Dylan Marlowe Talks New Music, Touring With HARDY, Wedding Planning & More
This rising country star is experiencing a year of growth, both personally and professionally.
Dylan Marlowe; Photo by Matthew Berinato
Dylan Marlowe started the year off strong with the release of his song, “Record High,” which had an incredible streaming debut. This track, which the rising star dubbed his “favorite song,” takes a slower approach in order to showcase the truest form of pain – heartbreak.
Co-written by Marlowe with Abram Dean, Screech and Zach Abend, “Record High” features a sophisticated delivery of Marlowe’s tender vocals as he narrates the aftermath of a dramatic exit from a past love.
“’Cause I ain’t never seen gravel fly that high,” he sings in the chorus. “Ain’t never seen more tears in a pair of green eyes / I ain’t never seen taillights burn that bright / Never heard her cuss more than she did last night / I ain’t never, it’s gotta be a record high goodbye.”
This was followed up by two new songs, “Grew Up Country” and “Empty Shotgun – Mr. Mechanic.” While catching up with Country Now, Marlowe explained that “Grew Up Country” represents simplicity and his small-town roots in Statesboro, Georgia, while “Empty Shotgun” brings a more high-energy feel to his live shows with its catchy lyrics and hard-hitting melody.
On top of all the exciting things he has in the works for his career, Marlowe is awaiting the day he gets to say “I Do” to his fiancée, Natalie. Since 2017, the pair have put in the effort to make their relationship work, even if that meant having to do long-distance for some time.
The lovebirds announced their engagement in November of 2022 via Instagram, and now, they are anxiously awaiting their May 19 wedding date.
Dylan is currently on the road for his first headlining tour, but beginning August 31, he will be heading out on HARDY’s the mockingbird & THE CROW FALL Tour. This trek will be followed by a run with Jordan Davis on select dates.
For more on everything Dylan Marlowe discussed with Country Now, including his latest set of music, making the move to Nashville, plans for an upcoming collection, and more, continue reading the Q&A below.
Earlier this year you released “Record High” and received a great response. How does it feel to see fans fall in love with it?
It’s awesome. I mean, you know, that’s what you hope for. That’s what you write for and it was just really cool. I’m still trying to figure out why it resonated so well and why, you know, that one does and why others don’t and all the math of it, but it’s pretty badass. It’s been awesome to watch it do its thing and just see it kind of take its own little life. Hopefully it has a lot more life left to it.
What was your experience like filming the music video for this song?
It was fun. It was the first time I’ve ever had to be the actor in the video. Usually, we have people doing that, but they were like, “Hey, do you want to try to be the, you know, the lead guy?” And I was like, “Alright, I’m down for a challenge, I guess.” So it was really fun to get to do that and work with those guys. It was awesome.
Your latest set of releases, “Grew Up Country” and “Empty Shotgun – Mr. Mechanic,” why did you decide to drop these two songs at once?
I teased “Empty Shotgun” on socials a few months ago and it kind of popped off and did its thing. We’ve been playing it live and I knew I wanted to release it, but also, I wanted to make sure when I followed “Record High,” that I followed it with something with some bones, I guess. “Empty Shotgun,” I still love that song and it’s one of my favorites, but it’s just really fun to play live. The instrumentation, it’s insane. It’s really fun. But I wanted to like really say something as well, to follow “Record High” for kinda all the new people that came in. So “Grew Up Country” is pretty much like an autobiography of my life and I wanted to kinda have like a really fun, up-tempo song and then also have “Grew Up Country” to kinda let the new people know who I am.
Speaking of growing up in the country, you were raised in Georgia, but you’ve lived in Nashville for a few years now, so what was that transition like for you?
It was tough at first. Back home, like if I didn’t have anything to do, I could just go fishing or hunting somewhere, but up here, when I first got here, I didn’t really have anywhere to do all that stuff. I mean, it is part of a huge part of who I am, and I didn’t really have anywhere to do any of that. So it took a second to get acclimated to being here, but, you know, once I’ve found some places to do all the things I like to do, some rivers and some woods, I definitely was a lot better off. Now I have a house on my own, a little north of town, so I have all those things out there by my house now. So it’s pretty great now.
