Fishin’,” “Put It On Ice,” and “Heaven Right Now” note a feel more in line with traditional country sounds and not a more contemporary-style take on the genre. In a manner not dissimilar from classic Garth Brooks hanging out with his “friends in low places,” Rhett “showing up in boots” clearly made a profound difference.