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Music

Scotty McCreery

By Music No Comments

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, join our host Gary Scott Thomas and our special guest host Julie Stevens of KRTY.com for an exciting conversation featuring the one and only, Scotty McCreery, the country music sensation behind the songs “Damn Strait,” “Five More Minutes,” “Cab In A Solo,” and many more! It’s an episode about Scotty’s life on tour, the thrill of performing live, and the joys and challenges of parenthood. This one is filled with heart and laughter, so be sure you won’t miss it! Tune in now!

This episode is sponsored by:

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In this Episode:

  • Scotty shares adorable updates about being a father to his one-and-a-half-year-old son.
  • Scotty shares how he still gets nervous and excited before performing at big gigs despite a skyrocketing career.
  • Find out which of Scotty’s songs is the fan favorite and make the crowd go wild.
  • Discover Scotty’s unique approach to writing new music by retreating and getting insights into his songwriting process, which starts with jotting down ideas on his iPhone.
  • Hear all about Scotty’s star-struck experiences and lasting friendships within the industry.

Quotations:

“It’s a heartbreak, but he’s finding his way to it; he’s doing just fine.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“I still get excited more than anything. I love, my passion is, to write and sing country music and getting to do that anytime. I love it.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“To actually have people show up and sing a song back to you, it’s pretty awesome.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“Five More Minutes is the song where you see people bumping their neighbors and smiles and phones come up. And that’s the one I think they’re waiting on.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“It’s a heartbreak song, but I swear I’m smiling every night when I’m singing it.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“My goal was always to be a country singer, country musician.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“I had no clue what the heck I was doing, but little by little I started writing songs and, uh, started growing up and having life experience and figuring out who I was as a man first and then as an artist.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

“We had like a little retreat and we, most of the songs we wrote, were outside on the back porch around a fire and guitars writing just no phones out, no nothing. It was, it was, uh, it felt like the old days, like how songs should be written.”  ~ Scotty McCreery

Bio:

Scotty McCreery is an American country singer. He rose to fame after winning the tenth season of American Idol in May 2011. He captured hearts with his humble demeanor and undeniable talent. Since then, he has released several chart-topping albums, including “Clear as Day” and “See You Tonight,” earning accolades for his distinct blend of traditional and contemporary country sounds.

Scotty’s journey from small-town singer to country star has been marked by dedication and perseverance. Despite his meteoric rise to fame, he remains grounded in his roots, often drawing inspiration from his upbringing in North Carolina. His music reflects themes of love, faith, and the joys and struggles of everyday life, resonating with audiences across the globe.
In 2024, Scotty received one of country music’s crowning achievements when he became a member of the Grand Ole Opry. He was inducted on April 20 by his childhood hero Josh Turner.

Guest Contact Info:

Website: https://www.scottymccreery.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/scottymccreery

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/scottymccreery

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@smccreeryofficial

X: https://twitter.com/ScottyMcCreery

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@scottymccreery

Walker Hayes

By Faith, Music, Personal Growth No Comments

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, join us in this heartfelt and candid episode where we welcome back the multi-talented country artist and family man, Walker Hayes. Dive into an intimate conversation about life, parenting, and the journey through success and failure.

For anyone looking for inspiration and a refreshing perspective on what really counts in life, this episode has profound wisdom that will surely resonate with everyone! Tune in now!

This episode is sponsored by:

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(Be sure to tell them Gary sent you to receive a “Thank you” gift!)

In this Episode You’ll Discover:

  • How Walker balances making music, preparing for tours, and being an active father.
  • His approach to parenting that focuses on creating moments rather than material success.
  • The impact of losing his father in 2021 and how it has shaped his views on appreciating the small things in life.
  • The importance of teaching kids resilience through efforts like trick shots illustrates that success often comes after many attempts.
  • Why he believes the journey is more important than reaching a destination or achieving traditional markers of success.
  • An honest discussion about discipline, setting examples as parents, and having tough but necessary conversations with children for their long-term benefit.
  • A touching moment where Walker shares a personal story about encouraging his daughter to take action towards her dreams.
  • Insights into how families can improve by learning out loud from each other’s mistakes openly at home.

