Among the current crop of young country music artists there are few that are rocketing to stardom like Dustin Lynch. Lynch has been a mainstay at the top of the country music charts, reeling off hit after hit, so much so that he has been likened to the master himself, George Strait. And Lynch isn’t sitting at home resting on his laurels; he’s currently out on tour with Brad Paisley, playing all the hits for his fans, including the chart-toppers from his barely five-month old album Current Mood.
Dustin took a few minutes out from his busy schedule to answer a few questions for us by email, and his responses indicate that he’s as humble as he is driven. His commentary below is given exclusively to AXS.com.
AXS: You’re in the middle of a fairly lengthy tour with Brad Paisley. Other than rehearsal, do you have any kind of pre-tour regimen?
Dustin Lynch: Before this particular tour started I actually went on vacation! I took some time to travel, which was great after such a crazy year. I would say mentally the pre-tour regimen is to reset a bit and unwind. It’s also thinking about what we want to do differently out on the road, whether that be changing up the set list or adding a few surprises into the show.
AXS: With five consecutive #1 hits, the massively successful Current Mood album and a packed tour schedule with Paisley and beyond, you’re having an incredible run right now. Is it at all difficult to stay grounded?
DL: I think the key is to appreciate every single day I get to make music and entertain people. This past year in particular has been one of the busiest I’ve ever had and I could not be more thankful for the support from the fans, from radio, and everyone in between. And there’s still so much I hope to accomplish. My goal has always been to be Entertainer of the Year, so I’m definitely not slowing down. We had a show in Los Angeles as the wildfires were going on that we thought for a minute we were going to have to cancel. We were able to go on and I met a firefighter during meet & greet. I brought him out on stage, just as a way to say thank you for everything he’d done and the work of the fire department, and he ended up proposing to his girlfriend on stage. Something like that helps keep things in perspective.
AXS: Even being confident in your talent, is there something going on with your career right now that has kind of taken you by surprise?
DL: The success of “Small Town Boy” has blown me away. Of course I really believed in this song and knew it was special, but to have it be #1 for four weeks, one of the most-played songs of the year, and nominated for an iHeart Award is just absolutely incredible.
AXS: Speaking of small town boy, you’re one of those yourself. Does your life as a young man in Tullahoma, Tennessee still influence your art today?
DL: Tullahoma is maybe 40 minutes from Nashville, so it was always the big-city dream, you could say, to go play on Broadway and be a country artist. I brought a bunch of folks out to Tullahoma when we announced Current Mood and the Ride or Die tour, and I go back home every year and play a benefit show in the high school gym with some songwriting buddies. It’s very much a part of who I am as an artist.
AXS: Tell us a bit about the making of the video for “Small Town Boy.”
DL: We shot “Small Town Boy” on a beach in Malibu, which happens to be one of my favorite places; I love being outdoors so that beach was my ideal location. Claire Holt, the actress who is in the video, is drop-dead gorgeous, so of course that made it a great day, too. I actually wrote my new single “I’d Be Jealous Too” right after that shoot. The whole Current Mood album has a west-coast vibe to it so this video definitely played into that.
AXS: We’re guessing its “ecstatic,” but what’s your current mood, anyway?
DL: Ecstatic is definitely one of them! Grateful, excited, proud; all of the above.
Follow Dustin Lynch here.