After ten studio albums, two EPs, and a live studio project, Granger Smith has decided to step away from country music.
Despite his viral success in the scene, Smith “intends to serve his local church under the teaching, council and leadership of his pastor and elders while he continues work on a Master’s degree at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary along with public speaking and authorship,” with the Like A River Farewell Tour concluding his musical journey.
In addition to this, the country legend has plans to release a book titled Like a River: Finding the Faith and Strength to Move Forward After Loss and Heartache, surrounding the tragic loss of his son, River, and how he coped with the overwhelming grief he faced.
While fans are devastated they will not be getting any more music from the talented singer-songwriter, everyone is proud of Smith for following his heart and pursuing his passions, despite how difficult this decision may have been.
Backstage at 2023 iHeartCountry Festival in Austin, Texas earlier this month, Celeb Secrets host Juliet Schroder chatted with Granger all about his transition away from country music, his plans for the future and more in an exclusiveinterview.
When asked how he landed on the difficult decision to leave the country music space, Smith shared with us, “I’m moving away from music because it feels like I’m needing to market myself and I’m needing approval and praise, and that is contradicting the book that I’m putting out that’s about surrendering and allowing the Lord to work through his providence and his sovereignty.”
“Taking up my cross and following him is not what I feel like I’m doing personally on a Saturday night, needing attention and praise from the fans, and I’m not saying that somebody else can’t do that, I’m just not good at it,” he continued.
While he may have made up his mind, this decision did not come easily to the country legend.
“It’s a such a part of me, and giving up that part of me that’s such a big deal to me is part of my surrender, and so it’s not like I don’t like country music or I won’t always listen to George Strait still, but I’ve learned so much here,” he revealed.
“I’ll still be traveling around to be on different stages, just for a different reason,” Smith teased with a smile.
Whether he is traveling the world performing smash hits like “Backroad Song,” “Happens Like That,” “If the Boot Fits” and more, or traveling the world preaching the gospel, we wish Granger Smith nothing but success in his future endeavors.
While his choice to step away from country music is heartbreaking for fans everywhere, the “Backroad Song” singer’s upcoming book is sure to show everyone a different side to the talented singer-songwriter.
When asked the story behind his upcoming book, Smith shared with us, “It starts with losing my son, River, and it’s my journey after that… A lot of people know that story, my fans do, but they don’t know the details of moving forward through that and what it took to move through that loss and what I had to surrender to, so that’s gonna be the message.”
“If you’re going through anything, if you’re suffering, if you’re grieving, if you have heartbreak or maybe even you just lost a job, I can’t empathize with your exact situation, but I could tell you that I was hurting and I could tell you that I tried everything to come out of it and nothing worked, and so let me show you what happened to me. That’s the story,” he continued passionately.
With the upcoming book aside, Smith has some personal goals he wants to accomplish once he leaves the country music space for good.
“I want to continue to be able to shed the need for praise for myself,” he revealed. “That’s a problem, you know, that I’ve dealt with for a long time because in the music business, I’ve needed to get the approval to know that I’m doing better, like that’s my way to measure if I’m doing better, and so to be able to stop measuring myself in that way, it’s going to be a challenge, but that’s the new goal.”
While fans everywhere hope to attend Smith’s elusive Like A River Farewell Tour this summer to see one final performance, be sure to check out our full interview with him from iHeartCountry Festival in the meantime.
After watching, let us know your thoughts on Granger Smith stepping away from the country music space by either leaving a reaction at the bottom of the post, or by sending us a tweet at @CS_Country. After that, be sure to connect with Smith on Instagram @grangersmith to stay tuned on all of his future endeavors — His future is looking bright!
With reporting credit by Juliet Schroder. For more coverage from the 2023 iHeartCountry Festival, click HERE.