By Emily Wagner
Illinois native, Drew Baldridge, moved to Nashville when he was 18 to chase his dream of singing country music.
One of Baldridge’s greatest strengths as a singer-songwriter is the music that he makes is about real things that connect with people differently than other songs. Whether it’s about the importance of respecting women in “Somebody’s Daughter” to singing about the nostalgia days of our youth in “Senior Year,” he’s able to connect with country fans on a deeper level than most.
Baldridge was gracious enough to take some time and answer some of our questions about his music, his inspiration, and what makes him who he is.
Growing up in the Midwest, do you think that shapes the type of music you write or record? You don’t find too many country artists that grew up outside the South but I think it shows just how universal country music has become.
Yes I think growing up in the Midwest definitely shapes my music! I grew up farming with my grandpa so a lot of music comes from there.
How important is it to you to write your own music?
It’s pretty important to write my own music, but I have cut outside songs that I didn’t write. If I hear a song that I didn’t write and I love it, I will cut it. The best song always wins in my opinion. Some of our greatest country artists ever always just pick the best song and sing it. They don’t write everything.
Who were some of your biggest musical influences growing up, country or other genres?
Josh Turner, Brooks and Dunn, and Michael Jackson. I know they were super opposite but I just loved the entertainment value that MJ had and the amazing storytelling songs of Brooks and Dunn. I loved Josh Turner for his baritone vocal and his openness for Christianity.
What was life like those first few years living in Nashville, and what gave you the confidence and support that you could do this and be successful?
Life was hard when I first moved here. Some people are telling you you’re crazy for doing it and just finding money and a way to live was hard. I think my hometown area people was the support that I needed to keep going. They always supported every song I put out and every show I played in that area. I’m so lucky to always have their support.
You recently got engaged, so it’s safe to say quarantine life is going pretty well for you. You wrote a song about your now fiancé Katie, called “Before You,” with Chris and Preston from LoCash. Talk about that writing process and the reception you’re getting from the song.
The reception from “Before You” has been amazing. Everyone has been reaching out about how much they love it. And that writing process was unique.
So we were eating lunch one day and Chris was talking about his wife and he said, “Baby Before You I was a little crazy.” I just looked at him and said that’s a song. We all feel that way. So we went into the green room of the place we were playing a write the song. We got off the road that week and I took it home and changed some of the lines to make it more personal for me and Katie.
Hopefully this means there are more projects and new music still on the way for 2020?
There will definitely be more music coming 🙂
Fast money questions:
Favorite album: Favorite album is impossible to pick. I did really love the I Melt Rascal Flatts album when it first came out.
Dream collaboration: Bruno Mars
New up and coming artist we should all know: Y’all should know Lainey Wilson.
Favorite concert: Favorite concert was probably my first when I was young – Craig Morgan
Favorite song you’ve written: God’s Front Porch
A song that you wish you would have written: Red Dirt Road