Superstar and Stadium Headliner Luke Bryan is at the top of his game and yet, his latest album, Crash My Party, proves he has no limits.
Crash My Party is the follow-up to Luke’s most successful album to date, tailgates & tanlines, both have been certified Double Platinum. The latter album featured three back-to-back Platinum and Double Platinum singles and has sold over 10 million tracks while Crash My Party currently feature four consecutive No. 1 singles and sold nearly 7 million tracks.
Crash My Party debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and Country sales chart, selling 527,783 copies, making it the largest sales debut at the time for a Country male artist since 2004. Additionally, Luke is one of only two country artists – the other being Taylor Swift – that have sold more than a half-million copies of an album in a single week since 2008. This is Bryan’s second consecutive Top 200 #1 album and since its release has now sold over two million copies.
Crash My Party also releases on the heels of Luke’s most successful Spring Break series album, Spring Break…Here To Party, which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top 200 chart and is certified Gold.
Luke’s superstar status was further cemented by the 2013 Academy of Country Music Award win for the highly coveted fan-voted Entertainer of the Year, in addition to his win for Vocal Event (“Only Way I Know” with Eric Church and Jason Aldean), along with his first-time ACM hosting duty with Blake Shelton. That same year, he also won a Billboard Music Award as Top Country Artist and was honored as the Favorite Male Artist- Country at the American Music Awards. In December of 2013, Luke was named Artist of The Year at the American Country Awards, the night’s highest award, as well as Artist of the Year, Male and Touring Artist of the Year bringing his total career wins at the ACA’s to 12!
In 2014, Luke co-hosted the ACM Awards for a second time and won two additional Billboard Music Awards, including Top Country album for Crash My Party as well as two CMT Music Awards. And the amazing news is that the Leesburg, Ga., native has only scratched the surface of what he can achieve.
Bryan’s latest album, by far his best yet, builds on the success of his previous releases and proves that his rich musical mine has only begun to be tapped.
First single and title cut “Crash My Party,” a multi-week No. 1, Double Platinum single, is full of playful longing. “It’s a great hook and a great way to say, ‘come love on me,’” says Luke. The album also contains three additional No. 1 singles, “That’s My Kind of Night,” “Drink A Beer,” and “Play It Again” bringing his career No. 1 total to ten. Luke’s current single “Roller Coaster” is the fifth release from Crash My Party.
“I decided Crash My Party was perfect title for this album because, like the song, the album goes beyond the literal meaning of the title,” Luke explains. “The song isn’t what you think it is, it is unexpected, and in the same way fans will definitely hear some surprises on my new album. It still reflects my sound but you will get to hear a little bit deeper, different side to me musically as well.”
A different side indeed. Luke’s career album—once again produced by Jeff Stevens—includes, “Goodbye Girl,” which taps into a new vein for Bryan. “Usually I’m singing kind of loud and forceful and on ‘Goodbye Girl’ I’m using my tender, Conway Twitty-like, soft voice,” Luke says. “It’s one my favorite things I’ve ever recorded.”
Back road party song “Beer In The Headlights” may tread on familiar territory but the song finds Luke stretching vocally. “This album has some songs that showcase a big voice and long notes and we’ve never done that before,” Luke says, referencing “Beer In The Headlights,” the inspiring “Blood Brothers” and the head-over-heels love song “Roller Coaster.”
Luke calls the sticks-in-your-head “Play It Again” “one of the biggest hits on the album. How many times have you or your girlfriend had a favorite song and when it comes on it fires you up?” Luke says.
“Dirt Road Diary,” which Luke co-wrote with fellow Georgians Dallas Davidson, Rhett Akins and Ben Hayslip, is the story of his life, he says. “It wrote itself. Dirt roads were an important part of my childhood.”
“’Dirt Road Diary’ is a song that I can envision country boys driving around on a dirt road listening to,” Luke adds.
Luke’s first headline tour in 2013, the “Dirt Road Diaries Tour,” played for 1.3 million fans with all dates selling out! His new tour, “That’s My Kind of Night Tour,” launched in January 2014 and sold-out all dates on the tour’s first leg, including two sold-out Madison Square Garden shows. As the tour continues this summer Luke will play his first stadium dates in Pittsburgh, Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago.
