Casey Barnes is a country music artist from Gold Coast.
Currently Australia's #1 independent musician as well as the most played country artist on mainstream radio (only behind Keith Urban), Gold Coast Music Award's 2020 Artist Of The Year Casey Barnes is about to embark on his biggest run of headline shows and festival appearances since COVID.
2020 saw Casey release his most recent album 'Town Of A Million Dreams', while his current single is the jaunty, rollicking sing-along magic of 'Come Turn Me On' that is set to feature on his next studio record.
The past 12-24 months for you as an artist; you've achieved quite a lot and entered the mainstream conscious. Has it been a challenge adapting to this new-found success while maintaining the same elements that allowed you to arrive at this space? I've actually really enjoyed it to be honest.
It was a pivotal moment last year when we made the decision to push ahead with releasing my album in the midst of a global pandemic and not being able to tour; but I'm so glad we did as it turned out to be the best thing we could have done.
People were still listening to music, more than ever actually, we learnt to adapt to the landscape, get creative and it's been amazing to see the support not just within the country music community but now also mainstream as well largely thanks to the recent radio support.
Your career has a had a slow build to your success, working away at your craft for 15-plus years; that work behind the scenes must be really validating now that you're beginning to achieve so much? Yes, and funnily enough I wouldn't change it for the world. Timing is everything and sometimes it's a double-edged sword when success comes really quickly.
Quite often it can be short-lived whereas I've been fortunate to learn plenty of lessons along the way. If all of this had happened 15 years ago, I don't think I would have been ready.
It's been great to work on becoming a better songwriter, teaming up with the right producers, developing a new live show, understanding how the industry works more and getting the right team around you.
What does it mean to be the country's #1 independent artist, ahead of the likes of The Rubens, Teskey Brothers and others? Definitely really proud of this one. It's tough sometimes going out there as an independent artist when you're up against some of the bigger acts signed to major labels, but we've got an amazing team at Chugg Music who work their backsides off and we've all built to this moment together. I've got a lot to thank them for.
Behind Keith Urban, you're the most played Australian country artist on mainstream radio; that's a phenomenal achievement; does it blow your mind how many people are now connecting with your music? Ha, now you put it like that it sure does! It's tough as a country artist to get your music played on mainstream radio, but with this latest single we've had incredible support across just about every commercial network in the country.
So I'm extremely grateful and even more so that people are connecting to the song. It's also nice to see mainstream radio embracing this new wave of country music coming through too.
What's it like having a living legend like Michael Chugg as your manager; both professionally with the doors he can open for you as well as the personal side of the relationship? Ah where do I start here ha! He's honestly the best thing to ever happen to me in my career.
To have someone like Chuggi believe in you as an artist and your music is pretty amazing. You'd struggle to find another person in our industry that's more passionate about Australian music and his goal of putting it on a global stage. He's not only a manager, he's like a second Dad. Bloody love him!
You're about to embark on a mini tour of QLD-NSW; given the current world we live in, that must be so exciting to have live shows to look forward to? Beyond excited to kick this tour off for so many reasons. We're extremely lucky that live music is coming back, restrictions have eased and we can get back to doing what we love.
We weren't really able to tour the album a lot last year, so this is finally the best chance for us to get out on the road as a band; get into a lot of these regional areas that have been starved of live music and play some shows. Can't wait to get into it!
Given the time away from fans, anything extra special you'll be adding to these performances? Absolutely! We've actually been working on a brand-new live show, specifically for this tour. It's actually really good as fans have had the last few months to digest the latest album and the new single (learn all the words ha), so it'll be great to get out there and play it live.
Where are you at with your next studio album; can fans expect something later this year? Really enjoying writing a heck of a lot lately and already well and truly into recording the next album.
'Come Turn Me On' is actually the first new single off what will be the next album and we've got another two, three singles set to come out before the end of the year; then the album shortly afterwards.
Creatively, are there any non-country genres in particular you want to incorporate into the Casey Barnes sound? At the end of the day, I love the fact that a 'good song' is good song, no matter what the genre. I grew up listening to a lot of country music but I also listened to pop, rock and everything in between so I actually enjoy incorporating bits of all of those elements in my own stuff.
Thanks for your time Casey; anything else you'd like to add? It was so great to chat to you guys; and can't wait to see everyone at these upcoming shows.
Casey Barnes 2021 Tour Dates
Sat 19 Jun - Hamilton Hotel (Brisbane) Fri 25 Jun - Red Hot Country Festival @ NightQuarter (Sunshine Coast) Sat 26 Jun - Miami Marketta (Gold Coast) Sat 3 Jul - Leichhardt Hotel (Rockhampton) Fri 9 Jul - Paddo RSL (Sydney) Sat 10 Jul - Central Coast Stadium Fri 16 Jul - Dalrymple Hotel (Townsville) Sat 17 Jul - The Edge Hill Tavern (Cairns) Fri 13 Aug - Mount Isa Rodeo Thu 26 Aug - Gympie Music Muster (Sunshine Coast) Fri 27 Aug - Gympie Music Muster (Sunshine Coast) Fri 1 Oct - Savannah In The Round (Mareeba, QLD) Sun 31 Oct - Goulburn Valley Country Festival (Shepparton) 12-14 Nov - Groundwater Country Music Festival (Gold Coast)