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INTERVIEW: Florida Country Artist Christon Birge

Hi Christon, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Great! Super busy in the best way possible with the launch of our new single.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Sunscreen On You”?

It’s a fun summer song that makes you want to sing along and takes you straight to the beach – no matter where you are. We don’t always have the time or the luxury to get to the beach but we can all crank up the radio or put in our headphones and listen to a song that takes us there and puts us in that mindset.

I wrote this song with my good buddy Shaun Streeter. We both coincidentally had partially-written songs about the beach and the smell of sunscreen on a girl. Shaun and I both lost our jobs as a result of Hurricane Michael. This was a Category 5 hurricane the Northwest Florida region had never seen before. The impact of the storm on the Florida Panhandle was devastating but a silver lining for us was using that time to make music. We finished writing and got straight into the studio to record and plan for the music video.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

“Sunscreen on You” is inspired by a lifetime of living by the beaches of Northwest Florida and always loving the tropical smell of sunscreen. The lyrics tell the story about the ultimate day at the beach – “kickin back, chillin back, hittin our groove,” “got that laid back beach attitude,” and not having “one dang thing to worry about.”

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

Hot – haha! Nothing like 3 full days of filming on the beach during a Florida summer.

Our friends and videographers Danny Paul,  Amanda Paul and Katie Reynolds at ADK Productions made it all come together. They are each incredibly talented and this music video is a testament to their creativity and passion for filmmaking.

Danny Paul and I are childhood friends from the same small town of Vernon, Florida, just thirty minutes north of Panama City Beach. We both grew up watching music videos on channels like MTV, VH1, GAC and CMT, and now we’re living out our dreams of creating music videos inspired by the ones we used to watch.

How was the recording and writing process?

When we first started out writing the song it sounding more like a traditional country track. Soon it became this beachy anthem delivering sounds of classic and country rock.

I was given advice one time, ‘Don’t be scared to let a song grow.’ Part of that growth came about while working with producer/engineer Tim Smith at The Soundscape Studio in Detroit. Before we knew it, we had a country rock song on our hands, y’all!

What role does Florida play in your music?

We live in Northwest Florida. Us locals call it LA which stands for Lower Alabama because it doesn’t get much more country than right here. Country living definitely inspires the music I write. We are blessed with the best of both worlds in this neck of the woods because we’re home to the world’s most beautiful beaches, and they happen to be hugged up next to iconic Florida wilderness and pine trees for miles.

Do you tend to take a different approach when you are collaborating with someone else rather than working on your own?

Yes and no.

Open roads inspire most of my song ideas. Whether I’m on my motorcycle or driving my truck, long rides will typically get my creative juices flowing. When collaborating with someone else, I tend to bring those song ideas or unfinished lyrics to the table as a starting point.

Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how’s that coming along?

New material is most definitely on the horizon. In the meantime, we are incredibly grateful for the positive response to “Sunscreen on You” we’ve received from fans, friends and country radio, and we are looking forward to playing the song live at the shows we have lined up across the Southeast in the next couple months.

Any tentative release date or title in mind?

Not just yet, but we look forward to announcing soon!

Any plans to hit the road?

Absolutely! My band is family and we can’t wait to hit the ground running in 2020. Not only are they talented musicians, they’re good people – and that’s the key ingredient to success. We’re a 5 piece band including Wesley Theus (drummer/expert on all things Halloween and horror), Tommy Farmer (lead guitarist/small engine mechanic and master beard grower),  P.J. Carter (bassist/small engine mechanic/tattoo collector and vape enthusiast) and Katie Spillman (vocals/tambourine/lover of rhinestones and chatting with small animals over coffee). Stay tuned at christonbirge.com for news and show announcements.

What else is happening next in Christon Birge’s world?

We’re excited to be named a finalist in the Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam Southern Original show slated for Labor Day weekend in Panama City Beach. It is one of the largest music festivals in the southeast with three full days of music, headlined this year by Tim McGraw, Jason Aldean and Kid Rock. We’re honored to be named among such talented artists and play for country music fans from near and far. Country music fans are the most loyal fans out there!

We’re happy that everyone is enjoying “Sunscreen on You” as much as we enjoyed creating it. The ultimate theme that sums up writing, playing and making the music video for this song is GOOD VIBES ONLY and man are we feeling the positive vibes in return! The song’s traction on country radio stations across the nation has been incredible and we look forward to the opportunities that lie ahead of us as a result of the song’s success.

“Sunscreen on You” is available now on all major music streaming and downloading platforms here: https://christonbirge.hearnow.com

The official “Sunscreen on You” music video may be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzclUea-8fA&feature=youtu.be&fbclid=IwAR1ezbD7-pCG2rH1P2o5XGxRwOk7g2zCu2Su0BhN17Zik0HMohZwglzZDPc

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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