Touring to support his sophomore album, 2006’s “Nothing Left to Lose,” gave singer-songwriter Mat Kearney a clear vision of what he wanted to do on his latest release, “City of Black and White.”
“I wanted to lift the energy level up some on this record,” says Kearney, 30, an Oregon native who now lives in Nashville, Tenn. “The last album was 12 of the first 20 songs I ever wrote, so I didn’t know what I was doing or where to explore. I was just trying to capture what I had done.
“For this record, I’d been out touring and found those areas I wanted to explore. We started with 30 songs and just went with the ones that felt right. It was that simple.”
Kearney did, however, take some time off the road as well, doing “what normal people do.” But, he acknowledges, his definition of “normal” is slightly skewed by his chosen profession.
“Working 9 to 5 is really weird to me,” he says with a laugh. “But just being in the same house for an extended period of time, that alone is revolutionary for me. Not living in this moving home where you’re like gypsy circus people or something, that’s a kind of normal I don’t usually get ... and that sticking around really influenced me, I think.”
Mat Kearney and Diane Birch perform Friday (Oct. 2) at Saint Andrews Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 with a $60 six-pack. Call (313) 961-6358 or visit www.livenation.com.
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