Interview with Travis Tritt

Singer songwriter Travis Tritt will be bringing his southern rock country style to Salamanca for an outdoor show on Friday, June 3.

Tritt started out as one of the famous members of the country music “Class of ‘89”, which included Clint Black, Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson, which he talks about in the following interview.

You could say he was the “bad boy” of the group decked out in all leather and missing the trademark country symbol cowboy hat. The singer did it his way by infusing rock, blues and gospel into country, which had him dominating the charts in the early ‘90’s with songs like “Here’s A Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)”, “Anymore”, “Help Me Hold On” and his first hit, “Country Club”.

Tritt still tours, doing well over 200 shows a year and sells out venues wherever he plays. “Fans love hearing the big hits back-to-back,” says Tritt. “Our shows have always been high energy shows … we try and engage the audience as much as possible by taking them all the way back to the beginning and hit all the songs people know and bring them right up to our most recent stuff. It’s like they send up this ball of energy to the stage and we send it right back to them,” he added.

Winning the Top New Male Artist Award from Billboard in 1990 and the CMA Horizon Award (now known as the New Artist Award) in 1991, he became a member of country music’s most elite club, the Grand Ole Opry, in February of 1992.

Calling himself a “news junkie”, he loves watching 24-hour news channels when he is out on the road and in fact says, “If you see my tour bus you will more than likely see my TV on one of those channels.”

Today Tritt has three children with his wife Theresa Nelson, whom he married in 1997, and has found that balance between music and family, which he addresses in this interview.

As far as the music side of his life Tritt says, “I think the wonderful thing about music is the fact that music is something that you can always remember certain events of your life by … it’s the soundtrack that’s playing behind them when they were taking place. To me that’s the really unique thing about music … it should make you feel something and it should speak to you, regardless of the situation you’re dealing with.”

For ticket information visit www.senecacasinos.com and click on Seneca Allegany.  For more information on Tritt visit TravisTritt.com.

 

A CONVERSATION WITH TRAVIS TRITT

HULICK:You are 25+ years into your career and it appears you are still working and touring very steadily. What do you attribute your long-standing career to?

TRITT: I think that one of the things that kept me going and makes me recognizable is my voice doesn’t sound like anybody else. I think from the very beginning there was a quality in my voice that people recognized immediately, and I think that was true of a lot of the artists that came out around the same time I did … like Alan Jackson, Clint Black, Vince Gill and Garth Brooks. We all sounded very different from each other and I think that has kept all of us viable through the years.

HULICK:How do you manage to keep things fresh and different?

TRITT: What makes it new and fresh and exciting still is the response that you get back from the audience. They’re the ones that make it new every single night. So when you go on stage to perform and you see their reaction to each song and when you see them singing all the lyrics back to you, the excitement level … it’s just really, really special.

HULICK:Of all the songs you’ve written, are there any songs that have an underlying meaning that people may not know about?  A fact about a certain song you wrote?

TRITT:All of the songs I’ve written tend to be about the things that are so in my life. I try to write about personal experience, and if not from personal experience I try to write about things I’ve seen my friends and family go through and have to deal with. I’ve written a lot of love songs or loss of love songs. I think for the most part the songs are self-explanatory. If you go back to the very beginning, the first song I ever wrote was about losing a girlfriend on the beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama. I went down there with her on her senior trip and I thought that we were together and then as soon as we got there she ends up running off with a lifeguard! (laughs) … So I wrote the song called “Spend A Little Time” based on that. I wrote the song “Here’s A Quarter Call Someone Who Cares” in about 15 minutes, after I had gotten my second set of divorce papers at a very young age … I was only in my mid 20’s and had already been married and divorced once and I was going through that whole situation again. When the divorce papers came to my house, my wife was basically trying to get me to decide about how we were going to split up what we had, which wasn’t much … it was basically a pots-and-pans divorce, so we didn’t have much to fight over. So as I was reading those papers she called me and she was telling me that maybe we were rushing in to this too soon and maybe we should think about getting back together. I sat down and thought about that and I thought … you know what, there’s been way too much water that’s gone under the bridge for that to happen. So that’s where the line “you say you were wrong, to ever leave me alone; now you're sorry, you're lonesome and scared; and you say you'd be happy, if you could just come back home; well here's a quarter (call someone who cares)”.  That was the way I was feeling at the time.

HULICK:How do you balance your personal life and work life – being a father and husband while being a traveling recording artist?

TRITT:I have three kids, a daughter and two sons and when I first became a father, when my daughter was born in 1998, I wanted to see what being a father was all about. I took about two years off from being on the road from 1998 thru 2000 to stay home and be a dad. I got to see her first step and I got to hear her first word … it was really neat. And it made me realize how important family really is. We had our two sons after that and I realized that at the end of the day that family is the thing that was going to be the most important thing, at least for me, in my life. So when we are in the process of booking tours and booking concerts, I always try and block time out for special things and special days and I haven’t missed a birthday party, 4th of July, Christmas, Thanksgiving or a New Year’s by being on the road. So I really get to have the best of both worlds.

HULICK:To date, what are some of your greatest accomplishments and career highlights?

TRITT:I consider myself to be extremely fortunate in the fact that I have had so many great things happen to me over the years. I’ve always just wanted to be an artist, record and go out and play concerts to try and take the music to as many people as I possibly could. In the process of dreaming about all of that when I was first getting started, I could have never ever imagined that it would go as far as it has. Everybody wants to have a long lasting career that spans decades, and to still be able to have that is something that I’ve considered to be a tremendous gift, a tremendous blessing … I’m humbled by it, encouraged by it, very thankful for it. To be able to go out and do this after 25 years and get the same excitement and the same butterflies in your stomach right before you go on stage … all of that, to me, is a feeling that’s irreplaceable. For me I can’t imagine a better situation to be in than to love what you do for a living and go out there and do it every single night knowing that you’re doing what you enjoy and what the fans seem to enjoy as well. It makes you feel what God put you on this earth to do … so I’m very, very blessed.

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