Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About His New Album ‘Fathers & Sons’ and more

Luke Combs sits down with Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1 to talk about his new album Fathers & Sons. He talks about how his own relationship with his father inspired the album, and how his perspective on his childhood changed once he had children of his own, but that ultimately, he wanted the album to be relatable to all versions of father-son relationships, saying “There’s so many different experiences that people have as a child or as a parent or as a grandparent or whatever. And it’s like, I went there to be a little bit of a taste of all of that on the record.”

Luke Combs news on Country Music News Blog

He also talks about missing the birth of his second son while on tour, how the music industry has changed since he first started out, and the importance of therapy and mental health.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About Wanting His New Album ‘Fathers & Sons’ To Relate To Multiple Perspectives….

There’s so many different experiences that people have as a child or as a parent or as a grandparent or whatever. And it’s like, I went there to be a little bit of a taste of all of that on the record. Because I know that I think sometimes selfishly, I’m like, “Man, everybody must feel this way.” But I have friends that come from divorced homes. I have friends that didn’t have a dad around. There are those experiences. So it would be kind of shortsighted, I think, to have just made it.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About His Reflections On His Own Childhood And Relationship With His Father…

I was an only child. So obviously that comes with its own things. That’s its own kind of separate deal. So my parents both worked hard. I would say me and my dad weren’t like buddies, you know what I mean? Because he worked a lot. We lived on four acres outside of town. And so on the weekends, he was mowing and fixing the car. We didn’t have a lot of money. So it was like he worked 50 hours a week, and then when he got home, his time off was working on the house. Right, because we couldn’t really afford… If something broke, the best option is to fix it. And if you exhaust that resource, then it’s, “Well, I guess we got to pay some money to fix it.” You know what I mean? So there wasn’t a ton of throwing the baseball in the front yard, you know what I mean? And that’s not because he didn’t want to, it was because he was doing what he thought was the best version of what I needed, which is a washing machine that works so that my clothes are clean. It was picking up a extra… Going up to the bank on Saturday and fixing their air conditioner because he would get paid overtime to do that, and then we could fix the car’s radiator so my mom could take me to school. You know what I mean? So as a kid, you’re going… Your experience with that as a child is, “Well, my dad’s not around.” So you got the song on the record, All I Ever Do Is Leave. Which is like, “Well, Dad’s never… All he does is go and work. He doesn’t care about me. He doesn’t want to spend time with me. He doesn’t want to do this. As a child, that is your understanding of what’s going on. And then when I became a dad, you’re realizing, well, I go out and do all this stuff so my kids can have a better… So that was his version of that. He was showing me love by going out.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About How His Perspective Changed Once He Became A Father…

Luke Combs:  I think that’s the cool thing about the record that I love so much is there are so many different, once I had kids, I realized, it made me realize so many things about growing up and about my parents, my mom and my dad. And so it was like, well, you need to realize the process of evolving as a person is you realize that not every feeling that you had or not everything that you thought was going on is necessarily the truth, in some ways. And then you realize decisions that… It’s hard, right? Because you might’ve held some sort of grudge against dad or your parents for not being around. And then-

Zane Lowe:  And guess what? That becomes part of your identity and you carry it around with you for 25 years.

Luke Combs:  And it’s crazy, man. It’s like there’s not… Having kids for me was a huge perspective change on everything. And you hear all these lame cliches about, well man, it sure goes fast. And you’re like, okay.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About The Inspiration Behind The New Album…

Luke Combs: Here’s how it happened. So I had had one or two songs going that were about my kids. So this is probably right after my last record came out. I had one song about my first son on the last record that kind of… I was just getting into that phase when that record was being finished up. So one song snuck on there. And there was a big gap of no shows and raising the kid and then all of a sudden we’re having another kid and we’re on tour and it’s like life happened really fast for us. That change happened really quickly. And so then I realized, well now I’ve written two or three more songs about now that I’ve got a second son and my first one’s growing up a little bit and about that. And I go, man, I was kind of bummed because you can only really have one dad song on a record. That’s what I was thinking to myself is if I put out a good… Say I put out a 16 song record and five or six of them are dad songs, people are going to be like, “What? We get it. We get it, okay. You like being a dad, great, lame, stop. We get it. And so I went-

Zane Lowe:   It’s the songwriting equivalent of going to a barbecue and just pulling your phone out and constantly showing pictures of your kids. After a while, even your best friends, they’re like… How about some chicken?

Luke Combs:  A hundred percent. Yeah, dude, we have kids too. Great.” It’s like someone else’s fantasy football team. You care so much about your lineup and you don’t even know who you’re playing against. You’re just like, whatever. So I realized I went, well, you know what I’ll do? I’ll take these three, four songs and I’ll make an EP out of them and I’ll just surprise drop it on Fathers Day. No build up, no press, no anything. So I started telling my songwriting buddies, that’s what I’m going to do. I’ve got these couple of songs. I’m going to go just record them live. It’ll be a quick half day thing. We’ll get them done, and then that’ll just get it out of my system. And so once my buddies heard that, they were like, “Man, you should hear this song I started working on.” And then I stumbled upon some songs that I had been listening to for years that were never cut that I had always been a fan of. And I go, man, if I ever had kids, I would cut that song, but I didn’t have kids at the time when I heard those. And so then all of a sudden I’m going, well gosh, man, should I just make a whole record of this thing? And I’ll surprise drop it and just, it’ll be what it is. It’ll just live on its own and do whatever it’s going to do. And then once I have 12 songs in front of me that I’m like, man, these are all really great.

