Just this year alone, Thomas Fountain has offered music that covers both ends of his musical spectrum, and he’s proving to be damn good at both. With the release of his good-timing single “It Don’t Matter” in April, Fountain delivered a singalong party tune and an equally fun music video to match. However, with his second release of the year, his newest single, “Window Pane,” Fountain has slowed things down and delivered a good ol’ sad country song that we’re certainly clingers to.
Serving as a co-writer on “Window Pane,” Fountain’s new storytelling single comes full of steel guitar and lonesome fiddle, and most recently, landed him on Spotify’s Fresh Finds: Country curated playlist and sees he and his song amongst some of the brightest rising stars in the genre.
We caught up with Fountain to talk all about “Window Pane,” his recording perspective, how his time off during the pandemic impacted him and more!
Pro Country: Your last single, “It Don’t Matter,” has quickly become one of your most-streamed songs on Spotify. How encouraging was the response to “It Don’t Matter” and what was it like to tangibly see the support the song received?
Thomas Fountain: “It Don’t Matter” was a fun, upbeat single and something new for me to release. The response has been better than expected. I think it just kind of gets stuck in your head and can be applied to so many aspects of life. It was a blast to record and had some of my closest friends on the recording. The video was absolutely hilarious as well.
PC: Why did you feel that your new single, “Window Pane,” was the right follow up to “It Don’t Matter”?
TF: With “It Don’t Matter” being such a carefree, fun song, I thought it would be cool to hit fans with a deep, dark, good ole country sad song to follow up. “Window Pane” is probably my favorite song I’ve recorded in a while, and it was the last song I recorded in the studio. So to me, it was a good way to close a door and get ready to open a new one towards new music.
PC: Can you talk about the inspiration behind “Window Pane”?
TF: My good friend Kyle Daniel and I wrote the song. I have always loved country songs or songs in general, about one object. Songs like that are harder to write and expand your creativity as a writer. I had this idea for a song about a window pane on the way to Nashville one morning at about 9am. I was headed that day to write with Kyle. My thought was a guy going back to his old home place he was raised to bury his mother that just passed away. I had the imagery of him standing in the rain, looking through cracked glass and seeing all the bad memories flooding by in the house through that window pane. The song is eerie with a twist at the end. I also had a big hand in the production of this song, which is rewarding for me on a personal level.
PC: “Window Pane” has landed a spot on Spotify’s “Fresh Finds: Country” curated playlist. What is it like for you to see your name and song amongst some of the biggest up-and-coming names in the genre?
TF: Man, it was awesome and totally unexpected. Although I’m proud of the tune, I wouldn’t really consider it “radio friendly” or mainstream, so when I saw the placement on Fresh Finds, I was shocked, but also encouraged. It kind of showed me that someone out there is still appreciating art.
PC: You mentioned plans for new music earlier. What information can you give about new music and what can listeners expect to hear?
TF: Well, I will start the process of writing for a new album soon. So until I start that process, I don’t really know how or where it will go. Being an independent artist, we have the liberty to put whatever songs on a record we choose. Whatever mood or state I’m in during that time usually reflects my writing. I will say I’ve been wanting to do a full blown honky tonk record for a few years. Hopefully, I can stay in that mood [laughs].
PC: You’ve mentioned in previous interviews that you have been a writer on many of your newest songs, but still have been open to recording outside songs. How important is it for you to strike a balance between offering your own perspective with songs you’ve written and having a “best song wins” mentality and being open to other perspectives?
TF: I’ve learned that the hard way to say the least. When I started out writing, I was just so happy to have written a song that you think it’s just so good. Now looking back, from the outside looking in, I think those early songs definitely weren’t my best work. You want to put your best songs forward, but if they aren’t the best songs at that time, you have to be okay with that. There are some great writers out there, and I’ve learned to be open to what they have to offer. I’m not just a writer, but also a performer and artist, so you have to think what will relate to your fan base the best. Sometimes it’s what somebody else has to say instead of you.
PC: Of the things you can control, what are your plans for the rest of 2021 and going into 2022?
TF: The time off with the pandemic really hurt me more than I thought. I can’t speak for other writers and artists, but for me, it put me in a huge funk. It was easy to not see a justification for continuing to write consistently. It was very easy to say “well we can’t go perform so what’s the point in still grinding every day.” Needless to say, I tried and tried to keep contact and engage with my fan base. So to answer your question, simply continuing to do what I’ve always done is something I can control. I can still write songs I’m proud of and need to, because words shouldn’t be trapped inside a writer. A lot of times, it’s a release for a writer and need to get out so they can move on to the next chapter.
PC: Is there anything you’d like to add?
TF: Just want to thank Pro Country for the support. Also, I’d love to tell fans to please support us independent guys. Some of us are one step away from big things and some want to stay the independent route and maintain those freedoms. Either way, we can’t continue without the support of fans coming to shows, buying merch, streaming/downloading songs, etc. We don’t have the backing from big industry people yet, so it’s up to the fans to take us to the next level. Mine have been around and consistent for the last five years or so. Without them, I wouldn’t even be where I am now.
*”Window Pane” is featured on The Best of Pro Country playlist!*