Anyone else excited for summer? Holy shit... I am counting down the days! There’s 6 weeks of classes left, I need an ice beer, some sun on my face and some goddamn Country Music blasting over the speakers. Any of you know what I'll be listening to? Well it's going to be a whole lot of Hunter " I only release heat" Thomas Mounce, because this guy knows how to lay down some good ole Country Music!
Get To Know Hunter
"I'm from Pleasant Hill, Missouri which is just south of Kansas City. I grew up in a town of about 6,000 people, so very small, and I knew everybody. I never played music growing up or played an instrument or sang in choir or anything like that. In 8th grade, they made us take choir and that was the only experience I had growing up. During high school I did cross-country, basketball and soccer. I wasn't big enough to do football. So I was very involved with sports and like I said, didn't focus on music at all. Just before graduation we had a career day and students went into the office and the school counselor would ask us what we planned on doing for college. I was sitting at this table and one of my good friends was sitting next to me. I asked him "Nick, what are you doing for college? Because I have no idea what I'm doing". He responded with "I'm going to the Fire Academy". I didn't know what he meant and he told me it was one semester, Monday-Friday 8-5. You come out with all your Fire certifications, EMT license and can immediately go into the career field making good money - what most people will be making after going to school for 4 years. I was really intrigued by that and ended up going to the Fire Academy. Absolutely loved it. Around the same time I started messing around with the guitar, learning chords and really enjoyed it. I moved a few hours away to go to community college in Springfield, Missouri and dove into learning how to play. I wrote my first song "Can't Get Enough", which oddly enough is one of my most requested songs when I'm out playing shows live. I ended up getting a firefighting job in Missouri and did that for about a year. During the summer of 2016 I got a call from the Hendersonville Fire Department, which is north of Nashville, and they offered me a job. I had less than a day to decide if I wanted to up and move my whole life. I decided to do it and moved to Nashville in the summer of 2016."
Texas Vibe = Absolute Smash
Any song that has alcohol, dive bars and a Texas Country vibe… you can sign me up. Hunter has a voice that is made for Country Music. On top of that it is powerful. Within seconds that voice draws you in and makes you stop what you're doing. I think you can tell by the title that "Alone in the Lone Star” isn't about a guy who just won a million dollars. Instead it is about working through a break up, trying to get the hell out of town "where nobody knows me" and drowning in his sorrows. As Hunter told me, he wanted to take a piece of Texas and bring it to Nashville. With the production of this song, I really believe he nailed it. I truly believe the best and most underrated thing about Hunter Thomas Mounce is that his music is authentic. He doesn't try to get too flashy and after hearing each one of his songs, you know he put his heart and soul into it. A man that is on a mission and is at the beginning of his career.
Inspiration Behind "Alone in the Lone Star"
Written By: Hunter Thomas Mounce & Joe Costa
Produced By: Kenny Royster (Direct Image Recording Studio)
"Right now I'm in a place where most of the Country Music I'm listening to is Texas Country. I like new Country Music too. For me, I feel like Texas Country is so authentic most of the time compared to stuff you hear on the radio. From a creative standpoint, I wanted to channel that. My friend Joe Costa, he and his wife are a duo Joe & Martina. Joe and I were on our third writing session and I didn't have any ideas that day. I asked him if he had any ideas. He didn't either, but had one line. He laid it on me and I thought it was cool and we went with it. Joe had just gotten off the phone with a guy from Texas who was drinking Ranch Water - which is vodka with Topo Chico - and he jotted that down. Come to find out, usually Ranch Water is Tequila and Topo Chico. So I don't know, but really liked how it sounded. Honestly, we just wrote the song in order. We wrote the first line and then the first verse, we didn't jump around. From what I can remember, we wrote it quite effortlessly. I think the toughest thing was the hook. It just popped in my head and I was like "what about alone in the lone star state". We plugged it in and liked the way it sounded. That's how we ended up with this song. On the production side, we really wanted that Texas Country feel and I think my producer nailed it."
Q & A With Hunter Thomas Mounce
Q: What's been the best concert you've ever been to?
A: "The best concert I've ever been to was Eric Church at Nissan Stadium, whenever he sold it out last. Me and my roommate Christian were in the pit and that night it was a record setting crowd like 74,000 people or something. It was just so cool to see my favorite artist reach a milestone by setting the attendance record at Nissan. We were literally like 10 feet away from him; we were right there. It was crazy - like an out of body experience for me. It was worth the $100 Uber it took to get back to our house 11 miles away. That was a super cool concert for me."
Q: What advice would you give your younger self?
A: "Man, I think if I could give my younger self advice, I would say to have a little more faith and trust, a little more in the process and God. 5 years ago I never dreamed that I would be living in Nashville. People from small town Pleasant Hill usually just stay put, but I knew I had to make my way to Nashville. When I got hired at Henderson, it was such a fluky thing. They were hiring 2 people. I was the 3rd finisher so I wasn't going to get the job, but a new budget went through so they could hire me. Again, my advice would be just to have faith, trust the process and don't get too caught up in what you want to happen in the future. Also, don't be too hard on yourself and live in the moment."
Q: What's one of your most embarrassing moments?
A: "Something that I can think of off the top of my head, was one of my first full band shows. A couple months ago I was playing Bus Call at Tin Roof Broadway and I had to borrow someone's guitar. It was tuned a whole step down and for some reason I thought it was tuned a half step down. I played a song or two in the wrong key and I can laugh about it now. Overall it wasn't a big deal, but it was so embarrassing. Trying to come off as a professional and I was out here making our band sound like shit."
Q: Throughout your career in music so far, what's been one of the most valuable things you've learned?
A: "I think the most valuable thing I've learned so far is nobody is going to help you out unless you've shown that you tried to help yourself first. So, when I moved here, I was under the impression that all I had to do was know the right people because they would have to help me out. But I feel like I'm at a point where I wouldn't even want to ask for help. For me, I'm not satisfied with the amount of work and results I've gained on my own. I guess to summarize that, before people respect you and want to help you out, you’ve got to make sure you have put in the work.”