Luke Combs Tells Apple Music About How Missing His Son’s Birth Was One Of The Worst Days Of His Life…

Luke Combs:  I’ll never forget the craziest day, probably, in my life, close to it. One of the best and one of the worst days in my life at the same time was, interestingly enough, and it’s so hard to wrap my mind around it, just if you really think about it. So it’s August 16th, I wake up in the morning, I’m in Sydney, Australia, in a hotel room, and we’re on tour in Australia. I probably woke up at around 8:00 AM or something like that, Australia time, and I had a text from my wife and it said, “I’m so sorry, I really tried to not have the baby while you’re gone.” And God, dude, it sucked. It sucked because he was born on August 15th in the States. I got to see him be born, which was awesome. He wasn’t born yet, but my wife went, she texted me on the way to the hospital and he was two and a half weeks early and I was supposed to be home and I wasn’t. And that was real hard to do and I haven’t really told anybody that, but I didn’t cover that too much in this album because it’s really hard for me to deal with.

Zane Lowe: We do everything we can to control an environment in order to be all things at once, but life reminds us in moments like that, that we actually can’t control those things. Your son was going to come when he was going to come.

Luke Combs:  And he was ready, man. God, it was a hard day, but I was so lucky that a lot of my closest friends now work for me. And so I had a really great support system. I’m never on an island on the road because I have so many people that are so close to me. And two of my best, best friends were out with me on that trip and my best friend from high school was my personal assistant and he was there. He’s a father of two boys, and one of my best friends who I write songs with all the time was my guitar tech actually at that time. And he was there and he’s got two kids. And so I was able to be with them through that whole thing. And yeah, it was wild, dude. It really was. It was such a surreal thing. And I’m blessed. I was going to be gone for almost a month, so we had known… Obviously, we didn’t plan it that way. Right? Tour was already booked. And we knew there was a chance that he would come early. Luckily, my mother-in-law, she came up for the month while I was gone. Because obviously, we have a 1-year-old and my wife is essentially nine months pregnant at the time, so thank goodness she was there. My sister-in-law lives in Nashville as well. So my wife had a really great support system with her for that experience, which I’m very thankful for. That made it a lot easier. I had people with me, everything went great. No hiccups in the process or anything.

Zane Lowe:  And bless her for extending the grace to you, which really was a generous gift to say, “Look, I tried.” There’s nothing she can do. It’s such a sweet gesture, but at the end of the day, man, I mean nature’s going to have its way.

Luke Combs:  Oh, for sure, man. And looking back on it, man, it’s one of those stories that it’s a defining moment in my life for sure. It sums up, in a lot of ways, some of the bad parts of the music business, the leaving, and your schedule’s crazy and you’re travelling all over the place. It’s not like I can drop everything I’m doing and fly 18 hours home.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About His Song “In Case I Ain’t Around”…

And I had that idea. I go on a deer hunting trip every year in Mississippi in January. I get to go down there with some of my best buddies and we spend a week doing stuff we love together. I think of those times on those trips, man, and I cherish them because I think, man, now that we’ve all got kids, our kids are… They’re not getting older, but they’re growing every day. And the next two or three years may be all we have left of that trip as buddies, right? Because then we’ll be doing that trip as dads. Then we got down there and we’re sitting on the porch, and I had that title. And I thought, I was like, “Man, I just want to…” Something for my kids to hold onto, because you don’t know. You just don’t know. You know what I mean? And I’m like, God forbid something were to happen really to any of us that we’re writing that song. It’s something that our kids could come back to. If you were in the unfortunate situation of losing your parents when you were young, you would give anything to have something that they said to you or something that they did for you, something that they wrote to you.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About The Importance Of Therapy And Mental Health…

It’s vastly important. Mental health has played a huge part in my life for a long, long time, since I was 11 or 12 years old. It’s been crazy. And that’s the thing is I wonder, when did it, or why did it become weird to talk about? You know what I mean? It’s like we’re at this point now, I think, where I think anyone should realize that there is no one that doesn’t have something going on. You may not have some severe DSM-4 disorder, but you’ve got something, some version of something somewhere going on.

Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About How The Music Industry Has Changed Since He First Started Out….

I made two three-song EPs in college and “Rains” was on the second one. And I always would name the EP after the song that I thought would be the best song on the thing. And both times I was wrong. So it’s like I learned…It was like just record a group of songs that you love and don’t try to pick what you think the song that people are going to react to the most is because they’re going to choose for you. But the cool part about that was too, it was a valuable lesson especially, there was a lot of luck involved too, because streaming wasn’t the thing at that time. I mean, this is only, I mean, 10 years ago, 11 years ago maybe most. And so the music industry has changed a lot in that amount of time. So my career has taken off through all that change, this big era of change that we have. And so now you have a gauge, and you almost have an instantaneous metric of what’s the song people like? You can find that out in 12 hours. Your record comes out, 12 hours later, you know what song people are coming back to and listening more than the other ones. At that time, you didn’t know. Because you put it out and your EP goes up for sale and they just buy the whole thing, and then you don’t know.

Credits: Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1

About Shauna "WhiskeyChick" Castorena

Shauna "WhiskeyChick" Castorena is a freelance writer for both Country Music News and Country Music On Tour. Want to collab on some content? Email me. Want my rates for commercial promo work? Get them right here.

One Reply to “Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About His New Album ‘Fathers & Sons’ and more”

  1. Pingback: Luke Combs Talks To Apple Music About His New Album ‘Fathers & Sons’ and more – Cecil Ray Baker