His annual Farm Tour, which is held in every fall and is a way to give back to local farming communities, continues to connect the son of a peanut farmer with his rural roots. It’s not surprising then that rural themes are a staple for Luke’s music. “’Shut It Down’ is a song that touches on rural areas and farming and I feel like I always have to have those songs,” Luke says emphatically.
As with his new album, Luke is determined to give the fans on his headlining tour the most for their hard-earned money. “My main thing is to keep upping the ante and upping the sound and staying creative,” Luke says adamantly. “I don’t want to give the fans the same thing year in and year out. I want to give them something they’ll come back to for years and years to come.”
“I aspire to do it for many years at a high level and keep growing it,” he emphasizes. “It’s amazing looking out there and knowing that the people in the audience are your crowd. They came to see you. It’s what I dreamed of when I moved to town.”
Luke had a number of dreams when he moved to Nashville but even he has to be surprised by his success, including multi-Platinum albums sales, back-to-back No. 1 singles and his first No. 1 album debut. His Spring Break shows in Panama City Beach, Fla., in March of 2014 brought in 230,000 fans during the two-day concert event.
For all he has achieved—and it’s plenty—Luke remains steadfast in what’s important to him: family. “I can’t be more happy in life than when I’ve got my family with me and I get to go out and do shows for a living,” says Luke. “The only negative about this is business is being away from your family, so when they’re out on the road with me, the negatives are removed and it’s nothing but positives.”
Luke calls his 2013 ACM Entertainer of the Year award “validation. It’s checking the biggest goal for your career off the list. It reminds me just how wonderful my fans are. It’s every emotion possible.”
As important as the award is, Luke says his life is filled with pinch-me moments. “Every night that I’m selling places out is a pinch me moment,” he says humbly. “When a fan comes up to me in the Boston airport because she recognized me is a pinch me moment. I tend to have a lot of pinch me moments. There’s a lot of amazing stuff coming my way and I try to remember it and appreciate it.”
With the imminent success of Crash My Party, it’s certain Luke will have plenty more pinch me moments to remember and appreciate.
Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776, declaring independence from Great Britain. The holiday is commonly associated with fireworks displays, parades, barbecues and concerts. Some of your favorite country stars take time to remember their Fourth of July traditions, memories and what the holiday really means to them.
AJ (fave 4th of July memory) OC: …very cool. :58
Well, this one is hard to beat. A couple of years ago, maybe longer than that now, I had an old boat in Florida. It’s like an old antique motor yacht, and it was kind of a cool old boat. I had taken that boat, I’ve always wanted to take it up north like to New York and up in that area, up in the northeast where it’s so pretty. So, we took the boat up there and Denise and the girls, we all went up. They like going to New York City, which I don’t really care about going to the city. So, I got to stay in my boat there at the harbor tied up, which was cool anyway. So they spent time in the city a few days and then that was Fourth of July, and we went out in the Hudson River that night and they shot the fireworks off and we were anchored out in front of the Statue of Liberty and New York City was behind us, and the Statue of Liberty and the fireworks were going off sitting on that boat. That was the coolest thing and my girls still talk about that. I mean, that was the coolest thing on Fourth of July I can ever remember. I can’t top that one probably. It was emotional sitting there watching the Statue of Liberty and thinking about all that. It was very cool.”
Billy Currington (4th of July) OC: …of my life. :16
“My best memories would be hanging out with my mom, brother and sister on the beach on Tybee Island right off the coast of Savannah, Georgia. We’d go there every year, and we’d light our own fireworks and watch the ones that they had for us. They were the best times, some of the best times of my life.”
Canaan Smith (Fireworks July Fourth) OC: …kinds of stuff. :39
“Williamsburg, Virginia has a great fireworks display. It’s one of the best in the nation, they say or something like that. We’d go to the Governor’s Palace. They have a big lawn, and we’d sit out there and lay a blanket down. This was before I was old enough to drink, but we probably tried to sneak some in anyhow. And we’d just watch the [show], you know they’d have the grand finale, which always blew my mind ‘cause just when you thought it was over, they’d start bringing out all of the tricks and it just gets crazy. We did that on a regular basis. Other times, we’d do stuff in our own yard. We had a big yard when we were growing up with a dirt track in the back, and our neighbor’s yard was equally as big, so when you put ‘em together, we had a massive area to be destructive and do whatever we wanted. So, we blew up all kinds of stuff.”
