When you see that look in Brett Young’s baby blues, it isn’t too hard to understand what took this California boy from a ball field to the recording studio. His gritty vocals and impassioned lyrics are built on the same firm foundation that had him as a pre-draft selection of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays straight out of high school—hard work, sheer talent and that thing music industry execs and baseball talent scouts alike simply call heart. Those same qualities have gotten Brett’s songs placed on television shows like MTV’s The Real World and Kardashian pop culture favorite Kourtney and Kim Take New York, and his feet planted firmly on some of the most well-known stages in the world — The Roxy, The Troubador, The Viper Room, sharing those stages with some of pop music’s best and brightest, from Colbie Caillat to Gavin DeGraw to Katy Perry.
We got to talk to Brett recently so check it out!
You recently released an acoustic album called “Broken Down.” What encouraged you to go in an acoustic direction for this album?
For the past 10 years I have been playing acoustic shows and creating a fan base built around that sound. When we released “On Fire” earlier this year, it was a HUGE hit. The only comment we were getting on a regular basis was, “I love it! But, I miss those days when it was just you and your guitar. Any chance there will be an acoustic version?” This felt like an opportunity to accomplish 3 things. One, give them what they were asking for. Two, introduce a few new songs that will show up again in early 2014 on my next fully produced album. And three, start getting people used to the country instruments that will begin to show them the artist I am and intend to be. Not just the acoustic singer-songwriter that I got started as. “Broken Down” is exactly what I hoped it would be and I’m so happy with it and how it is being received!
You’ll be playing at Eddie’s Attic next month- a venue that you’ve sold out twice before. What is it like playing to a sold out crowd?
Eddie’s, and Atlanta in general, is always such an amazing experience for me! A full room is one thing, every artist dreams of that, but the special thing about my Atlanta and Eddie’s Attic fan base is that they don’t just show up and fill the room. They treat it like a true listening room. They are quiet, attentive, and respectful. Sharing my songs in that environment is absolutely priceless and validating. I can’t wait to get back there November 2nd!
How do you connect with your audience when playing a show?
Every song I write comes from personal experience. When I play a show, I love telling the story about where that song came from. A lot of artists think that you can talk too much, and I’m sure there are a lot of scenarios where that’s true, but for me it’s crucial that people know the story and feel connected to my life and experience before they hear the music.
Out of all of the gigs you’ve played, does one stand out as the most memorable?
There are so many that stand out in the last year but I think the one that’s most memorable for me was when everything came full circle for me. About 10 years ago I was dragged to The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, CA to see Gavin DeGraw. It was that venue, his performance, and that overall experience that made me decide to become a songwriter and artist. This past May, I played The Coach House to a full room while out on tour with Tyrone Wells. It was about as a fulfilling moment as I’ve had as a musician and I’ll probably draw on that experience for a very long time!
If you could play at any venue with any musician or band, where would you play and with whom?
There are so many possible answers to this and they would all be true. That said, I would be lying if I didn’t say that I would want to play The Opry. To be honest, that room has such a rich history and legacy that I wouldn’t need a specific artist or band up there with me. Just standing on that stage would create the experience I want.
What is the next step musically? Do you have big plans after this fall tour?
The next step is to make another record. The play now is to get back to Nashville and into the studio at the beginning of 2014. The new batch of songs is almost ready and this record is gonna be so much fun. I’ll still include the love songs and heartbreak material that people expect from me, but this time there are fun, upbeat tunes that I haven’t really showed people yet. The “Out On the Lake” song, and the “Campfire Sing Along” song. I can’t wait to put a bunch of great musicians behind it and show people the direction we’re heading. COUNTRY! Then it’s out on the road for a Spring 2014 Tour to play the new material for everyone. 2014 is going to be a great year!
Brett will be at Eddie’s Attic on 11/2 with Noah Needleman. Get your tickets here!
Doors open at 6:00pm.
General Admission tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.
Online and phone sales end at 5:00pm on the day of the show.