Episode #276 : A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax
GETTING TO KNOW CHAD FREEMAN
by Jacqueline Jax host of A.V.A Live Radio
I feel like the music business, or more specifically the country music business is in a very interesting place. You’ve had this so-called “Bro Country” being popular for a while now and then someone a lot more traditional like Chris Stapleton shows up and wins a bunch of awards out of nowhere. There’s definitely some pushing and pulling over where country goes in the future. I think the genre is broad enough right now that there’s room for both. That’s the great thing about music is that you don’t have to like it all, there’s something for everyone and I think country being as huge as it is right now gives each artist room to express what they want and its up to the listener to decide if it is their thing or not.
One of the hardest things as an artist is getting your name out there. There were a couple of artists that I looked up to when I moved into the area and I worked hard to get my band up to where they were. It was an accomplishment in my eyes when they started contacting me and the respect that they had for what we had accomplished. Some bands think they can just show up and get paid… it’s not good for the overall music community when bands start fighting over pay and driving down prices. One of the lessons that I learned that I think really helped was to be able to say no. We all love to play, but you have to put a value on your product and if you don’t, it’s really hard to grow and get respect in your community.
is a great conduit to build your fan base and communicate with them. I am not a tech guy so getting used to Facebook was one thing… Now with Twitter, Instagram and all these others it’s difficult to spread yourself over all of them. I try and keep up but with travel and performing it’s tough to be extremely active on all of those sites. But, that’s part of the evolution. You have to be visible.
Singles vs an album…
I felt like initially I wanted to release an album. There’s just something to be said about having an entire body of work that is yours. Once you have some material I don’t have a problem releasing singles. I think our next project will be an Ep of 3-5 songs that we are really proud of and fit our sound. I am not a fan of someone releasing one song that goes big and they are thrown on a tour and spend 75% of their set playing covers because they don’t have any other material. I can hear those songs anytime. I like to hear something different.
I would love to have 5 minutes alone with…
He’s not music related, but Steve Largent, Hall of Fame receiver for the Seahawks. He was my idol growing up and I was really inspired by his work ethic and dedication to his craft. He wasn’t ever the biggest or fastest guy but he was amazing to watch and really someone who helped give me the drive that I have today.
Being Current and trendy…
I think there are always expectations about how to be. It’s always a mix at every show getting people who want “real” country music like Merle, Waylon and the like and then others that want nothing twangy and want to hear all Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean, Eric Church. I like a little of both so that’s what we play. I don’t see a need to put yourself in a corner. Sometimes I feel like a ballcap, a lot of the time it’s a cowboy hat. Either can work.
I am most afraid of…
Failing would be too easy of an answer because I have already achieved so much more than I imagined. I think my biggest fear would be to let this industry change who I am as a person. That was the biggest compliment I got from several old friends when I finally got to perform in Oregon and they came out. When we were talking offstage, they all said that I was still the same guy they knew years ago even though on stage it’s a totally different persona. That made me feel really good about myself.
My personal definition of success is..
Kind of what I just spoke about but being able to perform in front of my 93 year old grandmother that same week in Oregon was pretty amazing. That had been a goal for years and for it to finally happen and go well it was definitely a big check off of my bucket list.
My over all goal for my life & career is…
Just to be happy. I don’t do this to get rich or famous. I do it because I love it. If someday I stop loving it I will have to reconsider. Music will always be a part of my life but being happy with my life and who I am and having a family that supports and believes in me and is proud of what I have done is the most important thing. I hope to someday settle down, just haven’t had that happen quite yet. As it is I still call my mom before every show. Have ever since I started fronting bands years ago.
3 Ways that I challenge myself and how each one moves me forward towards my goal.
1) Running the band myself. We don’t have a manager or booking agent so I wear multiple hats in CFR
2) Always reaching for more opportunities. So many venues are almost impossible to get in touch with but I keep on it until we can get our foot in the door. Hard to do that without getting frustrated or giving up sometimes.
3) Keeping focus on what’s really important. I have the coolest job in the world, but it is a job and it requires effort and dedication but time needs to be made for family and friends. It’s hard for me to slow down and force myself to relax from time to time.
I was always afraid of singing in public…
so when I graduated college I decided to face my fears and entered a singing contest. I didn’t do great but opened the musical floodgates and it has been a helluva ride since then.
I grew up in Oregon hunting, fishing, 4-wheeling and after living in New York City for a while and then Phoenix, Arizona I started thinking of the things that I loved and missed about back home. They all kind of came out in this song. My bandmates and I kind of went through it when it was written and it just kind of had an edge to it so we went into the studio with that in mind. Recording was kind of funny because I was tied up and couldn’t make it to the session so my guitar player at the time cut the tracks without me being able to hear them. They came out great and we went with it.
Livin Country and the rest of the album can be purchased at www.chadfreemanredline.com/merchandise
One of my bucket list items was…
to release an album that I wrote or co-wrote every song and I was able to do that with this debut effort. I had a lot of great musicians volunteer their time to help be a part of it and make it happen. I think one of the things that I really like the most about it is the diversity. I have heard from people who like new country and others who like old that like the album. The fun part has been finding out which song is everyone’s favorite and as of yet there really hasn’t been a clear-cut winner.
My goal is to play music that I enjoy and hopefully someday support a family doing what I love.
Phoenix, Arizona …
currently. The scene is very diverse. Clubs keep opening and closing and everyone wants their piece of the pie. It’s tough to make enough to make a living, but we have been very fortunate to have great musicians and really build our reputation and following over the years. We actually rarely perform around home anymore except for private parties and festivals.
I actually love getting to the ocean. My degree in college was in Marine Biology and water just has a soothing effect on me. That’s always kind of a big joke about how a marine biologist ended up in the middle of the desert singing country songs!
We don’t have a music video of the song. This link is up performing at Super Bowl XLIX last year