Keith Urban on music during quarantine: "We're always gonna play somehow, some way"

You could say that Keith City has come a rustic mile this 12 months. He has a brand spanking new album able to drop, and he’s going to be on best of the rustic international later this week, as host of the Academy of Nation Track Awards (airing Wednesday night time on CBS).

However like such a lot of folks, he was once stranded at house this spring with the quarantine, and he had a tricky time being used to existence as a touring musician without a position to move.

Correspondent Tracy Smith requested City, “But even so tune, what have you ever been doing right through quarantine?”

“Simply kicking again,” he laughed. “I confess that I used to be – I did not transition easily into this new method of doing issues.”

“How did you react within the preliminary days and weeks?”

“I used to be gonna put my sweatpants on, sit down at the sofa, watch TV with the circle of relatives, and wait ’til the entire thing blows over,” City responded.

And, he stated, it took a just right kick within the pants to get him off that sofa: “I simply did not do the rest. Simply did not anything for it gave the impression of eternity for me.”

What pulled him out of it? “The turning level got here, I’ve a chum of mine who I name occasionally for recommendation. And I used to be telling him what was once happening. And I am like, ‘I will be able to’t do that and I will be able to’t do this and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.’ And he stated, ‘Keith, is there the rest that you simply can do?’

“And inside of that decision, I began to pivot. And I realize it sounds so tacky, however truly, that is what it was once. I pivoted over in opposition to what I may do.”

Keith City in his studio.

CBS Information

“You were given going once more – I really like that recommendation, I am gonna use that on my youngsters,” Smith stated.

“It is more uncomplicated stated than executed, let me inform you!”

However as soon as the 52-year-old celebrity were given again within the sport, issues began to occur, like a get advantages live performance at a Nashville drive-in.

In Might Keith City carried out a live performance for frontline staff on the Stardust drive-in theatre outdoor Nashville. About 200 well being care staff (who attended in 125 cars) had been invited to the gig.

CBS Information

Smith requested, “So, let’s communicate concerning the drive-in live performance. You probably did the primary drive-in live performance again in Might. It was once truly one of the most first that a musician did. Did you move into that being a little bit frightened?”

“Yeah, completely!” City stated. “I imply, I am enjoying a drive-in!  Nice! Did not have that at the checklist of items to do in my existence, however right here we move, you understand?”

However, he added, “I used to be so thankful that we had been ready to do it in any respect, and in particular thankful that we were given to do it for all of the frontline staff.”

“May just that be the way forward for traveling, for now no less than – drive-in live shows?”

“I’m hoping now not, Tracy. Please, no!” he laughed.

In many ways, the chaos of 2020 adopted City into the recording studio, too. His newest album, “The Pace of Now, Phase 1,” was once completed beneath the cloud of the pandemic, and, he says, you’ll be able to really feel it within the tune.


Capitol Nashville

“There is a chew of this file, most probably a just right 3rd of it that would not have came about with out what we went thru,” City stated. “I might say I had 70% of the file completed. So, a few of these songs got here on account of the days, from the days, and had been even created right through that length as smartly.”

As an example, the music “Out the Cage” is set one thing numerous other folks can relate to only now:  an amazing want to get away.

In fact, now not each and every new music is concerning the new state of the arena:  “Polaroid” is a snapshot of excellent occasions in days long gone by way of.

From time to time I overlook who we had been again then
That Saturday night time stealing chilly beer and cigarettes
At a area we did not know, dressed in our now-vintage garments
Having a look at this picture

Oh, I take into accout somebody pronouncing, “Smile”
Who would have idea we would nonetheless be smiling now?

Keith City – Polaroid by way of
KeithUrbanVEVO on

Smith requested, “Is there truly a Polaroid?”

“After I moved to Nashville, I lived on this, simply, rundown area in a questionable a part of the town,” stated City. “And we had been all stuffed in there, and we used to throw essentially the most insane events. And any individual foolishly gave us a Polaroid digicam, and the refrigerator would get lined in snapshots of those encounters. All I will be able to say is, I am happy you’ll be able to burn Polaroids!”

“So, they not exist?”

“No. I’m hoping now not!”

And here is every other just right factor that got here out of being quarantined: City’s been doing loose on-line live shows for his enthusiasts.  

Smith requested, “You will have additionally been enjoying some Instagram live shows with the most efficient backup dancer I have noticed shortly.”

“Now not dangerous!” he remarked.

“Is that simply roughly a spontaneous factor that is been going down?”

“Yeah. As a result of, you understand, we wanna play, and I wished a guitar tech. So, you understand, put my spouse to paintings.”

It does not harm that his guitar tech is among the most renowned girls on this planet.

Smith requested, “In this album, there are a few songs with lyrics about how a lady can save a person. And I am questioning if that truly rings true for you?”

“Oh, yeah, infinitely true for me,” City responded.

Nicole Kidman and Keith City had been in combination since 2005, during the just right, the dangerous, and the downright terrible.

In a 2016 “Sunday Morning” profile, Smith interviewed Kidman, who talked concerning the time that City stored her, when she misplaced her dad, Dr. Tony Kidman (who’d died abruptly of a middle assault), and City rushed to her facet. 

Smith requested Kidman, “How did you stand up?”

“As a result of I had a husband that got here proper again,” she responded. “I referred to as him screaming and crying. And he was once about to move on level. And he walked off level and he were given on a aircraft – he had simply gotten there – and he flew six hours and he was once proper again.”

“For her to be in Nashville and me to be in California was once excruciating,” City stated. “And having simply landed, I am like, ‘I have gotta get again straight away. Now, you understand?’ The ready round so that you could get a aircraft to get me again as speedy as conceivable was once simply indescribable. So, circle of relatives first in the whole lot.”

Because the identify of his new album suggests, Keith City is used to dwelling existence at complete velocity. However he is came upon that one of the vital greatest rewards can handiest pop out of slowing down.

Smith requested, “So, are you hopeful?”

“I am all the time hopeful,” City responded. “We will be able to be informed such a lot from this second, such a lot. And when this comes once more – and there is not any doubt it’ll in the future – we will be method higher ready for it, and I believe simply have a brand new method of doing issues.  We are all the time gonna play by hook or by crook, a way. We are gonna determine a solution to do it.”

To observe Keith City carry out “Tumbleweed,” from his new album, “The Pace of Now, Phase 1,” click on at the video participant underneath:

Keith City – Tumbleweed (Reputable Visualizer) by way of
KeithUrbanVEVO on

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Tale produced by way of John D’Amelio. Editor: Lauren Barnello. 

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