While the singer-songwriter has made a name for himself on tracks cut by Jason Aldean, (“1994”), Lee Brice (“Parking Lot Party”), and his first No. 1 for Florida Georgia Line (“Round Here”), he is seeing success on his own. His current single, the album’s title track, “It Goes Like This” is Rhett’s first No. 1 and has managed to spend two weeks at the top of the Billboard Country chart. Rhett told Radio.com how he came to cut the track.
“My dad [Nashville singer-songwriter Rhett Akins] wrote the song ‘It Goes Like This.’ He sent it to me and I played it to my phone speakers just sitting there by my ear,” he explained. “From the first listen I was hooked. I loved the simply brilliant lyrics of ‘It Goes Like This,’ talking about writing a song for a girl. I just thought it was really a cool song and I knew that girls would love it and that guys would love it.”
Rhett said he knew the song was going to be career changing.
“This song has been a wild ride. It’s my first Top 10 song ever and my first gold record ever. There’s a lot of firsts that came along with the song.”
Rhett co-wrote eight of the album’s 12 tracks, but when selecting a song he didn’t write himself, he said he has to feel something when he initially hears the song before cutting it.
“A lot of times when I hear songs I imagine myself singing them live. If I can’t imagine myself singing that song live, it’s not going to work for me,” he said. “I have to be able to see myself singing it live and I’ve got to hear myself singing it in the studio and doing it for the next 20 years of my life in order for me to put it on a record.”
It Goes Like This kicks off with the fast-paced “Whatcha Got In That Cup” and Rhett said he wanted to grab listeners right away.
“’Whatcha Got In That Cup’ is a very, very rocking song. That opening lick immediately lets you know what you’re in for on the record,” he said. “Off the bat you’re like, ‘OK, this is definitely different.’ Your brain is open to more things and once you listen to the entire record you’re ready for every song that comes your way.”
While Rhett’s songwriting skills have helped him climb his way up the charts, he thanks his dad, singer-songwriter Rhett Akins, for his advice along the way. The two often write together and his dad helped write five songs on the album.
“Dad was an artist in the ’90s and now he’s one of the biggest songwriters in Nashville. I’ve gotten to learn a lot from him. He was the one always giving me advice and telling me which roads to avoid and which roads to go down. He’s been a very solid advice giver,” Rhett said. “He’s become not only a dad but a great friend and awesome songwriting partner. He let me do this thing a lot on my own and never took credit for any of it. A lot of the credit is due to him for getting me my start, getting me to know people in town and teaching me how to write songs and sing them and play. It’s cool to get in the room with him and write.”
(Courtesy: Big Machine Label Group)
It Goes Like This Track List
01. Whatcha Got In That Cup
02. Something To Do With My Hands
03. Get Me Some Of That
04. Call Me Up
05. It Goes Like This
06. Make Me Wanna
07. Front Porch Junkies (Remix)
08. In A Minute
09. Take You Home
10. Sorry For Partyin’
11. All American Middle Class White Boy
12. Beer With Jesus