Quotations:

“I’m not the smartest guy in the world and I try to look at the lens through a kind of backward, view of like, you know, life’s pretty short.” ~ Walker Hayes

“One thing I want to do is set up my kids for success. And I don’t mean that as like to make money or to, to make dreams, you know, I just, I think if you have kind of a level of contentment and confidence as you walk through life and you are able to focus on moments and not the past or the future, it’s a very, it’s an asset, to society.” ~ Walker Hayes

“My point is I feel like just seconds on the clock with my kids might be one of the best things I can give them.” ~ Walker Hayes

“If you have kind of a level of contentment and confidence as you walk through life and you are able to focus on moments and not the past or the future, it’s an asset to society. It makes people around you. It makes their shoulders relax and go, Oh yeah, we’re just kind of in this life together.” ~ Walker Hayes

“So if you see me and you’re like, Oh, that dude’s a really great family guy. Trust me. It’s a daily battle. It’s a daily journey, it’s a daily reminder, like, Hey man, I want to, I need to help with these kids.” ~ Walker Hayes

“My music journey is funny. It’s like a 20-year trick shot.” ~ Walker Hayes

“When you’re doing those things in life, what it boils down to the most precious thing about it is who you’re doing it with.” ~ Walker Hayes

“Adults are no different than kids.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I don’t want to ever tell my kids what to do. I just want them to know  It’s up to them, man.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I hate when I start to feel like I sound like a teacher, but I guess I’m old enough to start sounding like a teacher.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I think we’re a better family when we are humble enough to learn out loud.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I really feel like a family is like a tiny little city that God gives us.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I don’t got it all figured out. I’m actually figuring it out as I go a little bit, you know, and, But I’m trying, like, anybody got some advice? You know, anybody got some help? And I think that’s just kind of a thing that community needs, starting in the home.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I thought by the time I was 35 I’d be a freaking genius. Like I would have it, I’d have it down, but all I do is figure out, there’s more that I’m not really understanding.” ~ Walker Hayes

“Things you will not regret are a positive attitude and a hundred percent effort. And really, that’s all you can control.” ~ Walker Hayes

“Every single life that you pass, whatever eight point something billion people every day. They have someone they lost, they have a heart that’s broken, they have scars like you wouldn’t believe, they have a future like you wouldn’t believe, and then some of them are going to be gone by next Wednesday, you know, it’s just insane to think how fast, how forgotten we will be, no matter how large your life is, you know, here on Earth. It is just a stop along the way of eternity. And I feel like the more we can grasp that, the more God can allow us to see the brevity of life.” ~ Walker Hayes

“When I pick up a guitar, it’s an escape, and it’s good because it feeds the kids and it takes care of the family, but it also, steals me away from things that are more important.” ~ Walker Hayes

“I love words, man I love lyrics, and I always have since I wrote my first song as a kid.” ~ Walker Hayes

“And so songwriting, it basically is just a beautiful file cabinet that I organize each day. And the songs for me are like, they’re what I wanted to say. They’re the feeling I want to hand people on a plate.” ~ Walker Hayes

Bio:

Walker Hayes is a popular American country music artist known for his unique blend of modern sounds and heartfelt storytelling. His hit song “Pants” propelled him to fame and showcased his infectious energy and memorable melodies. With his sincere lyrics and distinct vocal style in the country music industry, Hayes has become a rising star and has also been acknowledged and nominated for significant honors. In addition to his musical accomplishments, Hayes has had a profound social impact through his charitable work. He established the “Be A Craig Fund” in memory of Craig, a kind man who supported Hayes during a trying time in his life. The goal of the fund is to assist people and families in need, highlighting Hayes’ dedication to giving back to his community. His 2017 hit, “You Broke Up with Me,” which had tremendous popularity and chart success. Hayes reaped the benefits of his newfound notoriety by putting out hit singles like “90’s Country” and “Don’t Let Her.” He went viral again after his TikTok video dancing with his daughter to his song “Fancy Like” received millions of views.

Walker is well known for his musical prowess and poignant narrative, but he also has a full personal life that has influenced his artistic development. He is a loving father who finds motivation in his relationships and life experiences. He got married to his high school love, Laney Beville. The couple started dating when they first met while they were teenagers. Hayes’ personal and professional lives have been solidly supported by their enduring love and partnership. Together, they have six children, demonstrating their dedication to raising a strong family and providing a supportive atmosphere. He never ceases to motivate people with his openness, genuineness, and the devotion he shows to both his family and his profession.

Guest Contact Info:

Website: https://www.walkerhayes.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/walkerhayes

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/walkerhayes

X: https://twitter.com/walkerhayes

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@walkerhayesofficial

YouTube: @WalkerHayes

Keifer Thompson

By Comedian, Community, Music, Personal Growth, Politics One Comment

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, our host Gary Scott Thomas welcomes back Keifer Thompson from country music duo Thompson Square. Join us for another candid yet thought-provoking conversation as they dive into an array of topics, from tackling parenthood to dissecting political landscapes. Keifer doesn’t shy away from sharing his conservative perspective. They talk about societal issues too. Racism and division are hot topics as he advocates for teaching love over hate to kids.

