Today, Brett Eldredge released his seventh studio album, Songs About You. This project follows Sunday Drive, the record that began his journey to finding confidence in himself.
With a career spanning over 12 years, the “Holy Water” singer is now in a place of reaching his own self-acceptance, which is showcased throughout the new album. Sitting on the couch where so many of his writing sessions take place, Eldredge joined Country Now and other media outlets to discuss the makings behind this candid project.
Sunday Drive was written during a time of reflection on the things that have held him back in life, both mentally and physically. Since that project, Eldredge has taken the time to work on himself outside of the music world in order to come back a better version of himself.
“I always got to the place where I want to make everyone happy and please them and make them feel good, and then I felt empty,” he shared.
Today’s release is a product of the work he has put into finding self-love and becoming an advocate for mental health. He explained that sharing these unapologetically real songs is worth the risk of being vulnerable in the public eye.
“I still have my days, but going through making this record, I’ve never felt more confident in myself and strongly about the music I’m making and more importantly, the person that I am away from all the music.”
Not only is Songs About You a space for Eldredge to be honest about his emotions, but it also challenged him to push the boundaries and embrace any fear that comes his way.
“I hope people look back on me as somebody who wasn’t afraid to try and wasn’t afraid to dig deeper into their heart and their emotions,” Eldredge told Country Now. “Hopefully, I make something that always makes the listener feel something more than just a song that was a hit or a song they heard on the radio all the time. Instead, a song that made them feel something deep down. That’s so important to me.”
Starting off with a celebratory anthem titled, “Can’t Keep Up,” Eldredge explained that this record was made to be listened to from top to bottom. With each track, the vulnerability becomes more and more apparent and takes you on what he described as an “adventure.”
The Illinois native dives deep into the topics of mental health, love and heartbreak, emulating real emotions in a way he’s never done before. Not only did it serve as a form of therapy for him, but it also has the strong potential to do the same for his fans.
“If I’m not writing to use it as therapy, then I’m listening. Writing, I go through stages where I’m deep in a certain place in my life where I’m reflective. Sunday Drive is a very reflective time of just breaking down what makes me who I am and things that hold me back and all that.”
“This record was kind of stepping into the confident zone of my life of being there for myself and knowing my heart and just stepping out there with that,” he continued. “I think all those become parts of therapy.”
Even the approach to the writing process for this project looked a bit different for Eldredge. For this record, he chose to record a lot of the vocals on the same day they were written. This allowed him to capture the excitement and raw feelings he got from creating the music. This turned out to be such a win, that he will most likely continue this approach going forward with the next set of new music.
The chorus of the first track on the album, “Can’t Keep Up,” was written in just one morning, when the lyrics suddenly flowed out of him.
“That was a song about kind of pushing yourself,” he said. “Letting yourself have fun and dance a little bit and really not take life so serious sometimes.”
“Hideaway” is another track that captured a memorable moment in time. It was written while Eldredge was staying in a house in Montana and sitting by the fire on a snowy winter day. The recorded version on the record features some real sound effects, like the fire crackling behind him. This song captured his excitement and the overall feeling of the cozy setting that day.
Being able to share emotions in songs like these with his fans has become “empowering.” He hopes fans find as much “healing and comfort” in this project as he did.
The overall goal with the wide variety of topics on this record is to create music that makes people really feel all their emotions and make them “dance when they wanna dance and cry when they need to cry.”
“I wanted to make a record that encourages others to really find that self-acceptance and not be so hard on yourself,” Eldredge explained. “There’re songs on this record that are about standing up for yourself against the worries in your mind and the bullies out there and just being there for you. I think that’s such an important thing.”
The album starts in a fun, upbeat way and ends with discovery in the form of one of his favorites – “Where the Light Meets the Sea.” This song nearly made the cut on Sunday Drive, but instead, it found its rightful home on Songs About You.
“At the end of the day, I can go to the bed and think, man, I’m proud of that record. And I think a lot of people are going to be really moved by it,” Eldredge expressed.
Beginning on June 19, he will embark on his Songs About You Tour, just days after the album release. He’ll kick things off in his home state of Illinois at an annual county festival held right outside the city of Chicago. From there, he will travel across North America performing his latest releases and finding that connection with fans on a whole new level.
“To be able to go back to my home state and my favorite city, it feels so right to start like that,” he said in excitement.