There’s nothing wrong with wearing a hat and cowboy boots if you want to be a country singer. But when you open your mouth, have something new to say. Have your own style.
Well, it’s great to have a Sony Records or a BMG or a Warner Brothers pocketbook. Money is a challenge when you’re funding your own start-up costs and everything. But I feel like it’s doable. You just have to be very careful.
Country music as we know it would be vastly different if it weren’t for George Jones. He’s in our musical DNA. All country artists will have to figure out how to even begin to live up to his kind of legacy. ‘Honky Tonk Heaven,’ here he comes… though we’re not ready to let go.
Even when I was with Arista records, which was the freest part of my career, you still have to run a lot of stuff by committee whether it’s a budget, or the album artwork, or how may songs you get to record. This was total freedom. We had nobody to answer to. We didn’t have to get anything approved.