Country music veteran brings his live show to Wabash drive-in
Tritt rejuvenated with album of new songs
May 12, 2021
After 13 years of strictly touring, country artist Travis Tritt has recorded a new studio album and is hitting the road once again. On May 21, he will take the stage at 13-24 Drive-In.
Tritt made a conscious decision 13 years ago to focus on the live performance aspect of music. He historically had a hard time multitasking; switching modes from being laser-focused on the writing phase, to the recording phase, and then the touring phase.
“I realized I had been blessed with enough hits in my career that I could do a 90- to 120-minute show filled with nothing but songs people recognize,” Tritt said in a phone interview with Whatzup.
Writing More Music
Two years ago, though, Tritt hired a new manager who offered a different perspective.
“When I hired him, one of the first things he brought to my attention was that I had a great career and a lot of success, but he still thought I had a lot of great music left in me,” Tritt said.
By doing this, Tritt’s management predicted he would be able to feed his loyal fans, while also drawing in new fans.
Prior to recording his new album, Tritt was nervous because the way most producers record has changed over the past decade. His producer Dave Cobb put his mind at ease.
“As soon as he and I first started discussing the opportunity to do an album together, he told me he takes a group of musicians into the studio and they record everything live at the same time in the same room,” Tritt said. “He said he was going to capture as many of my live vocals as possible.”
On this tour, Tritt plans to perform both songs people will recognize and new songs from his latest studio album, Set in Stone, released May 7.
Sticking to Tradition
Tritt’s music is primarily based in traditional country music, however, he does have influences from southern rock, blues, and bluegrass.
“If you take traditional country music and mix it with southern rock, a little bit of blues, a little bit of bluegrass, and sprinkle some southern gospel over the top of it, that pretty much describes me to a T,” Tritt said.
His new album encompasses these genres. His single “Smoke in a Bar” is one he’s greatly looking forward to singing in front of a crowd.
“Every time we’ve had a chance to do that song live, the response has been phenomenal,” Tritt said. “I think primarily because there are so many people hungry for a bit of nostalgia. Country music tells a story that they can relate to.”
Performing live is the only thing Tritt said he knows how to do. There’s an excitement level involved with live performance, and nothing replaces that for him.
“There’s a ball of energy that goes from the stage to the audience, and back to the stage,” Tritt said.
Tritt has never been one to just stand in one spot on stage. He likes to move around and engage with his audience.
“We want to take people on a musical journey,” Tritt said. “We don’t just want to get up and play.”
Tritt’s show will be an exciting night of experiencing music live, which is the way he believes it was intended to be played.
“I can’t believe I’m lucky enough to be in the position to be out there playing these songs people recognize, night after night,” Tritt said.
Hitting the Road Again
During his stretch of only touring, his plans came to a screeching halt due to the pandemic, following suit with most of the country.
Tritt spent the majority of 2020 staying home with family. According to him, that was the only silver lining.
“That was great, but even after being home for an extended period, I think my family was ready for me to be back on the road,” Tritt said. “I’m an old musician, and if I don’t get a chance to go out and tour for a while, I start getting cabin fever.”
Though his main tours were canceled, Tritt still had the opportunity to do a few drive-in shows during the fall of 2020. He had one of the busiest Decembers he’s had in his career.
Now, as venues are reopening, he is starting to see more opportunities coming his way.
“Soon, we’re going to be back on tour like the old days,” Tritt said. “After being off for such a long time, that’s going to be a welcomed sight.”
Since people have been denied the opportunity to attend live shows for a year, Tritt is looking forward to the audience being equally as excited to experience live music as artists are to bring it.
“I think that’s going to create an explosion on both sides like nothing we’ve ever seen before, and I cannot wait,” Tritt said.
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