Blaine Larsen first hit the country music scene in 2004 when he released the single, “How Do You Get That Lonely,” a song asking how someone can get so lonely that they decide that this life isn’t worth living and how no one around them could see the signs. It was a pretty big hit for him and he went on to release a second album, “Rockin’ You Tonight” and is in the midst of recording his third album. This will be his first album in a few years as he took some time to get married and have a baby girl. This examiner recently ahd the privledge of talking with Blaine about his first two albums, his upcoming album, his new single, “Chillin'” and what his advice is to those young kids who are realizing that they want to pursue music.
JZ: Your first album, Off to Join the World, held your biggest hit, “How do You get That Lonely.” Personally, this song touched me because I had a friend that was having a hard time and this song really brought us closer and helped her a lot. What about this song touched you and made you put it out as the first single? Did you think it would get the response from people that it did?
Blaine: I was touched when I first heard ‘How Do You Get That Lonely’ because one of my best friends in high school had a brother who committed suicide. I saw how that affected him and his family and when I heard that song I thought of them. I knew that there were lots of people who could relate. The stories I still hear about how this song changed someones life amaze me.
I had no idea what the response would be. It was my first single and I was very green. I wish I could tell you that I knew it would be a hit, but I had no clue! I sure am thankful that it was because it gave me my start in this business doing what I love.
JZ: It gave you a pretty good start. I’m going to just go ahead and admit that I’ve been a fan of yours since that song came out. Your whole first album actually was one that my friends and I played a lot. We really connected to it and felt like you were singing to us or about us and that may have a lot to do with us being the same age.
You’ve gotten to open for people like Brad, Rascal Flatts, Gretchen Wilson and Kenny Chesney when he played Seattle’s stadium one year. What was that like? Because I know you’re from around there. Did it feel like you were playing for a hometown crowd?
Blaine: Glad you like the song.
I have always said that opening for Kenny at Quest field in my hometown was my favorite show I have ever played. The stadium was packed and I was the opener! As you know, most of the time there aren’t many folks there for the first act. It sure was a hometown crowd. They were awesome! At the end of the show I put on the jersey the Seahawks gave me and came back on stage. The crowd went wild!
JZ: Ah, yes, the Seahawks. I like them until they play my Buccaneers and then I don’t like them so much. But going back to Kenny, I noticed that on your new album, you’ve recorded a song called “Never Gonna Feel Like That Again,” and a lot of people might hear it and go “Wait, I’ve heard this before.” Do you think people will compare it to Kenny’s version that was on his No Shoes album? And what was it about the song that made you want to record it? By the way, just based on what I heard of it on your website, you do an amazing job with the song and I know of a few people already who like it better than Kenny’s.
Your new single, ‘Chillin’ is a great summer song and after seeing you play it at CMA Fest, I can tell that the fans really like it too. I have this video idea that plays through my head whenever I hear it. Are you going to make a video for it or are you just going to let the fans come up with their own visuals of what they think of when they listen to it?
Blaine: I’m sure they will compare it. Truth is we are still looking at what may be on the album and that may not be. Or we may do a six pack. We recorded a lot of songs so I’m still figuring out what the final product will be.
I don’t know if we are going to make a video on Chillin yet. I hope we do. I’ve got a lot of ideas!
JZ: I love the idea of the six packs. I just think it’s a great way to get music out there to the fans.
I’m going to veer off of my questions for a second and ask a question that one of my twitter followers wanted me to ask you. Actually, she has two. Her twitter name is @miss_chivas and she wants to know: 1) Why country music? and 2) Will you marry her? After the second one I told her that Sammie might not like that too much and she laughed and said she still loves you.
Blaine: Why country music? I think it chose me, not the other way around. It was in my blood since I was young and I can’t help but play. There is truth in this music that touches me. I was a fan long before I had the honor of being in this business. Yeah, Sammie might not like me getting married again!
JZ: And once country music is in you, you don’t ever leave it. Right? I know that’s how it is with me. Country music just tells stories, true stories that just about anyone can relate too.
With you single, ‘It Did,’ we saw another side of you. You’re still the same Blaine that released the first two albums but the songs now show how you have grown as a person and an artist. Is that because of what you’ve experienced since the last album? With getting married and becoming a father? How has having a little girl changed your music, if at all?
Blaine: I have learned so much since my early stuff. To me it feels like the start of a new career. Being married and a father teach me a lot. It lets me sing about things that I couldn’t have before and as a writer I can write about a wider range of topics. Having Zoe is the best thing that ever happened to me. She brings so much joy to Sammie and I and they both are the reason I do what I do. I want them to have the best lives that I can provide for them.
JZ: You are very active on Twitter. Do you think that Twitter and other social networking sites help an artist build their fanbase? Do you think the amount of time an artist uses these sites and how they use it affects how the fans view them and whether or not the fans will stay active in promoting singles, albums, etc?
Blaine: I think all the social networking is great. What a tool that my generation of artists has that none other has! I have seen that it affects a lot. And it is a way for me to get instant feedback. I love being able to connect with everyone on a deeper level than I would have been able to without these sites.
JZ: I just have to say that Zoe is a beautiful little girl. The pictures you’ve tweeted of the two of you, you can tell she’s a little cutie and she has alot of you in her. I’ve heard about something that you are involved with called Compassion International. What is that exactly?
Blaine: Thanks! She is a sweetie.
Compassion International is a worldwide child advocacy organization focusing on delivering children from social, economic, and spiritual poverty and growing them into responsible Christian adults. They are amazing at what they do. Anyone can sponsor a child and I encourage everyone to do it. It’s about $38 a month but the reward is eternal. They encourage correspondece with your child and you can even visit them if you want. I am going to Columbia in August to see first hand what they are doing on the ground. I’ll have a lot more to say about them after that trip. Please encourage your readers to visit compassion.com.
JZ: There a lot of younger people who want to make it in the music business. Eleven and twelve year olds that have learned to play guitar and started writing songs and a lot of them are very talented. Do you have any advice for them and trying to make it in this business?
Blaine: My advice to anyone wanting to get into the music business is to play as often and anywhere that you can. Be seen and hone your skills. Don’t try to make money. You have to do it because you love it. If you are meant to do this work work, that will take care of itself.
JZ: I’m definitely going to check out compassion.com and I promisee I’ll encourage everyone else too. It sounds like an amazing organization. Thank you so much for taking the time to do this! I really appreciate it!
Blaine: Thanks a bunch! I enjoyed it a lot!
If you’d like to learn more about Blaine Larsen, you can check out his website, twitter, facebook and youtube. To find out more about Compassion International, click here. And remember to request Blaine’s newest single, Chillin’, at your local radio station.
I want to thank Blaine Larsen again for taking the time to do this interview!