I think it’s safe to say that Old Dominion have fast become one of the UK’s favourite Country groups. After a successful first C2C performance from them in 2016, Old Dominion have been the talk of the UK fans non- stop and, at this point, they had only released one album – Meat and Candy. With the album being so top – form, we wondered if it could ever be beaten – but then they came back with a new album, Happy Endings, which is just as good, if not better. The UK fans have been itching for a return from Old Dominion and were delighted when they announced they were heading back to the UK to support Thomas Rhett. Excited as we were, we craved more as they deserved their own headline shows but, to feed our hunger, they soon announced a main stage slot at next year’s C2C.
During their UK tour with Thomas Rhett, I caught up with Old Dominion in Birmingham. Upon my arrival to Old Dominion’s dressing room, Trevor Rosen was mid way through the battle of trying to locate his luggage from the airport and was having difficulty contacting a human. Whilst being asked to sit and wait for the others to arrive, a half naked (top half!) Geoff came out of a doorway in the back of the room, and was rather surprised to see me sitting there. Geoff then asked me to hand him his jeans which, rather blushingly, I did, haha!
As the rest of the band entered the room, with Geoff fully dressed, they laughed about how they are billed as Old Domination on the venue billboard. After a few laughs about the situation and lost luggage discussion, the interview commenced – enjoy!
How are you? How are Old Domination, haha?
Trevor – Old Domination, welcome to Old Domination.
Other than the obvious bag mishaps, how are you all?
Matt – Catching up on some sleep.
Welcome back to the UK. How was last night? How was the Roundhouse?
Brad – It was awesome!
Trevor- It was great.
It’s a great venue isn’t it?
Geoff – I didn’t know that it has so much history. The Doors played there.
Brad – They said it got run down and then revitalised about fifteen years ago.
I believe so. Did you go around Camden at all?
Brad – Yeah.
Matt – It’s beautiful.
Tell us about the audience, because I know so many people were there for you.
Brad – People keep saying that.
Trevor – That’s what one of my friends in the audience said.
Matt – Oh really? Did Pete say that?
Trevor – Yeah, he said most people are here for you, ha!
Matt – The audience were great for us man, it was unbelievable – it was a nice way to start it off.
Most people, if not all, were there for you as well as Thomas, especially as some never got the chance to see you at C2C, with the limit in numbers on certain stages.
You are here for a bit longer than last time, covering a lot of other cities – will you get to sight see?
Matt – I walked around (Birmingham) this morning to the Bull Ring. There were so many people it started to freak me out a little bit. It was insane how many people were there, you couldn’t move.
It does get mad there.
How has life been since The Happy Endings release?
Matt –It’s great; it’s a little nerve wracking to put out a second album, but once we got it out there and it started working it feels good now. It is allowing us to build our set list a little bit with all our new songs.
We love it here in the UK; it has become one of our favourite albums of the year. I spoke to you on the phone (Matt) a couple of months ago and said that it was ‘toddler approved’, as my son kept dancing to it. He especially loves Hotel Key.
Matt: Hahaha! You know I was going to say that that song felt good last night.
Talk us through Written In The Sand – and how do you go about selecting a single?
Trevor – It’s a process. There are so many different factors; we get a general feeling of what we like the best and what we feel makes sense, we talk to the manager, we talk to the label.
Brad – Yeah – we were going to put out Not Everything’s About You, but that song (Written In The Sand) had only been out a couple of weeks on the album, and when we played it at a show it seemed to be connecting with them so we released that.
Does Country radio play a big part in terms of what you think they will play more?
Brad – They do play a big part yes; they have been so great to us and have given all of our singles great play.
Trevor – Yeah, that has taken it out of the equation a little bit. They have been pretty favourable to us and seem to be ready to play whichever one we give them, after taking everything into account. But it is more about what we feel like we want to say and trust that it will work. It’s worked so far – we haven’t had a dud yet so…
Each song off the album is single-worthy.
New York at Night is quite a different sound – tell is a bit about that.
Trevor – Well, Brad’s actually singing on that one.
Matt – Yeah, Brad sings that one. We are a band that is made up of a lot of talented songwriters and singers and there is no reason we shouldn’t show people that, as it was something we did for a long time in our live shows, when we wrote for other people. Trevor would play a song that he wrote and Brad would sing a song that he wrote – it just became part of our show and the story of who we are. As we continue to grow as artists, it only makes sense that that stays.