What was it that gave you the motivation to finally make the move?
Really my dad. I was just very hesitant, I think. I was like a really big homebody, kinda like hometown homebody. I didn’t really like to be in the house, but I didn’t like to leave my hometown. I actually just got my passport the other day. But my dad, he kind of kicked me outta the nest, in a good way. I was working for him and he was like, “man, if you’re gonna move to Nashville, you might as well do it before you start getting older and go ahead and get early on it.” My dad was a drummer in a band before he had me, and they had me at a pretty young age so I think they kind of wanted me to be able to live the dream that he didn’t get to really live out. I think he’s living it through me now. He’s at a bunch of the shows and him and my mom were great at kind of pushing me out of my comfort zone and putting me up here.
Going a bit deeper on “Empty Shotgun – Mr. Mechanic,” can you talk more about the writing process and what you’re hoping fans will take away from it?
I think we wrote that on a writer’s retreat and for “Empty Shotgun,” I was fresh off the Dylan Scott tour, which was our first tour, and I was like, I gotta start writing some more songs with energy and just with up-tempo that like rocks really hard. I feel like I just grew up on a lot of that old southern rock and Nickelback and all that, and also with a lot of country, so I wanted to just kind of take my own little hit at having something, you know, a little heavier. It was really for me, I guess, and to have energy in the live show.
Along with these songs, you have been teasing on social media that you’ve got more music in the works for this year. So what can we expect from your upcoming releases? Any full projects in the works?
So the goal is, I would like to have a record out by the time we go out with HARDY, whether it’s a record or an EP. We’re going in to cut three songs on May 1st and three or four songs on May 10th, and we’ll probably package all those together with the few that are already out now. And I mean, it’s hard to explain just how pumped I am, but on May 1st we’re cutting three songs that are, I feel like they’re just all up and they’re all giving it a good stab at radio, for sure…If “Record High” doesn’t make it on the radio, one of those three is definitely gonna be one of my efforts to do it. So I’m really excited about it.
You’re currently on your first-ever headlining run right now. How have those shows been going so far?
They’ve been great. It’s been really fun. Going and touring with Cole (Swindell) and Dylan (Scott) was awesome but there’s something about going to a room with 200-300 people that are there for you. It brings a whole other level of energy. It’s been awesome to get to see people like sing “Record High.” These are some of the only shows we’ve played since that song’s been out, so I’m pumped about it.
Soon you’re going to be playing to a lot bigger crowds when you head out with HARDY. What is your relationship like with him?
We’ve hung out a few times, we’ve written once, we chat a little bit, you know, texting back and forth. He’s just one of the coolest, most genuine people. He’s just so down to earth and I can’t wait to go out there. I feel like his crowd is definitely a crowd that I could pull from, you know, a lot younger, a lot fresher of a crowd. I’m super stoked about it. Every tour seems to just be more exciting and more exciting, so I’ve been really blessed.
Aside from the music side of things, you got engaged to Natalie last year. So how’s the wedding planning been going?
I definitely picked an interesting time to get married and sign a record deal and try to write a record, but I’m making it work. Nat’s been a freaking angel in all of it. I mean, she’s been planning a lot of it, which granted, at the end of the day, there’s a lot of things that I could care less about, like what color the chairs or the plates are, or the napkins and stuff. So it’s that kinda stuff that she has to figure out anyway, so she’s been doing a lot of that. It’s been good though. I think now I’m at the point where, I think we get married in almost a month, May 19th, and I’m just ready to get married now. I think we’re in this stagnant period of like, well, everything’s pretty much good to go. Now we’re just, cause we don’t live together yet, so we’re just living out of two houses and it’ll be a whole lot better when we get married. It has been exciting though. It’s gone by pretty fast.
Fans can keep up with Dylan Marlowe on Instagram.
Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.