Darius Rucker (4th of July) 1 OC: …in the world. :24
“The Fourth of July to me is a day to celebrate freedom. We get to travel all over the world and see a lot of stuff, and I’ve been to a lot of countries that aren’t like ours and that’s when you really appreciate the fact that you can do whatever you want. As long as you’re willing to deal with the consequences, you can do whatever you want, you know? [I] appreciate those soldiers who died for us to be sitting here doing this, and we live in the greatest country in the world.”
Darius Rucker (fireworks) OC: …off once. :15
“Oh, I love fireworks. We had the bottle rocket fights and all that good stuff. I was the typical little crazy kid, you know. In South Carolina, it was always legal, so we shot fireworks when it was legal. We did all that sort of stuff. I almost blew my hand off once.”
Dierks Bentley (4th of July-patriotic) OC: …all the time. :17
“I’m extremely patriotic. I love this country, and I love the history of this country. I read books on this country. I spend my time on the road traveling physically throughout the country. The soldiers and their families are constantly on my mind. We work closely with the Wounded Warriors Project. We think about this stuff all the time.”
Easton Corbin (Fourth of July) OC: …clown around. :28
“Fourth of July, I remember growing up and having cookouts, and course we did the whole fireworks thing. I remember my uncle, he’d always get fireworks and bring down like from Alabama, because in Florida, you couldn’t get the bottle rockets and stuff, so he’d always go up to Alabama, ‘cause they live in Tallahassee, which was close to the [state] line. So, he would go over the line and get the good fireworks and bring ‘em down to my Grandma’s for me and my cousin, and we’d just hang out all day and shoot off fireworks and clown around.”
Eric Church (4th of July) OC: …freedoms. 1:17
“The Fourth of July for me, growing up we would always go to the lake, we didn’t live on the lake but we would all go to the lake. Had a buddy who had a pontoon and we would always get on the pontoon and you go out and you’d tie all the pontoons together and just have a big time. This was before, I was younger then, the adults were having more fun than we were, you know it was just to go swim in the water and shoot off fireworks. Basically, water tailgating is what it was. And then as we got older, same thing…we would just, us younger kids had our own boat and we had as much fun as the adults.”
Jordan Davis (Fourth of July) 1 OC: …an American. :18
“I think Fourth of July weekend is a special time to really sit back and be thankful for what we have – thankful to our military, thankful for family and for friends, just a time to really sit back and appreciate how great it is to be an American.”
Jordan Davis (Fourth of July) 2 OC: …really cool. :17
“Probably baseball games, firework shows at baseball games. We’d go to Shreveport Captains games, so yeah, we’d do that or barbecues and fireworks. I can remember being on the lake for a couple of Fourth of Julys. We’d take the boat out and we’d watch the downtown fireworks show from the boat, which was really cool.”
Josh Turner (fireworks) OC: …of money. [laughs] :20
“Yeah, we had fireworks around, especially my Daddy’s family. All the individual families had a lot of competition with each other and tried to outdo each other to try to see who had the biggest and baddest fireworks and all that. [laughs] My daddy, I think, was the smartest one. He just went out and bought maybe $25 worth of fireworks and let everybody else put on the big show, so he saved a lot of money.” [laughs]
Keith Urban (coming to America 1st time) OC: …as I could. :39
“1989 was the first year I came to the States, and it had always been my goal, but I had no plan on how to get here. It was just a case of keep playing, keep getting better at what you do, and then hopefully, somehow, some way I’ll end up over here. The guy who was managing me at the time, we just planned a trip over here – it was actually for the New Music Seminar in New York. And we came over for that, and then we did a trip down to Nashville, and I was shopping my little demo around. I think I humored everybody more than anything else [laughs] with my tragic, ill-fitting demo for the time. So, I left there, but I was just so committed to coming back as quick as I could.”
Kip Moore (Fourth of July-soldiers) OC: …every day. :32
“I’m a very, very patriotic person, proud of the country that I live in, and I’m very proud of what those guys do for us each and every day, and I don’t take it for granted one bit. My grandparents were in the military, fought wars, and I’ve seen the battle that they go through, just the horror of remember things. When I start to think that I’m half-way tough, I realize how I’m not one bit when I talk to soldiers when I’m out and realize the things that they go through. I can’t imagine facing what those guys face every day.”
