Parker McCollum: Wedding Soon

This week’s co-host is Parker McCollum, who co-hosts for the first time.  Parker will hit the road starting in June with Thomas Rhett.  He’ll also play a stadium show with Eric Church.  But before all that, he will get married to his fiancé Hallie Ray: “We’re getting married in about five weeks. So it’s coming up quick!”

Parker’s current hit “To Be Loved By You” was actually inspired by his fiancé: “I had been arguing with my then-girlfriend, Hallie Ray, and said to one of my friends, ‘What does a guy have to do to be loved by that girl.’ My friend said, ‘I don’t know but you should write that down.’ So immediately I picked up my guitar and started singing a melody, and wrote that first verse and part of the chorus. We finished it super-quick.”

Parker’s tour with Thomas Rhett begins in June, but the two have already been in touch: “I talked to him on the phone for about an hour the other day.  We talked about life, marriage, kids, Country music, and songwriting.  As long as he’s been doing this, and much success as he’s had, he still loves what he’s doing.”

Parker just got the word that he will open a stadium show for Eric Church in Milwaukee over Memorial Day weekend: “I’ve not met Eric, I’m not sure he knows who I am. But I’ve been a fan of his for a long time. I got a text message from my manager that said ‘Do you want to play a stadium with Eric Church?’  I said ‘You don’t have to ask those things. Just tell me we’re doing it.'”

A few days after speaking with Lon, Parker received the news that he had won the ACM New Male Artist of the Year. But before getting that news, Parker said he was happy with the nomination: “Just to be nominated is such a crazy thing to be sitting on your show to be talking about. I’ve seen so many of those shows and seen so many guys you look up to walk on that stage. It’s a pinch-me moment, and then you’re nominated with such talented songwriters. It’s nice to be recognized with people like that.”

In the video for “To Be Loved By You,” Parker drives a vintage Mustang.  Lon wanted to know more about that car: “I called my buddy Holden, who I knew had this 65 Mustang, and asked if I could borrow it for the video. We had to tow it back to his house after making the video. We did donuts so hard, we broke the car.  Shout out to Holden for letting me break your car.”

Parker described the circumstances behind shooting the video: “We shot the entire thing in one day, and it was 35 degrees the entire day, and I was in short sleeves for the whole shoot. I told the director that the song felt fast from the first note, and I wanted the video to show that. These are things I love to do, which is sing real loud, and drive real fast.”

Parker also has great stories this week about Dierks Bentley, Tim McGraw, Miranda Lambert, Jason Aldean, Cody Johnson, and Florida Georgia Line.

NEXT WEEK: Russell Dickerson

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