Thomas Rhett On How A Fishing Trip Helped Inspire New Song 'Country Again'

A few weeks ahead of the release of the first part of his double album, Thomas Rhett is giving fans another taste of the project via its title track and newest single, "Country Again."

"Country Again" is all about slowing down and all of the time Rhett spent at home over the last year in Nashville with his family. He sings in the chorus, "Yeah, I love me some California, but it sure ain't Tennessee/ And my roots down there in Georgia, yeah they start missing me/ And I wouldn't trade the things I've done or the places that I've been/ Man it feels good to be country again."

Rhett tells iHeartRadio that is new song is "just about slowing down and rediscovering what's important in your life," and that there were plenty of scenarios over the last year that helped put it all into perspective. He explained, "When I was out at the farm, this was probably a year and a half ago, Willa Gray and Ada wanted to fish with me. And so I rigged them up some little Zipcar reels. And even though we didn't catch any fish, I remember watching them and being like, man, this is what life's about, and this is my priority right here is to be the best dad that I can be, in soaking in these moments. That's kind of what prompted this whole idea around 'Country Again.' And then it kinda turned into that song, obviously. But, then it kind of turned into kind of the centerpiece for this whole entire project."

Thomas added of the idea behind his Country Again project, "I think for the last five or six years, I've been running at such a fast pace, kind of just saying yes to everything and everybody, and not really ever having a lot of time to just kind of slow down for myself and for my wife and for my kids. And, I would say somewhere around mid 2019, it just kinda hit me in the face of like, man, when you're kind of forced to not be able to work and not be able to tour, you actually have to sit with yourself and be okay with who you are, cause that's who you get to be with — you and your wife and your kids. And, I think this transformation that was started happening in me in 2019 really came to fruition in 2020. And that kind of new discovery of self, just new discovery of learning how to sit, learning how to be content, learning how to not grind so hard all the time, it turned into this whole thought of this 'Country Again' concept, and it was a really neat self-reflecting time for me that it made its way into song, and then made its way onto this album."

Over the last year, Rhett and his wife Lauren have created many memories going on adventures together. He tells us that the family visited places like Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park, the Salt Flats in Utah, in addition to plenty of fishing and hiking trips. He is hoping that his kids will continue to have a sense of adventure when it comes to being outdoors. He explained:

'There [are] multiple 'country things' I want to share with my kids, and we actually got to accomplish some of that in 2020. We took our first family road trip just across the country, got to see the Salt Flats in Utah, got to go to Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park. And for me, I want my kids to really enjoy being outside with their mom and dad. I want them to enjoy hiking with us and camping with us and fishing with us. And, I want them to watch their mom and dad, the actively outdoor people and just full of life, and really just having that heart of adventure. I want our kids to really learn that from me and Lauren, and that's something that we have put a lot of weight into."

Rhett is set to release the first part of his double album, Country Again (Side A), which follows 2019's Center Point Road, on April 30th, and it includes previously-released songs "Growing Up" and "Want It Again."

In announcing the new music, he explained in a statement on social media of the project, "Country Again: Side A to me feels like coming home. These were the things 19 year old me wanted to be able to say, sing, and share with y'all but hadn't lived the life enough to do it yet. Today I am more centered and aware of what's important in life than I ever have been and I hope you hear & feel that in this music."