It’s hard to realize how much you’ll miss something until the moment you don’t have it anymore. That was the case for plenty of artists when live music was put on hold at the onset of the pandemic. Rather than sit around and slouch, though, Matt Chase and Chris Rogers, known collectively as Southerland, turned the band into good, penning their newest single, “Down the Road.”
Following the success of their debut releases “Thing Is” and “Boot Up,” “Down the Road” feels destined to make three’s company, as the duo have unveiled a high-energy, windows-down tune that will surely serve as the soundtrack to summer road trips for years to come.
We chatted with Southerland all about “Down the Road,” the success of their debut releases, new music, hitting the road and more!
Pro Country: Your releases to this point in your career have perfectly blended 90s and contemporary country sounds. Can you talk about the influences you’ve drawn on as a duo that have shaped your sound?
Southerland: From the beginning, we just sat out to make music that we would enjoy listening to. 90s and 2000s country was very influential to us. That’s what we grew up listening to, and that will always have a place in our music.
PC: Your debut single, “Thing Is,” came out of the gate strong and has earned 1.8 million streams. As your introduction to the country world, how encouraging was it to be able to tangibly see the response the song received?
Southerland: It was really encouraging. It was our first step into the world as Southerland, so we really didn’t know what to expect. Thankfully, it was well received, and I think gave people a first look at who we wanted to be and who we are.
PC: Your last single, “Boot Up,” has surpassed two million streams and landed on Spotify curated playlists. After coming out of the gate strong with “Thing Is,” how important was it to keep momentum rolling with your sophomore single and avoid the “sophomore slump”?
Southerland: Momentum is everything in this business. We try to not get caught up in numbers all the time, we just try and make music that we are proud of. We always strive to make our next song better than the first and keep fans and listeners excited for what’s to come.
PC: What do you think it was about “Boot Up” that allowed it to connect with listeners the way it has?
Southerland: It had a little more edge to it. A little more grit. It broke the mold of that typical duo mid-tempo love song. It also was a tip of the hat to the blue collar crowd. The everyday people that don’t always get their moment in the spotlight.
PC: Why did you feel that your newest single, “Down the Road,” was the right follow up single to “Boot Up”?
Southerland: It just felt right. It was easy. It’s just a feel good, roll the windows down, take a drive and take the long way home kind of song.
PC: You co-wrote “Down the Road” with Jim Beavers and Derek George. Can you take us in the room and talk about how the song came together?
Southerland: Well, we wrote this song on Zoom back when everyone was stuck at home and we were missing the road, missing meeting fans, missing our band and playing shows all around the country. As we were writing, we were just talking about the nostalgia of the road and the feeling of being out there and just like that, it all came together.
PC: “Down the Road” sounds destined for both the stage and windows down driving. How cognizant are you of the live setting when creating music in the studio, and how much are you looking forward to bringing “Down the Road” to audiences this summer?
Southerland: That is our main focus. We have always said whatever listeners hear in the music, we want them to see it in the show. That is one of our main priorities when writing music. We want to bring a lot of energy to our live show, just as much as we do in our recordings. We can’t wait for people to hear it and we think it’s the perfect time for us to get music back out there.
PC: What are your plans for the rest of 2022?
Southerland: The road and new music. We had two goals for this year: play more shows than we ever have and release more music than we ever have. That’s the plan.
PC: Is there anything you’d like to add?
Southerland: We would love for y’all to come follow us on social media (@southerlandmusic). Were always posting content about new music, upcoming shows and just give a glimpse into the daily life of an up and comer. Also, be sure to join our VIP text group for exclusive access to new things and be the first to know! Text SOUTHERLAND to 615-675-6253.
*Images by Justin Mayotte*
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