Thomas Rhett Biography

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Things happened quickly. Aldean cut Thomas Rhett’s "I Ain’t Ready To Quit" for My Kinda Party, which was released in November 2010 – just eight months after Thomas Rhett signed his publishing deal. Even then, Vaughn was already taking Thomas Rhett around Music Row to play acoustic auditions as an artist in record-company conference rooms. And they always got some interest.

When he played for the Big Machine Label Group, which includes The Valory Music Co., it took only three songs before President and CEO Scott Borchetta announced he wanted Thomas Rhett on the roster.

"Scott doesn’t mess around," Thomas Rhett says. "The next day, my lawyer called and said Big Machine had made an offer."

That also gave Thomas Rhett the reins to make an album. They teamed him with producer Jay Joyce, who’s worked as a producer and/or guitarist with Eric Church, Cage The Elephant and Miranda Lambert. The results on Thomas Rhett’s debut are a rhythmic, grooving, infectious amalgam of styles that appreciates country’s roots and challenges its perceived limitations at the same time.

The music was captured at Joyce’s home studio, which provided a loose, informal ambience that found its way into the tracks.

"It’s recorded in his basement," Thomas Rhett says. "It’s dark, a couple lamps on and candles burning and incense everywhere. We had some of the best players, and it was pretty much a big jam session until we found something that worked."

The album veers from the clever wordplay of "Would Ya" to the high energy of "Something To Do With My Hands" to the playful grooves of "Front Porch Junkie" and "All-American Middle Class White Boy." But as much as he’s about having a good time, "Beer With Jesus" – a rough-edged ballad that seeks elusive spiritual clarity – demonstrates the enormous depth that lies under all the fun stuff.

That’s appropriate for Thomas Rhett, who’s discovered that music – despite his insistence on avoiding it – is a central part of his destiny.

"I think I’ve been directed here for a reason," he surmises. "I still don’t know why. I don’t know if it’s to be some big star or if it’s to make a difference in somebody’s life along the way or to make somebody’s Friday night entertaining. It doesn’t really matter. It’s a journey, and I’m learning something new every step along the way."

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