Drew Baldridge Interview
by Nigel Sharpe for Country Music News International
Drew Baldridge was literally moving cows with his brother on the family farm in Patoka, Illinois, when he fully realized his musical destiny. After years of living in Nashville and experimenting with his sound, Drew understood his new direction. All it took was a trip back to his hometown to get back to his roots. To connect to the country.
That small-town feel is reflected in Baldridge’s newest single, “Senior Year,” which is out now via his own Patoka Sounds banner. Written written alongside Tim Nichols (Hall of Fame songwriter) and Jordan Walker (Luke Combs), “Senior Year” has captured the attention of country radio as it connects with fans whose school years have been “cancelled” due to COVID-19. Students, parents, teachers and more are finding solace in this song as they miss the experiences that come during the culmination of high school. Organic fan discovery led the song to chart on both Billboard and Mediabase with no major label support.
Before breaking through with new music in 2020, Baldridge first debuted on the country music charts with his R&B-infused single “Dance With Ya” in 2016. But sophomore single “Middle of Nowhere Kids” was really the tune that led Baldridge back to his traditional roots. Written by Tony Lane, Randy Montana, and John Pierce, “Middle of Nowhere Kids” conjures up those images of growing up in Patoka, population 550.
And as he has done for most of his career, Baldridge achieved radio success on his own terms – with extreme drive and belief in the message. As with “Senior Year,” “Middle of Nowhere Kids” became a Top 50 song with no major label help. The connection between Baldridge and his passionate fanbase is true and authentic.
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