Kenny Chesney was far from an overnight success story. The Tennessee native didn’t have a Top 40 single on his freshman In My Wildest Dreams album, released in 1994, and it took him four years (and seven more singles) before he had a No. 1 hit, with “She’s Got It All” in 1997.
Plenty of artists would have given up by then, but Chesney never considered quitting as an option.
“What sustained me early, especially in those first couple of records — when it wasn’t a very popular thing to do, to play my records at that point — what sustained me was that I had no Plan B,” Chesney said on the Connective Tissue podcast (via iHeart). “I truly loved what I was doing and I believed in my heart that one day, that I would see where it would take me. And each time that I got to a different place where I felt like that I was making headway, I looked at that as a building block. And I looked at that as validation that I’m on the right path.”
“When I heard ‘Take Her Home,’ I just laughed,” Chesney said of his latest track. “It was everything life is made of in less than four minutes. It’s true, honest and all the stuff that’s easy to forget. All those details and little moments? The deep-cut Cheap Trick, the black-and-pink suitcase in the back of the truck, a seven-pound, five-ounce baby?
“That’s what makes these kinds of life changes what they are,” he continued. “And it’s funny: no matter what stage you’re in, you really are always scared. That’s how you know it’s gonna be worth it.”
A release date for Chesney’s next set of tunes has yet to be released, but the 55-year-old has been working on it for a while, making sure it is just right for him, and his fans.
“The one thing I can say about it is that it is still in motion,” Chesney told Audacy‘s Katie Neal last year. “People ask me when it’s going to come out, and the best answer I have honestly is, ‘When I feel like it’s done.’ It’s easy to rush it, and it’s easy to put music out when people think it might be time, but I think I’ve earned the right to get it right. I mean, I love it now, but I want to be in love.”