Interstate 75 from South Georgia to Tennessee can be a long drive. MCA Nashville recording artist Kip Moore knows this for a fact. The singer remembers making that trek from his native Tifton just a few years ago, questioning himself every mile of the way.
"I thought that I lost my damn mind," Moore recalled to Billboard. "I had a great job and a serious girlfriend at the time, and I'd never had a serious girlfriend. Deep down in my gut, I felt like I was being pulled to Nashville. I just felt it was my calling to do this. I had my backpack and my guitar, and a truck that broke down by the end of the day. I knew it was going to be the end of the relationship with me moving that far away," he confessed.
It wasn't easy, but Moore was determined. "The hardest thing was the first three months. That's kind of the breaking point, when you get out and see how talented everyone is. There was one day where I had my bags packed, and I thought I had made a mistake. But, I had a spiritual moment, and I made up my mind to stay, and I've been here ever since."
These days, Moore is glad he didn't make that trek back down south through towns such as Acworth and McDonough. His debut album, "Up All Night," was released this week, and his current single, "Somethin' 'Bout A Truck," has climbed to No. 9 on the Billboard Top Country Songs chart.
The singer admits he had opportunities to do other things. Not too long after coming to Music City, the singer was made a very enticing job offer, but he knew why he had made the move.
"You run into different singers and writers who want to do this, and the only advice I have for them is that you have to make up your mind that this is what you want to do, and it's the only thing that is going to bring you happiness. For me, that's what it was," he remembered. "I knew if I took a full-time job, it was going to take my time and energy from my writing and trying to pursue a career. I think that sometimes people will take these jobs, because they need the money. I understand that, but I always thought if I can just make enough to get by and chase this thing, I can make it happen. That's what I made my mind up to do. That was the only thing that would make me happy," he said.
He admits that once he signed on the dotted line with MCA that the work only really started. "That's why I wrote the song 'Faith When I Fall,' which is on the record. I wrote that the day after I signed the record deal. It was one of those things where I knew I had reached a goal in my life, but the work had just begun. It never stops, and right now, it's as hard as it has ever been. But, I have faith I'm going to get where I'm going to get."
That faith was helped out during his college years with athletic success playing golf. When asked about the similarities between sports and music, he said "Both are competitive businesses, and I think I was born with a competitive bone, but I think that sports gave me that resiliency that I needed to make it through getting my teeth kicked in during those first few years in town.
How are his emotions this week with the release of his very first album? "I don't know if I have a word to describe it. I put every ounce of my heart and soul into it, and so many people seem so excited about it, and are ready to get it. It's an emotional record. I studied albums from Springsteen, Jackson Browne, or 'Red Headed Stranger' by Willie Nelson and the one thing I took from all that was that those records moved me. I think this record will make people laugh, cry, remember loves from the past, just make them feel good."