Filmed at Austin, Texas’ Sam’s Town Point and with nods to old-time TV programs, “An Evening with Charley Crockett” is a piece that captures country in a classic, polished and utterly nostalgic way.
Crockett shares songs “Lily My Dear,” Wreck Me” and “The Man Who Time Forgot” in his TV special project that was years in the making. While quarantine may have pulled Crockett from his original plans of an intense tour schedule, it gave him the time needed to put together his latest video project.
“It’s an idea I’ve had for years that I just couldn’t quite pull together until releasing Welcome To Hard Times,” Crockett said. “Partly due to money and also because my whole game was playing shows every night of the week. 2020 has been the kind of year where the door is locked so you gotta go through the window and that’s allowed me to spend time making more videos for songs on the album.”
All three songs come from Welcome to Hard Times, Crockett’s latest album. COLLiDE talked with Crockett about Welcome to Hard Times, “An Evening with Charley Crockett” and hopes for the future. Read below for more:
Where did the inspiration for “An Evening with Charley Crockett” originally come from? My late grandpa listened to a lot of cowboy music and classic country songs and watching your video really reminded me of the music he would play on long drives.
Years ago I saw a clip from the classic TV program “Country Style USA” hosted by Faron Young. Skeeter Davis sang “Am I That Easy To Forget” into a rotary telephone and I never forgot it. I’ve spent most of my life by the highway side and in every motel room you can find a TimeLife infomercial selling CD box sets of country and soul music from back in the day. I always watch those on repeat.
Do you think this project would’ve been able to come together in “normal” times? It seems like for many artists, quarantine has brought the opportunity of new creative ventures and time to further develop ideas.
You’re right. Any other year we’d cut the record in 4 days and then play shows damn near every night of the year. This time I made all the music videos I wanted to and really got the word out about the album and would ya believe it? Hard Times has out sold everything I’ve ever done in 4 months time.
Which tracks on Welcome to Hard Times stand out the most to you? Why is that?
“Paint It Blue” really tells you where I was at, where I’m always at, but I think the title track was where I got lucky though.
You know, industry folks always just listen for whatever they think’s the most commercial. Whatever they can sell to radio programmers. Nobody wanted to push “Welcome To Hard Times” as a single. I had to put my foot down and make ’em do it.
We made it to the top 5 of the charts surrounded by songs that in my opinion just didn’t reflect the times were living in at all. But hey, I’ve always been a contrarian.
What do you hope changes for the music scene in 2021?
I’ve been playing for tips out of a guitar case for damn near twenty years now and all I can tell you is as soon as you get caught up in the scene, it ain’t about the music anymore.