Carly Pearce Reflects on Moving Forward Musically After Death of Producer Busbee

Carly Pearce released her self-titled sophomore album in February, a project that was produced by the late songwriter and producer busbee. Busbee also produced Pearce's debut album, 2017's Every Little Thing, and wrote many of the songs on the project after serving as a champion for Pearce and her music ahead of her record deal with Big Machine. Busbee died September shortly after being diagnosed with Glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer, and Pearce admitted during a recent media event that "it's hard" for her to move forward musically without him.

"I think that this pandemic has given me also just time to grieve him, if that makes sense, and kind of grieve... not let go of him, but also understand that I have to move on," she explained. "And I feel like in a weird way, God has given me doors. I've always been somebody that believes God will open doors that you're supposed to walk through and unexpectedly I started writing." Pearce shared that even though she just released her album in February, she has been "extremely creative" during the coronavirus pandemic and revealed that her next single will be new music.

"I've been lucky to feel like I found what is meant to be my next step through this," she said reflecting on the support she had received from busbee. "And I feel confident in that. And I know that he always wanted me to fly. He knew I struggled because of my time in Nashville. He knew that I struggled with like true confidence and was always just a little bit shy and a little unsure. And I feel like with these two records and with this time, I'm just ready to fly and, and show him that I can do it without him.

"I feel like what he did so well with is just give me confidence in a writer's room to try different things with different people, but also just own who I am in a room," she added. During her performance at the Grand Ole Opry this month, Pearce performed a new song dedicated to busbee titled "Show Me Around," a hopeful message looking forward to the day of reunion with a departed loved one.

"At his funeral, a songwriter that all of us in Nashville love named Barry Dean gave the most beautiful speech," she said ahead of the performance. "And Busbee has three little girls and a beautiful wife, and he painted this picture of heaven that was so beautiful to me, that Busbee had a map and he was getting the lay of the land and figuring out all of the places, just like Disneyland, that he wanted to show his family and show all of us. If anybody's ever lost anybody, this felt like a really cool way to look at our loved ones that are going to meet us in heaven and show us around."