The Cody Bryan Band's latest album, Wreck Me, has been out for a few months now, but the Texas-based band's frontman said they have really picked up the pace of promoting it.
"We put out our first single, and we did our first radio tour through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Arkansas," Bryan says. "We did a lot of driving, and met a lot of interesting people."
They also encountered a lot of curious places on their radio tour. Bryan tells Billboard that the convenience store chain Buc-ee's was unlike any other store he's seen. "It's a chain of gas stations, but they are about as big as a Walmart. They have about 100 gas pumps, so you'll never have to wait." He's not exaggerating: The New Braunfels, TX, location is over 68,000 square feet!
Alas, the radio tour is about making connections, and Bryan did just that. "We were hitting about three to five stations a day -- about 70 in all on Sunday through Thursday. And we would play on the weekend. It was a crazy month and a half, but it was well worth it."
It wasn't just the pace of the radio tour that was different for Bryan. Each morning, he would start the day with a live acoustic performance on a station -- at an earlier time than he's accustomed to. "I'm used to getting up later in the day, and not singing until about six or seven at night. You get in the stations at 7:30, and sing at 8 am. It's a change of routine, for sure."
Each of the songs from Wreck Me stems from real-life experience, but the title cut (and current single) cuts deep, according to the singer. "It's about being in a relationship which is a burning love, but it's a dangerous love that ends up getting wrecked. The guy who wrote the song and I -- we talked about the same thing, going through a crappy breakup. That's what inspired it."
Bryan says "Roses" is another personal one on the album, and again, it's a first-hand take on a break-up -- and the aftermath that follows. "That was one of the last songs for the record -- one that I wrote myself. I did a lot of co-writing on the album. I had just gotten out of a bad relationship, the same one as in "Wreck Me," that inspired a lot of heartbreak.
"It's about trying to separate yourself from a past relationship, which is so tough these days because of social media. You hop on Facebook and see pictures that spark different kinds of emotions. That song is about getting rid of all of the things that remind you of that certain person that hurt you in the past -- sweeping everything out and starting fresh."
Before he struck out with his own band in 2013, Bryan paid his dues around the Austin circuit. "I was in a band called Aimless Gun, and played all throughout college. It was very much Alternative Rock style music. We played down on Sixth Street in Austin, and developed our chops there. We did a little bit of traveling, but mostly on the weekends due to college."
One of the rising stars in the Texas music scene, Bryan says the art of telling a story is important to him. "I feel like Texas music is real genuine, and a lot of it is based on true stories. That's what I base my writing on -- things that I have lived and truly feel. I just try to stay true to myself and to the music."
Bryan says the diverse musical mix you get in Austin is unlike any other place. "I don't think there's a substitute for the variety of music that you get in Austin. You never know what you're going to get. There's so much talent, just like Nashville. You can walk in any bar at any time and find the most amazing band. I think sometimes people take the good music for granted there, because you can find it so many places."
One date in the Lone Star state that Bryan is particularly excited about is Aug. 30, when he will appear at Fire Fest in Buda, TX, alongside Wade Bowen and William Clark Green. "It's my hometown. So it's going to be a great day."