When Chris Janson released his sophomore Everybody album in September, he was already a seasoned writer, singer and performer -- and used to plenty of hard work. The record, which so far boasts the No.1 hit "Fix a Drink," followed his debut Buy Me a Boat, released in 2015 on Warner Bros. But the record might have never even seen the light of day, if not for his wife, Kelly Lynn, believing so strongly in the title track.
"My wife actually took the original artwork [for "Buy Me a Boat"] on an iPhone 6 in our backyard," Janson reveals to PopCulture.com. "I was totally pissed and did not want to take it, because I was independent at the time. I was writing songs. At that time, I was a full-time songwriter. Finally, my wheels were turning fast enough where I was really getting some good success with that, and then all of a sudden Bobby Bones played the song, and then everybody else in the country started just blowing it up. I'm talking about from all conglomerates of radio, everybody. And, it happened virtually out of thin air."
While it might seem like fortuitous timing to have the famed radio host play "Buy Me a Boat" the same day it was released, Janson insists the sequence of events was entirely coincidental.
"We released it on iTunes, it came out the same day that it was played, and it was not planned," Janson maintains. "That's the thing that most people don't know. It was not planned at all. We just were going to put something on iTunes, because I had a little touring business going -- just independent songs, those kinds of things, and playing where we could, when we could, for what money we could. The nepotism happened all at the same time, and it just so happens that it came out on iTunes the day it got played, and it shot to number one, and all these things. Then we just made a record. We got with Warner Brothers, and it all happened within a few weeks time. But we owned everything. If it weren't for my wife, Buy Me A Boat would have never happened had it not been for her."
The Missouri native might write and sing every song on his records, but he says it's his supportive spouse who deserves #100% credit" for launching his career to the next level.
"I have a business mind, but not to that extent," explains Janson. "I am tight with money, I am extremely frugal, and I don't like to spend my money. I work really hard for it. So, when we were independent, money doesn't come so easy when you're independent. And I was working really hard, and saving every penny I could. We have a bunch of kids, and a life, and she was like, 'We're going to put this on iTunes,' and I said, 'I'm not spending the money to do that, the right way.' She convinced me to, and the very next day it paid itself back, which was unbelievable."
While it might have taken Janson years for him to achieve might what have seemed like becoming an overnight success, Janson has been far too busy to realize how far his career has come.
"I'm the kind of person that things don't really ever hit me until they do. We put out the Buy Me A Boat record and it seems like, all of a sudden, now we have the Everybody record, which is album number two. It's just kind of a whirlwind for me. I don't ever stop. My wife and I never stop. We tour all the time, we're constantly working and doing something. So, when your wheels are spinning that hard all the time you don't really have much time to stop and reflect on the high times. I'm pretty much a head down, eyes closed, nose to the grindstone kind of guy, as it is. But, to say the least, in a nutshell, it's pretty humbling."
Janson will hit the road with Cole Swindell in2018, joining Lauren Alaina in serving as the opening acts on Swindell's Reason to Drink Tour. All of Janson's upcoming shows are listed on his website. Purchase Everybody on Amazon and iTunes.