Jason Isbell on How His Life Changed After He Stopped Being a 'Rock'n'Roll Cliche' and 'Something More Than Free' Going No. 1

It’s been a huge year for Jason Isbell. With his most recent album Something More Than Free, Isbell, landed himself in at the No. 1 spot of the Top Country Albums, Top Rock Albums and Folk Albums charts. And he’s been nominated for two Grammys for best Americana album and best American roots song for "24 Frames.

Jason Isbell on His Soul-Baring No. 1 Album 'Something More Than Free'

“My goal was the same as it had been with the previous album and albums before. I wanted to take the best set of songs in that I could and I wanted to record them in a way that sounded human and sounded natural," Isbell tells Billboard about Something More Than Free.

“Jason shows up with these masterpieces. I've never seen anyone show up with the quality of song he does,” says Isbell collaborator and producer David Cobb.

And first getting that news about going No. 1 was a shock to Isbell -- but he wasn't quite ready to spread the word to anyone who would listen. "Most of my friends are not people who've had a No. 1 record so you don't want to start calling them and say, 'Hey, guess what just happened to me?'" he says with a laugh.

Below, watch Isbell and his team talk about the making of Something More Than Free and how once he stopped being "a rock'n'roll cliche," his life changed.

Billboard Year in Music 2015