Chase Rice stopped by The Bobby Bones Show today (February 16) to talk about his new album, I Hate Cowboys and All Dogs Go To Hell. Why he put a picture of his dad on the album cover. What his first dog means to him. And he answers uncomfortable questions where we get to find out his relationship status...
Rice’s new album, I Hate Cowboys and All Dogs Go To Hell, is a reintroduction of himself in country music, and the most personal work he’s put out to date. The album cover is a vintage picture of his late father, Daniel Rice, who passed away when Chase was 22. The new album is his sixth album, but he says it’s the album he’s always wanted to make and finally got the chance to.
The polarizing title of Rice’s new album refers to two songs on the album, “I Hate Cowboys” and “All Dogs Go To Hell,” but those titles aren’t what they seem. “I Hate Cowboys” isn’t about hating cowboys, it’s more about the stereotype that cowboys have. How one can walk into a bar and leave with the girl you were hoping to talk to. He woke up with the title “All Dogs Go To Hell,” but don’t let the title fool you, the song is not about hating dogs and hoping they end up in hell, it’s the complete opposite. The whole song has a George Strait “Ocean Front Property” theme to it, where the song is full of nothing but false statements. The title shouldn’t be taken seriously as Rice sings; “And boots ain't made for cowboys and Chevy don't make trucks. And fall ain't made for football and droppin' eight point bucks. Lynchburg ain't shippin' and sippin' a cold beer don't help. And I don't miss you, baby. And all dogs go to hell.”
Rice said the song is a nod to his two-year-old black lab, Jack, who’s picture is on the back cover of the album. Jack is the first dog he’s ever owned and said he’s never felt a love like he has for his dog and constantly tells him “I love you.” Rice admits it is weird for him to say and even harder for him to hear. He thinks it may be because his father would always say it to him, and when he died it took that away from him.
Rice’s relationship with his father was awesome, calling him the type of dad “who didn’t miss games.” always put him and his brothers first, and a person everyone loved. Rice remembers playing guitar for his dad in their house and he encouraged him to pursue a career in music. His dad died from a heart attack when Rice was 22, right before he was about to move to Nashville. Just seven days before he died, Rice spoke with him on the phone and recalls him talking about his battle with skin cancer and how it’ll be something he has to live with for the rest of his life. Little did both know that only seven days later he’d be gone. As Rice has gotten older, he’s learned to appreciate the sacrifices his dad made, especially since Rice said he lives “selfishly.” When asked if his dad would be happy with his picture as the album cover, Rice wasn’t sure. He asked his mother and brother how they felt about it, and they gave him the go ahead.
Rice got his start in Nashville co-writing Florida Georgia Line’s debut single “Cruise,” which he called a blessing and a curse. After that song came out, he wasn’t sure what his next move was. The rocking country track is a stark difference to the music on his new album. He wrote or co-wrote the 13 new songs all on an acoustic guitar. That was the process he always wanted to do for an album but was never sure how. With his new album, you can hear Rice has reflected and done the internal work to not only make better music, but also to be a better person for himself.
Something about Rice feels different. He’s been through the ringer in Nashville but is now in a nicer and healthier spot. For years, he had a chip on his shoulder and felt like everyone was against him and he had something to prove. Everything felt like competition to him. Now, he’s worked through all that and is grateful for where he’s at, admitting that sometimes he still goes back to that dark place, but now, he doesn't stay there as long and knows how to pull himself out. He also is no longer trying to be someone he’s not by making music he doesn't feel connected to. He said his new album truly feels like he’s being himself.
His new song “Bench Seat” is his most venerable song on the new album. He was scared to put it out because he wasn’t sure if he wanted people to know that side of him. His fear was showing people he’d been in a dark place before, which he said was dumb to be scared about. While creating the new album, he worked with producer Oscar Charles, the first time he’s only worked with one producer on a project. Together, they converted his living room into a makeshift studio and created what Rice calls the best music of his career.
Before leaving the show, Rice answered some uncomfortable questions from listeners, where we learned more about his personal life. When asked if he’s ever posed with a fish he never really caught on Instagram, he said never. A listener asked if he really drinks whiskey on stage or if it’s apple juice. “Definitely not apple juice,” he said. His drinking habits have changed on stage. He no longer drinks alcohol before going on stage to prove to himself he doesn't need it. While on stage he’ll still have a drink, but sometimes it’s tequila or whiskey or just water. When asked what kind of truck he drives, he said a Chevy 2500 because he has a bison farm and needs to transport the bison. Finally, when asked about his current relationship status, he admitted he is single for the first time by choice. He realized he had gone through relationships where eight-months in he’d be like “I guess we’re dating.” He no longer wants to be like this and said he’ll only get in a relationship again when he really means it.
His new album I Hate Cowboys and All Dogs Go To Hell is out now and his Way Down Yonder Tour kicks off March 3rd and runs through July 1st. Tickets are on sale now!