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Conner Smith Releases “Meanwhile In Carolina” And Talks The Excitement Surrounding His Debut Album (Exclusive)

Celeb Secrets Country spoke with the rising country star about his forthcoming record at the 2023 BMI Country Awards in Nashville.

Photo Credit: Luke Hutcherson

Big Machine Label Group’s Conner Smith is gearing up for a big year.

Smith’s newest single “Meanwhile In Carolina” was written with Blake Pendergrass, and decipts Smith’s own fairytale ending with fiancé Leah Thompson. It’s another chapter told as apart of Smith’s highly-anticipated full-length debut record, Smoky Mountains, out January 26th via The Valory Music Co.

“We’ve been working a long time for that,” Smith tells Celeb Secrets Country reporter Juliet Schroder on the red carpet at the 2023 BMI Country Awards in Nashville, Tennessee about his debut. “I think I finally figured out what I wanted to say and I think this record does it well.”

“I think this record shows growth from the very beginning. This record is a story of like the middle of chasing a dream and then also the longing for home and then the tension between the two and then throughout that process, growing up and getting engaged and trying to figure out who I am so I think every song has a purpose to that story so I’m excited for the fans to get their hands on it.”

The song follows a string of singles released ahead his debut album including viral single “I Hate Alabama,” which gained massive attention in the college football fanbase, GOLD-certified “Take It Slow,” title track “Smoky Mountains” and current rising single, “Creek Will Rise.” The album also features a forthcoming duet with country songstress Hailey Whitters called “Roulette On The Heart,” and Smith noted that the song is “a labor of love.”

Smith spills, “There’s a duet with Hailey Whitters on this record that is maybe my favorite song on the album and this song was really a challenge to just it right. We spent so much time in the studio — poor Hailey sang it three or four times just to like really bring the emotions of the song — and I’m so thankful for her for doing that. She is one of my favorite new artists in the game and I’m so excited she’s on the record. That song was a labor of love and I cannot wait for this song to be a part of the live show and a part of the story that we’re telling.”

Smoky Mountains is now available to pre-order and you can catch the country star on one of the dates of his headlining CREEK WILL RISE TOUR.

Check out for the full list of tour dates and tickets. To keep up with Connor Smith follow @connersmithmusic on Instagram, @connorvsmith on X and @connersmith on TikTok, and don’t forget to watch our full interview with Conner below for more deets on the record.



1. “Smoky Mountains” | Written by Conner Smith, Zach Crowell

2. “Creek Will Rise” | Written by Conner Smith, Chris LaCorte, Chase McGill, Parker Welling 

3. “Roulette On The Heart (featuring Hailey Whitters)” | Written by Conner Smith, Jessi Alexander, Chase McGill, Mark Trussell

4. “Heatin’ Up” | Written by Conner Smith, Chase McGill, Daniel Ross

5. “Baby, I” | Written by Conner Smith, Devin Dawson, Mark Trussell, Parker Welling

6. “Meanwhile In Carolina” | Written by Conner Smith, Blake Pendergrass

7. “Boots In The Bleachers” | Written by Conner Smith, Ben Hayslip, Jordan Walker

8. “Take It Slow” | Written by Conner Smith, Ryan Hurd, Mark Trussell 

9. “Trouble” | Written by Conner Smith, Zach Crowell, Jerry Flowers, Chase McGill, Mark Trussell

10. “I Hate Alabama” | Written by Nick Columbia, Drew Green, Hunter Phelps, Lee Starr 

11. “Regret In The Morning” | Written by Conner Smith, Hunter Phelps, Daniel Ross

12. “God Moments” | Written by Conner Smith, Zach Crowell, Devin Dawson, Blake Pendergrass


For more coverage from the 2023 BMI Country Awards, click here


  • Brianna Vacca
  • Juliet Schroder

    Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends. Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.

Written by Brianna Vacca

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