Don’t miss this rollercoaster ride through politics, society, parenting, comedy, and of course, country music! Tune in now! 

This episode is sponsored by:

(Use code “Gary” to get $89 off any Mike Counsil Plumbing and Rooter service!)

In this Episode:

  • Keifer shares personal experiences dealing with his son’s dental issues, shedding light on the complexities of skepticism towards these industries.
  • Hear Keifer and Gary talk about how media bias shapes public perception with its misinformation and concerns over agenda-driven narratives.
  • Explore opinions and insights about political landscapes, current events, and societal issues.
  • Hear insights addressing racism, its evolution over generations, and the importance of instilling values of equality in children, emphasizing the need for ongoing dialogue and action.
  • Discover Keifer’s approach to songwriting and comedic performance.
  •  Hear Keifer and Gary share their personal losses/emotions publicly and how vulnerability contributes to connection with others.

Quotations:

“I feel like everyone’s got to speak their mind. I think, you know, everyone has the right to speak their mind.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“The worst part about what’s going on right now is nobody can admit when they’re wrong.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“When the truth comes out, everyone just kind of ignores it and doesn’t report on it.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I don’t watch the news. I don’t trust any of the news. We’re just trying to live our lives and do our thing. I just feel like God’s in control no matter what.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I reflect on a lot of things and I was driving in the day and just looking out across these fields and trees and everything else and I was like, you know what? You know, at the end of the day. I mean, this is still a beautiful world.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“There’s two kinds of people. There are good people and there are bad people. Doesn’t matter what color they are.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I love thought-provoking things. I wanna talk to intelligent people who have, and you know what, if I’m wrong, prove it to me. You know, if I have to think this way, tell me why. And convince me that I am wrong.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I see it all the time when people get proven wrong and instead of acknowledging that, they just clam up and just run off.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“You can’t tell certain jokes anymore without making everybody mad.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“Comedy needs to be untouched when it comes to social inequalities. Because the thing of it is, man, is we are all different. White people do things that white people do, black people do black things, Mexican people, they do Mexican, we’re up and they’re like, oh, that’s a stereotype, you’re stereotyping. Yes, because we’re all a stereotype. That’s what makes us special. You guys want us to make us all the same.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“That’s the thing about comedy, if it’s true, and everybody knows it’s true, then it’s funny.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I have faith in the future, I do, because I think these younger kids are smelling the BS. They’re starting to get a sense of what they missed.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“It seems like comedy is always the one thing that will bring a crowd in if you’re having a hard time with them.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“Whether it’s your true persona or not, you have to become the person that you wanna be.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“We’re country artists or whatever, but we’re still people with feelings and problems and all that stuff and loss and hurt and all that thing.” ~ Keifer Thompson

Bio:

Keifer Thompson is one half of the award-winning country music duo Thompson Square, renowned for their soulful harmonies and heartfelt songwriting. Born on January 24, 1973, in Miami, Oklahoma, Keifer discovered his passion for music at an early age. He honed his skills as a singer-songwriter and guitarist, drawing inspiration from a diverse range of musical influences. In 1996, Keifer met his future wife and musical partner, Shawna, at a singing competition in Nashville, Tennessee. Their instant connection led to the formation of Thompson Square, and together they embarked on a remarkable journey in the country music scene.

Thompson Square’s self-titled debut album, released in 2011, catapulted them to stardom with hit singles like “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not,” which topped the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Keifer’s emotive vocals and Shawna’s dynamic harmonies resonated with audiences, earning them widespread acclaim and numerous awards, including Vocal Duo of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards and the Country Music Association Awards.

Throughout their careers, Keifer has showcased his exceptional songwriting talent, penning heartfelt lyrics that resonate with listeners on a deeply personal level. With a string of chart-topping hits and a reputation for electrifying live performances, Thompson Square continues to captivate audiences around the world, cementing Keifer’s status as one of country music’s most beloved artists.

