This is the second chance Chase Bryant never thought he’d have, and by all objective measures, he shouldn’t be here right now. Yet, he’s never sounded more alive, more vital, more himself than he does now.
Born and raised in rural Orange Grove, TX, Bryant grew up dreaming of a life in music, inspired in part by his grandfather, who performed with Roy Orbison and Waylon Jennings, and his uncles, who co-founded the chart-topping band Ricochet. Those dreams came true faster than Bryant could have anticipated, though, and fame and success arrived with a hefty price. By his early 20s, he already had two Top 10 singles and tours with the likes of Brad Paisley, Brantley Gilbert and Tim McGraw under his belt, but it all felt inauthentic, like he was playing a character with expectations he could never live up to. The harder he pushed back, the worse things got, and soon, Bryant barely recognized the man he saw in the mirror.
Rock bottom came in a gas station parking lot when Bryant’s anxiety and depression led him to put a loaded .357 revolver to his head.
Regardless of how this note is written, a press item on the matter doesn’t even do this justice.
Bryant explains it best in this first-person narrative, heart-wrenching video: youtu.be/k7CoItb-Iqo
We’ll dive into the specifics a bit more in the coming weeks, especially this new music Bryant is on the verge of sharing.
Just to give a bit of insight, Bryant knew the new music called for a different approach in the studio too, and when his old pal Jon Randall signed on to produce, the two decided to embrace Bryant’s Texas roots and record at Austin’s famed Arlyn Studios. Backed by drummer J.J. Johnson (Gary Clark, Jr., Tedeschi Trucks Band) and guitarist Charlie Sexton (Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams), Bryant performed much of the material live on the floor, capturing the unmistakable energy and catharsis of the moment as he poured his heart and soul out into the microphone.
Bryant’s impeccable guitar playing can stand on its own, but the magic made when he and Sexton join forces is unrivaled. “One of the greatest musical experiences I’ve ever had was sitting behind the glass watching Chase and Charlie [Sexton] going at it on guitar,” says Randall. “The musicality between both of those guys and the way that they married their styles together was fantastic to watch.”
Bryant’s song “Upbringing" will be available this Fri., Feb. 26th via Green Iris Records. Pre-save here: https://orcd.co/upbringing
Read the full story at PEOPLE, here.