Eric Church Shares the Story Behind New Single 'Heart on Fire'

Eric Church released his triple album Heart & Soul in April, and the country star is ready to launch a new single from the expansive project with the effervescent "Heart on Fire." Church and his collaborators recorded Heart & Soul during a month-long writing trip in the mountains of North Carolina in early 2020, and the singer told his record label that the song ended up being a catalyst for the entire project.

"Heart on Fire' was the first song we recorded when we got to North Carolina," he recalled. "I already had pretty much, I wrote this song by myself, but I already had this song on the rails and we were heading down the path of what this was going to be. I thought we needed to kind of break the ice and get started on something, you know, we were doing something that was tough to do – writing the song the same day we were recording it. This was the song that was kind of the icebreaker for the whole project, and I credit this song a lot for getting us to where we ended up getting to with the project."

"Heart on Fire" is an up-tempo, Southern rock-infused track looking back on a young love. Accompanied by longtime backing vocalist Joanna Cotten, Church references a number of classic rock songs during his reminiscence including Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up," Don McLean's "American Pie," Guns N' Roses' "Paradise City" and "New York Minute" by Don Henley.

"A turned up radio but that static was heavy / Couldn't make out any words but 'Take me to the levee,'" he sings. "That look on your face was full of wild desire / Soakin' my soul in gas and settin' my heart on fire." The song is the lead track to Church's Heart album, and he previously told his label that "normally if we had four songs about heart, with the way we used to do this we would cut three of them out and we'd do one. It started to be cool that this time we could lean into that sameness and the themes where you can put the songs together and know we wrote these within this much time of each other."

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The North Carolina native will take his triple album on the road this year when he begins his 55-city Gather Again Tour in Lexington, Kentucky on Sept. 17. The tour will travel through North America for the next eight months and will end with a show at Madison Square Garden in New York City on May 20, 2022.