You are coming back to C2C and this time to join the main stage. We always say there is one success story of C2C every year and that year it was you guys and Maren Morris.
Like Maren and yourself, who jumped from pop-ups to main stage, we like to think we are responsible for your success, haha! Firstly, how was your first C2C?
Brad – It wasn’t the main stage that year but we got to play lots of different stages, a place with bowling…….
Geoff – Yeah, and there was one little theatre thing.
Matt – The Indigo one was where they woke us up right before, hah!
Geoff- Yeah, we were asleep right until we went on stage!
Wow, well you couldn’t tell because I had a great time.
Matt – Haha!
Geoff – Was it you (Matt) who had the towel marks?
Matt – Ha, yeah – I had towel marks coz I was using a towel as a pillow and they woke us up and I had to get up. They said “It’s time to go” and we had this bottle of tequila, so we all took a shot of tequila, ha, and went on stage – and I had this huge towel print on my face!
Oh no! Well, it was dark in there, so I am sure no one noticed, haha.
So to follow on, next year you WILL be on the main stage and we couldn’t be more excited. It must be nice to have that success story and I would like to think the UK are responsible for that success, haha.
Matt – We are so excited; y’all think we are bigger than we are.
Well you are to us, as I mentioned; you could have sold out this tour on your own.
Trevor – Well, we will be back.
Matt – It is better to build it I think; maybe we could have, but next time we will be solidly ready for it.
I have to ask you about the Jimmy Kimmel Mean Tweets – Country Music Edition.
Brad – That was so funny!
Geoff – We love those.
How does it work? They really do pull out the most hilarious ones – do they just sit you in a room with a selected few?
Matt – Yeah.
Trevor – It’s about half a dozen I think?
Trevor – We just read them all and they show whichever one gets the best reaction.
Matt – Like F. U. Old Dominion suck my d…. hahaha!
All laugh a lot.
Trevor – Did that go on TV?
Matt – That’s the one they aired, yeah hahahaha.
Brad – Who read it – was it you? (Matt)
Matt – Haha, yeah.
Brad – Your reading was better.
All crying with laughter.
It is funny but poor Dan + Shay seem to get the most abuse, bless them.
Matt – Haha, yeah.
I always feel so guilty when Little Big Town get it, because Kimberley is the sweetest person and she always looks so hurt.
Matt – Oh yeah, I know she goes like ‘Aww, noo.’
You have posted that you got to see Tom Petty on the last night of his tour. That must have made it extra special? Did you all go?
Matt – Er, Geoff did not go. We were there for the very last show. We spoke to someone earlier who said he didn’t play anything that was classic – he only played a couple of his old songs – so we went into it with the expectation that we were going to be a little disappointed, but he played everything; man, it was awesome!
How has your tour with Kenny Chesney been, as you work with him quite a lot?
Matt – Yeah, we have been touring with him for a couple of years and it has always been amazing. We are excited as we start back up with him in April. Every year gets bigger and better.
He still doesn’t come over here; I hear he doesn’t want to.
Matt – He doesn’t come over – he doesn’t seem to do that.
Trevor – You know what, maybe we will have him open for us.
One silly question, as I don’t know which one of you tweeted this, but Is The bird the Word – did you find out what the bird is?
Matt laughs a lot.
Brad – What was the question?
Matt – Because I tweeted about it, haha.
Brad – We got an answer didn’t we?
Matt – Yeah , it’s a dance right?
Brad – Yeah, we were told it’s a dance.
Have you seen the Family Guy episode on that?
Matt – You know what, lots of people suggested that, hahah.
Once that song is in your head………..
Matt – It’s stuck, yeah – haha.
Last question. You are nominated for an AMA – how does that feel? Are you still here when it is on?
Geoff – We will still be here, yeah.
How will you hear the result?
Brad – That we lost? Yeah, we will get a phone call, haha.
Matt – Our mums will tell us, haha.
It is for Best Group / Duo?
Matt – Yeah, so we are up against FGL who are tough to beat, .
Well, you are the worthy winners in my eyes and ears.
All : Thank you.
Thank you so much for talking to me today. Apologies for interrupting the hunt for your bag and for interrupting you (Geoff) in the shower, haha .
All: Thank you so much Hannah.