Drew Parker is a true country boy, and it’s something he hopes stands out in his songs. Within his short time in Nashville, he has accomplished milestones that up and coming artists only dream about.
In 2017, Parker signed a publishing deal with Warner Chappell/River House, has toured and co-written with his friend and one of country music’s biggest stars Luke Combs, and scored a multi national No. 1 song with the song “Homemade,” recorded by Jake Owen and co-written with Bobby Pinson, Jared Mullins, and Ben Goldsmith.
Expecting to debut his EP While You’re Gone earlier this year, 2020 had other plans for the country artist. Parker found a silver lining in his down time though, “I became a dad back in March to a little girl and I’ve gotten to watch her grow up…where as if I were on the road I would have missed all of that,” he says. Parker, an artist that knows he is where he is today because of his fans, says this is the longest period of time in his career he has gone without being out on the road and can’t wait to play for the fans again, but looks on the bright side and says, “getting to spend it with my family has made it all worth-while.”
Here at Celeb Secrets Country, we caught up with Drew to chat about his debut EP, learned what a BP PBR is, and more. Let us know if you’re loving “While You’re Gone” by either leaving a reaction at the bottom of the post or by sending us a tweet at @CS_Country.
You can learn more about Drew by giving him a follow on Instagram.
Celeb Secrets Country: Tell us about your EP While You’re Gone.
Drew Parker: “I’ve been in Nashville for 5 years now and the EP is 7 songs I’ve written over those last 5 years. I waited for the perfect time to put them out; they’re some of my most favorite songs I’ve ever written and I’m super proud of this project. I just felt like now was the right time to put them out. The songs tell a lot about who I am and what kind of music I grew up on. It’s a very nostalgic feeling for me, listening to these songs, because it takes me back to being a kid and the feeling I got listening to country music as a kid and I think you can hear that in the songs. There’s some personal songs on there, one that I wrote 3-4 years ago that had a whole different meaning then it does now. When I wrote it then it was just a good love story, now this song (“The Runway”) took on a whole new meaning when I found out my wife was pregnant. It has a whole different meaning; it’s like a love letter to my daughter encouraging her to chase her dreams. Then there’s a song called “Hell Yeah Say When I’m In” that when you listen to it, you’ll find out a lot about me. I love the Braves, I love Willie Nelson, I love The Dukes of Hazzard; I love a lot of things I grew up on. It’s a very personal project. We were wanting to get it out earlier in the year while I was on the road with Luke Combs, but CoVid kind of had some different plans. I’ve been wanting to put this out for a very long time – thanks to the fans for being so encouraging and staying faithful.”
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CSC: What is one thing you want fans to take away from listening to this EP?
DP: “I want people to understand how passionate I am about country music. I’m a country music fan first and I think that’s what comes out in my songs. When I write songs I try to write songs that I would want to ride around and listen to. I want people to understand how much I care about country music and how much time I spent on the songs. I think you can hear that in the songs and I hope that everybody that listens to it can tell their own personal story with each song. Whether it make them forget about CoVid or whatever is going on in their life, I hope it makes them tell about the good times going on in their life.”
CSC: This EP was co-written with Jameson Rodgers, what was it like writing with him and are there any fun secrets from the writing room you can tell us?
DP: “I love writing with Jameson, he’s one of my best buddies and we always get good stuff together. For me, [a secret is] writing with people who have similar interests as you. As long as you keep yourself around good people and people that you have similar interests with, that is a recipe for good songs in my opinion. As well as people that want to tell the same kind of stories in the same way; I love being able to tell a story in a song in a way that nobody’s ever told that story before and using images that nobody’s used before. One of the fan favorite lines in the song ‘While You’re Gone’ is a line that says, ‘I’ll be kickin’ it with the BP PBR’ and I’ve gotten a lot of messages about that line asking ‘what is a BPPBR’ and all it is is a case of PBR from a BP gas station. I love finding cool ways to say things that have never been said.”
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CSC: You’re returning to tour with Luke Combs in 2021 and you’ve written quite a few songs for him as well. Can you tell us how the two of you were introduced?
DP: “We met in either early 2015 or late 2014, I can’t remember which date exactly, when I got put on to open a show for him in Rome, Georgia. There were about 80 people in the room and back then, nobody but those 80 people knew who Luke Combs was. Since then I’ve gotten to watch his career explode. We met that night and kind of just, hit it off. Again it goes back to finding people with the same interests; we bonded over Keith Whitley. Over the next year or so after that I started driving back and forth from Georgia to Nashville and writing songs with him. We had the same interests and built a friendship off of that.”
CSC: Before quarantine you were on tour with Luke Combs as well. What is one thing you have learned about the music industry just by being around him?
DP: “I think the most interesting thing I’ve learned from him is that man takes care of his fans. We all know this, that we wouldn’t have anything without our fans. Me and Luke have the same manager and he has taught us to take care of our fans, and Luke has made a good example of how to do that. We know deep down how important our fans are; we wouldn’t have any of this without them and our manager kind of instilled that in us but getting to watch Luke and the creative ideas that he comes up with on how to take care of his fans – he’s taught me a lot about that. What’s fun about getting to write songs with Luke is you’re able to be so honest. Don’t ever put a line in a song that’s not completely honest and luckily I found him when I first moved to town and we were able to do that from the get go because that’s all I ever wanted to do in a song; tell my story in the most honest way.”
Listen to Drew Parker’s “While You’re Gone” EP below: