Fame often has a chilling effect on one’s psyche. However much as he’s done his entire life, when faced with a No. 1 major label debut album in 2014’s Ignite the Night, as well as a pair of Top 5 singles with the RIAA Platinum-certified “Ready Set Roll” and Goldcertified “Gonna Wanna Tonight,” Chase Rice turned his cheek and took the path less traveled. As he readily recounts, the country music maverick has only grown more selfaware, mature and grateful in the wake of his success. “I’m a different person in a lot of ways,” Rice says looking back at his younger self, who moved to Nashville following the sudden death of his father “having no clue what the hell I was doing,” wrote a batch of killer songs and went for broke in the country music industry. “I was searching,” Rice says. “I didn’t know who I was as an artist. But now, it’s a new me. It’s a whole new deal. Now I know exactly where I am in life.” He laughs. “Well, not exactly. But I’ve got a better idea, anyway.” The past few years have been monumental ones for Rice: following the release of Ignite the Night, the 31-year-old budding superstar toured the world with four massive headlining tours and stadium-show opening runs for country megastars including Kenny Chesney and Dierks Bentley. “I was just having fun. I was riding the wave,” he says.
Most recently, Rice released a new single from his forthcoming studio album, “Everybody We Know Does,” a rowdy rocker he says instantly took him back in his mind to the Fairview, North Carolina farm on which he was raised. “I wanted to have an in-the-moment song of what me and my friends do and how we live,” he says of the song, which his ultra-dedicated fanbase has already responded to with adoration. “People showing up, being so passionate about my music, that makes me proud of this life and what we – my band, my team and I – have built, man,” he continues. “When crowds are showing up singing non-singles louder than the singles, that gives me the confidence that they’ve got my back and that these songs are their lives, too.” Despite his swelling popularity, Rice still says he sees himself and his longtime band as underdogs. It’s a healthy mindset, he says, that keeps the fire burning in his belly. “It allows you to still have that drive, still have that reason to keep trying to move forward and make the music better,” he explains. “When I’m the underdog, look out. When
someone tells me we’re not going to do something, you’d better get your ass ready, because we’re gonna do it!”