Just moments before country crooner Chase Rice headlined Live In The Vineyard Goes Country in Napa Valley, he caught up with CMT to give an update on his forthcoming record and to reveal some big plans he has in store for 2022.
While kicking back and sipping on a cold beer, the "Lonely If You Are" singer pulled up the cover art to his highly anticipated album.
"That's my dad in the eighties," Rice pointed to the cover art on his iPhone. "I'm gonna call it, 'I Hate Cowboys and All Dogs Go To Hell,'" he added before explaining that two tracks on the collection inspired the title name.
Full of excitement, the multi-platinum artist began to rattle off more information about the project.
"'I Hate Cowboys' is one song on there, and 'All Dogs Go To Hell' is a second," he said. "I think we are doing about 13 – 14 songs."
The hitmaker revealed that the tracklist is officially complete, but he decided to take his time fine-tuning each piece.
"First of all, I recorded in my house. It is me and my guitar for a lot of the songs. But, I'm not there yet… we're in mix right now. We gotta bring these songs to life. The production's there, the songs are there, and the album cover is there."
Rice penned each melody tucked away in his farmhouse outside of Nashville during the height of the global pandemic. The unexpected pause provided the chart-topping artist with the time to reflect, the chance to rekindle relationships, and the opportunity to hone in on his artistry in a way that he has never done before. Therefore, the hitmaker transformed his Tennessee home into a recording studio to develop his one-of-a-kind LP.
"It's the side of me that I wish I'd put out a long time ago, but I just never did," he confessed. "I was just young and just wanted to do what was fun. I was 24-years-old, right outta college. It's like, 'why would you not sing about that?'"
When he sat down to write, he placed the party anthems on the back burner and began to dig deep to find his vulnerable side.
"This [the upcoming album] just got a little bit more life. It's got more real stuff," Rice told CMT. "I dive into issues in my life, issues in my upbringing – great stuff about it and sh*tty stuff about it. The album is all over the map as far as the topics that I am addressing."
The vocalist worked day in and day out to find the courage to knock down the wall he had kept up his entire career. Once he demolished the barricade holding him back, he left his heart and soul on the writing table.
"We were staying up till three or four in the morning some nights, just to get something real," Rice shared while clarifying that opening up was a massive challenge. "I think we are going to put it on, but there is a song called 'For A Day.' It is about my dad. It's like, 'what would you do for a day with him?' It just gets real," he added.
Although the release date remains hush-hush, Rice said he is eager to perform the raw soundtrack out on the road. The Florida native acknowledged that his entire show would "change" after the record's released.
Before Rice embarks on his own headlining trek, he exclusively told CMT that he would be joining Jason Aldean this upcoming fall.
"We are doing Aldean in the fall," he confirmed. "We don't know where we are playing yet, but I think we are playing Nashville. I don't know much about it. I just know it is going to be pretty sick," he said with a smile ear to ear.
The country singer shared that he would like to build a friendly relationship with Aldean. When they aren't crushing the stage, he also hopes to hit the golf green together.
"We've never toured together over the last 10 years of my career. I am looking forward to getting to know Aldean a little bit more," he uttered. "We are members of the same golf course now. We were paired dead last in our championship…so we need to golf a lot. I'm already getting to know him. As far as learning from him, I'll go out and watch. He's selling out arenas and stadiums. He's doing something right," he concluded.