We had the chance to speak to country singer-songwriter Craig Campbell about his brand new record “Never Regret” out on May 7th. The “Family Man” Georgia native called us to talk all about his brand new sophomore record, if there was a difference between this record and his last, his brand new single, why respect is so important to him, and how Luke Bryan crashed his set shirtless.
Check out our exclusive interview with Craig below and let us know what you think of his new album. Did you pre-order your copy yet? What’s your favorite Craig Campbell tune?
Do you feel like there’s a big difference with your new album when compared to your last?
Not a big difference. There’s definitely a different just in some of the things I’m talking about; the subject matter and topics. The production is a little bigger, it’s going to sound bigger on your radio. That was our goal, we wanted it to keep it the same but make it different.. if that’s at all possible. I think we’ve pulled it off.
Have you been surprised at all with the success of “Outta My Head”?
Not at all. I guess the surprise with me is that it ain’t doing better than it is. It’s really close to being in the top 30, and we’ve really worked hard to get the single up there. I’m thinking that once it gets into the top 30 it’s going to take off. I’m not surprised at all, it’s a hit song.
Is there a song that you consider to be your favorite on the new record?
You know, there’s a couple of them on there that I have special connections to. We listen to hundreds and hundreds of song to try to narrow it down to these twelve, all twelve were favorites, so it’s hard to just pick one of them. “When She Grows Up” is a special song to me, I wrote that about my little girls. “When Ends Don’t Meet” is a song about the struggles of a husband and wife and making it work while still having each other to lean on. It’s very much me and my wife.
Each song has a meaning behind it and there’s a reason why it’s on the album.
Now, you wrote with your wife on one of the tracks…
Yeah, we wrote a song called “Topless.” Which, you know, if there’s going to be somebody to write that song with, it’s perfect to have my wife with me on it.
How special was it to have one of your daughters open up “When She Grows Up”?
Oh, that’s what I wanted. I’ve had that recording for a couple of years now and I have been waiting for the perfect spot to put it. When we recorded “When She Grows Up,” it was perfect, and I sent it to my producers and said “y’all, we really need to put this on this song, whether it be on the front or the end.” I am so glad that it made it on the album.
How was Europe and were you surprised about country fans overseas?
I wasn’t surprised, I’ve just never been so I didn’t know what to think. They love, love, love country music over there, and actually, they love more of a traditional sound. They had me and Martina McBride, and between the two of us I think they got what they wanted. I had some fun over there, that’s for sure.
You’ve been on some pretty tours, but do you have a favorite story about Luke Bryan or Blake Shelton?
I’ve only been at one show of Blake’s, but Blake and Luke were both at that one. I’ve done seven or eight shows this past year with Luke. I will say that there was this festival and I was there, Justin Moore, Lee Brice, and Luke were there. Anyways, when I was doing my set Luke came out, he didn’t tell me he was coming out, but he came out without his shirt on so I immediately became invisible to all those girls. All they saw was Luke with his shirt off.. but it was pretty cool.
So, how did you come up with your album title? Is there a special meaning behind choosing “Never Regret”?
Well, there is a song on the album titled “Never Regret.” Ironically, the title of the album and that song really don’t have anything in common. I thought about it and thought about just me and my journey while I’ve been in Nashville, and all the decisions I’ve made, and all the thing I’ve done, that have brought me here. I love where I am and I don’t regret anything I’ve done. I live my life and that’s the way I try to run my career: no regrets, I never regret anything I do.
You co-wrote six of the songs on this record, is it important to you to write your own songs?
You know, its important I think to be able to throw those songs on there and try to give my perspective, to see how I feel about certain things. At the same time, even if I wrote it or not, I try to sing the songs I can relate to and I feel like we’ve chose twelve really great songs and I just got lucky that six of them were mine.
Now this one is a little bit more of a fun question, if you could hit the road on your dream tour.. who would you hit the road with?
Now everybody wants to tour with George Strait, especially now that he’s on his last Cowboy Rides Away Tour. I’d love to be on that one. I’ve done several shows with Luke, but it’s always fun to get down with him. I’ve done several with Alan Jackson, but its always a blast. It don’t matter to me, man, as long as there’s somebody out there to listen to me sing.
If you could write with anybody, past or present, who would it be?
Oh, wow. Past or present… Kris Kristofferson would be neat to write with, just to say “I wrote a song with Kris Kristofferson.” It may suck, but hey.
I saw that respect is a big thing for you, can you share a little bit why?
Well, respect is something that I was always taught, whether it was with my elders or just the female being, to respect my momma and my fans. I think my fans deserve respect too by just dressing up. Whenever they come to a show, they spend money on tickets, and I just think it’s important for me to look my best. I don’t know if that has anything to do with respect, but.
I read that “Outta My Head” was actually sent to you by mistake. Is that true?
Well, it was already on hold by another artist. Another artist was going to record it, but we called those guys and said “hey, we’re going into the studio next week,” and they were gracious enough to give it to us to record that same week.