Guest Contact Info:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/keifercomedy/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeiferThompsonComedian/

X: https://twitter.com/keifercomedy

Website: https://thompsonsquare.com/

Thompson Square Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thompsonsquare/

Thompson Square Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thompsonsquare

Heath Wright

By Music No Comments

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, we sit down with the lead vocals, lead guitar, and fiddle of the renowned ’90s country band, Ricochet. Tall, good-looking, and incredibly talented Heath Wright shares his epic journey from delivering donuts to insurance agencies with our very own host, Gary Scott Thomas, to becoming a cattle rancher in Oklahoma. He reminisces about the bizarre things bands did back in their early days and gives us an inside look into life on a ranch, new music releases, and his reflections on being part of a band. Join us in this amazing episode filled with laughter and more! Tune in now!

This episode is sponsored by:

(Be sure to tell them Gary sent you!)

In this Episode:

  • The early days: Reminiscing about when Ricochet delivered donuts to an insurance agency, showcasing the unique promotional stunts bands undertook while climbing their way to fame.
  • A day in the life of a rancher: Heath candidly shares his current routine of tending to sick animals on his cattle ranch, highlighting how far removed it is from the typical musician’s lifestyle.
  • Nostalgia hits hard: They reflect on ’90s country music trends and discuss why some bands endure while others fade away.
  • The evolution of performance: Heath talks about singing their hit song “Daddy’s Money” 30 years later and jokes about wishing he’d recorded it in a lower key due to changing vocal ranges over time.
  • Behind-the-scenes look at recording: Insights into re-recording classic hits for today’s audience using modern technology are shared, preserving originality while enhancing sound quality.
  • Album release excitement: There’s a buzz around Ricochet’s new album, featuring both rerecorded classics and fresh tracks that blend past glory with present vibrancy.
  • Thought-provoking discussions reveal what goes into maintaining longevity in music, including making tough business decisions similar to those made by other successful groups like Sawyer Brown and KISS.

I’ll Still Be Loving You by Restless Heart (Live Performance with Heath Wright)

Quotations:

“I got to thinking to myself, well, If I’m lucky, I might get 10 years out of this, out of this career. But here I am 30 years later, still, still singing Daddy’s Money in the original key.” ~ Heath Wright

“If I had it to do over again, I don’t know that I would be in a band, or if I were, I would probably do it more like Mark Miller did it.” ~ Heath Wright

“I’m one of those guys who loves country music. I’ve been a country music fan long before I was a country music artist.” ~ Heath Wright

“When I go see a band, and I still do, I still go to concerts, I still love to listen to music and go out and listen to live performances and stuff, and, uh, when I do that, I like to sing along with the songs.” ~ Heath Wright

 “I loved it. It is refreshing that you’re so knowledgeable and that you’ve actually done your homework on Ricochet.” ~ Heath Wright

“I refer to myself as the spare tire of Restless Hearts. So they called me the sixth member. I’m basically the spare tire.” ~ Heath Wright

“My band is made up of professionals. I’ve handpicked the very best musicians out of Eastern Oklahoma and Western Arkansas.” ~ Heath Wright

“I need people to understand that, you know, even though these aren’t the original guys anymore, these are the best guys in the business.” ~ Heath Wright

Bio:

Heath Wright is the lead vocal, lead guitar, and fiddle of the country music band Ricochet. He is a proud native of Vian, Oklahoma, and has always stayed true to his roots, even during his 15-year stint in Nashville, TN. Heath’s journey began on the Rockin’ W Ranch, where he serenaded a captive audience of Hereford cows and honed his musical talents. Despite early shyness, Heath’s passion for music blossomed, leading him to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management at Northeastern State University before delving into a unique Country Music degree program at South Plains College.

Upon graduation, Heath embarked on the most significant journey of his life – the move to Nashville. There, he co-founded Ricochet, a band that skyrocketed to success with chart-topping hits and prestigious awards, including the New Vocal Group of the Year from the Academy of Country Music and several other CMA and ACM nominations. Top 10 hits (and even a multi-week #1) on the Billboard charts were no stranger to Heath and his band, Ricochet. During their highest point, Heath and Ricochet made numerous television appearances on Country Music Awards shows (as performers, presenters, and nominees), the Grand Ole Opry, and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. In 2011, Heath received a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to sing lead vocals for Restless Heart, a band he admired since childhood. Despite his bustling career, Heath’s proudest achievement remains his son, Dustin Heath, and the cherished moments they share on the family ranch.

Today, while Heath continues to perform with Ricochet and Restless Heart, he also fronts his band, “Heath Wright & the Hangmen,” showcasing classic-style country music across Eastern Oklahoma and Western Arkansas.

Guest Contact Info:

Website: https://ricochetonline.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RicochetFanPage/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/officialricochetband/