San Angelo native in top ten of Texas Country Music Chart; Here’s a Q&A with Case Hardin
| San Angelo Standard-Times
SAN ANGELO — Case Hardin doesn’t know where his love of music comes from, but when a classmate asked him to join a band in 2013, he said yes.
Now, the San Angelo native’s latest single has earned the top spot on the Texas Regional Radio Report and 7th on the Texas Country Music Chart in November.
“It’s amazing how far we’ve come in 8 years,” Hardin said. “I was ecstatic when we found out.”
While hitting the road and performing his single, “Alcohol Abuse,” Hardin mentioned that looking into the crowd and seeing people sing with him was a cool experience.
“Every time we play ‘Alcohol Abuse,’ … people would recognize it and sing back,” he said. “I knew the potential was there. That’s the first single off of our upcoming record, so it’s only up from here.”
The song that earned Hardin a top spot is one of four singles on his upcoming album “Lucky Him,” which will be tentatively released at the end of January 2022. The album will feature more West Texas-centric songs, including “Back to Brady.”
Hardin took some time from his schedule to talk about how he went from a San Angelo ranch to a rising star in the country music charts, along with advice and behind the scenes information.
What was it like growing up in a San Angelo ranch family, then turning to music?
I was born and raised in San Angelo, and my family’s ranch is around here. My dad competed in the San Angelo Rodeo.
I was just a Central High School kid and I had a friend in physics class say “Hey, we need a bass player…can you play?” I said I could start, and that’s where we started.
Our first shot was a benefit at the House of FiFi DuBois in 2013, at this little stage in the back corner. I’d been trying really, really hard to be an act, and there was a bar owner in there. I heard he went around and asked people if this was something they would listen to. I guess he heard enough yeses, because we finally got into the old Coach Club.
We played for 4 hours and only knew 20 songs, and we were awful. I don’t know why people stuck around, but I’m glad they did. It’s amazing how far we’ve come.
What went into creating the song “Alcohol Abuse”?
We got the song from a buddy of mine named Bernie Nelson, who has a friend in Nashville — Billy Yates. We were able to talk with him and he said “take the song. I’ve already written it and I’m not going to do anything with it.”
I love the song, and wanted to see if I could sing all those alcohols (There are 22 different types and brands of alcohol Hardin sings, one after the other, near the end of the song). In the studio, I couldn’t … and my producer told me to take a lap around the studio to open my lungs. I did, and we did it in one take. It was awesome and a lot of fun.
What are some of your favorite venues you’ve performed at?
I’ve played some festivals that were fun, but there’s one place that I had on my bucket list from the first day I started playing — my hometown coliseum. We finally got the chance to play there when we performed with Aaron Watson and Pat Green. It was a blast.
Lately, we’ve gotten to play Fredericksburg, Midland-Odessa, Fort Worth and everywhere in-between. It’s just a blast from Corpus Christi all the way up to Amarillo. It’s so much fun to be able to be a part of people’s lives.
The best location would be Billy Bob’s up in Fort Worth, it’s one of the biggest and best. I’ve been there as a fan and played there.
Which musicians inspire you?
I’m a 90s baby, and I’ve always loved going to rodeos. There, you’d hear Tracy Lawrence, George Strait, Tracy Byrd, and Garth Brooks. Also Brooks and Dunn and all those guys from the 90s.
Recently, there are some new guys coming out like John Pardi and Cody Johnson, and those guys are doing it right and playing real country. It’s just fun to be able to play alongside those guys.
Who is on your bucket list to perform with?
I’d love to play with one of those 90s country heroes. With the nostalgia in me, I’d have to say Garth Brooks or George Strait. Garth Brooks’ shows have just so much energy in them and that’s just something I really love.
I’d also like to play with Cody Johnson again. He puts on a great, high-energy show.
Is there anything else you’d like people to know?
To people outside of San Angelo, we’ll definitely be out your direction in 2022. We’ll definitely be seeing you and look forward to seeing you at our show real soon.
What can people expect for the future?
We just signed with one of Garth Brook’s management team, and we’re going to promote the heck out of this next record, “Lucky Him,” which comes out in January. We’re looking really busy for 2022 and we’re just super excited to get out there and play.
It’s going to be awesome and we’re ready. We’re hungry, and it’s going to be something that I think everybody should look forward to.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into the music business?
Advertise, advertise, advertise. We advertise for every show, and at the beginning, I can’t tell you how many people would say “Oh, I didn’t even know you were playing.” It kind of got to me after a while to where I was saying, “I never want to hear this again.”
So, we got promotion and booking teams and everything else just followed. With promotions, the main thing is just getting yourself and your music out there.
Alana Edgin is a journalist covering Crime and Courts in West Texas. Send her a news tip at email@example.com.
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