Lady A (4th of July-Hillary) OC: …on my hand. :29
“For many, many years in a row, we would be up at the lake for Fourth of July, and having those memories of being on the boat and going tubing and skiing and enjoying being out in the summertime, great weather on the water. But, then for me, Fourth of July was when [husband] Chris [Tyrell] proposed. So, I got proposed to on July 2nd up at the lake, the same lake I grew up going to, and so that’s probably the biggest highlight of Fourth of July to me – getting a rock on my hand.”
Lady A (Fourth of July-Dave) OC: …and America. :45
“July fourth is always, for me, my birthday week. My birthday is July 5th so we grew up going on family trips to the beach. We would d always go to Hilton Head, South Carolina and always take trips for my birthday, so that’s always a fun time of the year…watch fireworks. I think my best memory would be my birthday party when I was 9 or 10 years old. We went to the batting cages and I remember I was swinging so hard, it was 100 degrees outside, I was swinging in the batting cage and ended up passing out right there in the batting cage. You’re trying so hard to hit the ball, you’re a kid and you really don’t realize how much water you should be drinking and [CHARLES: “Dave was that kid.”] I was that kid who was on the ground in the batting cage, people fanning and pouring water all over my face. Happy Birthday to me and America.”
LBT (military) OC: (Karen) …whenever we can. (Kimberly: “Yeah.”) :22
“It’s such a huge sacrifice what these men and women do for us, and not only the ones that are serving, but the families that are left here at home. I mean, it’s just a huge commitment that they make, and what an honor. We love to be able to sing for them and entertain them and to say thank you whenever we can.” (Kimberly: “Yeah.”)
Luke Bryan (4th of July memories) OC: …we used to. :21
“Some of my favorite Fourth of July memories were spent on Lake Blackshear down in Georgia with my family. I was always kind of in charge of driving home from Tennessee and picking up all the fireworks and my nieces and nephews always got excited when I rolled in because they knew I had all the fireworks. But, it was always a great memory, and I miss not getting to do that as much as we used to.”
Sam Hunt (Fourth of July) OC: …good time. :39
“My granddad on the other side of my family, he would always take a lot of pride…fireworks were actually, I’m from Georgia, and most of them were illegal, I’m pretty sure, growing up. But over in Alabama, that’s where all the firework stands were, and we only had to drive 10, 15 minutes to get to the Alabama line, so we could go get a bundle of fireworks pretty easy. But he would always take a lot of pride in going and finding all the good stuff, and coming back with a big pile. He’d have his torch out there at the end of the driveway and we’d all eat homemade ice cream and put down towels on the driveway and he’d shoot off fireworks for 30-45 minutes. Such a good time.”
“Hey! This is Alan Jackson, wishing you a happy and safe Fourth of July.”
“Hey guys! I’m Billy Currington, wishing you a Happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey y’all! I’m John, and I’m TJ, and we are Brothers Osborne, wish you a very Happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! What’s up guys? I’m Canaan Smith, wishing you a safe and happy Fourth of July!”
“Hey! This is Clare Dunn, wishing you a very Happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey y’all, what’s up? This is Darius Rucker, wishing you a very, very happy Fourth of July!”
“Happy Birthday, America!”
Hey everybody! This is Dierks Bentley, wishing you a Happy and safe Fourth of July.
“Hey! This is Easton Corbin. Have a safe and happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey this is Eric Church, wishing you a very happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! This is Eric Paslay, wishing you a very happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! This is Gary Allan. Happy Fourth of July.”
“Hi, it’s Jon Pardi, wishing you a happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! I’m Jordan Davis, wishing you a happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey everybody, Keith Urban here, wanting to wish you all a fantastic and safe summer. Enjoy the sunshine. Hopefully, you’ll get to spend some time with the ones you love, and hopefully, we’ll also get to see you out on the road.”
“Hi! This is Charles, Hillary and Dave of Lady Antebellum, wishing you a happy and safe Fourth of July weekend.”
“Hey! It’s Lauren Alaina. Have a safe and happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! We’re Little Big Town. Happy Fourth of July!”
“Hey! This is Luke Bryan, wishing you a very happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey! This is Mickey Guyton, wishing you a Happy Fourth of July.”
“Hey everybody! This is Sam Hunt, wishing you a safe and happy Fourth of July.”
“Hi! It’s Toby Keith, wishing you a safe Fourth of July.”
Check out the latest installment of LBTV. Luke Bryan and his buddy R&B superstar Jason Derulo take fans behind-the-scenes of this year’s CMT Music Awards and their collaboration on the show.