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“Country Again”: How Thomas Rhett’s pandemic struggles led him back to authenticity

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Big Machine

For Thomas Rhett, his latest hit, “Country Again,” represents coming back to his roots in more ways than one.

The former ACM Entertainer of the Year confesses the inspiration came after a particularly difficult period, when he was “freaking out,” not knowing what to do since he couldn’t tour or make music, about a month after the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“My wife [Lauren] was like, ‘Honey, I think you have to just realize that you can’t do this right now. So maybe why don’t you just take a step back and live some life and then go try to write again?'” TR recalls. “And so I literally didn’t write a song for almost two months, which is the longest I’ve ever gone, I think, in my whole life.”

“And when I came back, the very first song I wrote was ‘Country Again,'” he reveals.

That also unleashed the floodgates for a double album, which begins with Country Again: Side A.

“Songs just kind of started flowing out of me,” TR explains. “And I think the writers were kind of on board with this vision.”

“And I think for the first time in a long time,” he continues, “I just was like, ‘What do I want to say? What do I want to write? If this had nothing to do with anything in the world, what would I say if nobody was in here?’ And these are some of the songs that just kind of flowed out of that.”

“And it was a really fun way to, just to be creative and write songs,” he adds.

The Country Again: Side A collection also includes his previous #1, “What’s Your Country Song,” with the new track, “Redneck Be Like,” presumably offering a glimpse into Side B.

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