Hunter Thomas Mounce has come a long way since his debut EP, Can’t Get Enough, in 2016. The now five-year Nashville native has a full-length album and several singles under his belt, but in January of 2021, he viewed the upcoming year as pivotal in his career. He answered that bell with a string of singles and a newfound mental approach to his music. That work has resulted in what we feel is the best music he’s released to date.
The newest fruits of Mounce’s labor comes in the form of his first all-acoustic single, “Mossy Oak Break-Up,” a humorous tale of a man facing the wrath of an unhinged ex who has been hunting him down. The song serves as a fun closer to Mounce’s year as he prepares to potentially make a big splash in 2022.
We caught up with Mounce to chat all about “Mossy Oak Break-Up,” as well as his takeaways from 2021, his big future plans and more!
Pro Country: After releasing a string of singles earlier in the year, you’re closing 2021 with the release of your new single, “Mossy Oak Break-Up.” How important was it for you to close the year on a high note with a new single release?
Hunter Thomas Mounce: Man, honestly it all kind of fell into place. I was given the opportunity to be on local news Channel 4 “Today in Nashville,” and they wanted the performance to coincide with a single release. The performance was scheduled for the middle of November, which just happened to be deer season, and I knew that I had the song appropriate for that moment in time! It was cool to get to close out a great year with one more song people can enjoy before the bigger plans that I have for 2022 come to fruition.
PC: You wrote “Mossy Oak Break-Up with Nick DeLeo, who also co-wrote your last single, “One Good Reason.” Can you take us in the room and talk about the inspiration behind the song and the chemistry you feel with Nick in writing rooms?
HTM: Nick has become my favorite person to write with. I know that no idea is too “out of the box” to approach him with. The song was inspired by a situation I found myself in. I had just broken up with my girlfriend, and all of a sudden, I had an abstract thought. I had always wanted to hunt with her dad and brother, but I never got the opportunity. Then somehow I made the connection between my favorite camouflage, Mossy Oak Break-Up, and what I was going through: a “Mossy Oak Break-Up!” When I approached Nick with the idea, he embraced it and we decided it would be more fun, different and interesting to create a FICTIONAL story about a guy who really messes up, and therefore his unhinged girlfriend decides to hunt him down.
PC: “Mossy Oak Break-Up” is an all-acoustic song, the first song of that nature you have released. Can you talk about the decision to record the song in that way and what went into the decision to record the song that way?
HTM: Honestly, I was pressed for time trying to coordinate the release of a single with the news show appearance and I knew I didn’t have studio time until mid-December. So, I called up my friend Tony Sanders and asked if he would be willing to take on the acoustic project. It also cannot be understated how good the acoustic guitar sounds because of my friend Kyle Austin. I am very grateful they agreed to do this song with me, and I couldn’t be more proud of how it turned out. P.S. there may or may not be a fully produced version of the song coming in the future!
PC: “Mossy Oak Break-Up” showcases your vocal chops more than probably any song you have released so far. How much do you enjoy the challenge of putting having “nothing to hide behind,” if you will, by matching your voice with just acoustic guitars?
HTM: I really appreciate you saying that this song showcases my vocal chops. 2021 was a year that I decided to put my ego aside and start taking professional vocal lessons. It’s been fun and challenging to work on vocal scales and techniques day in and day out. For me, this song is the manifestation of me deciding to take responsibility for my vocals. I have a long way to go, but I do feel I have improved immensely.
PC: When we talked earlier in the year, you mentioned that 2021 began a new musical chapter for you. With four single releases under your belt, how do you look back at the beginning of this new chapter? What did you learn about yourself as an artist this year?
HTM: I think I will look back at this chapter as a pivotal moment when I chose to face my fears. In order to have success, I’m going to have to take 100% responsibility and cut the excuses. I’m never going to get to where I want to get if I don’t face my fears and constantly challenge myself to grow. For me, that’s what this year has been about. And it’s funny how much easier it is to enjoy yourself when you realize that it is not at all about what other people are doing, but simply what you are doing. I’m learning how to stop comparing myself to others and how to work more efficiently.
PC: Of the things you can control, what are your plans for 2022?
HTM: I really want to release another full record. I learned so much from the first album I released, mainly what not to do. If I can get all the pieces created and in order for a release like that, it will happen this year. If not, it will just take a little longer.
PC: Is there anything you’d like to add?
HTM: I want to thank all of my fans and sites like Pro Country for being patient with me. I realize I am playing a longer game than most artists, which means there are longer spells of inactivity. But just know I am always working whether you know it or not!
*”Mossy Oak Break-Up” is featured on The Best of Pro Country playlist!*