Country singer Pat Green focusing on what's next, including a show at the rodeo in Sikeston, Mo.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Now in his third decade playing music, Pat Green writes the songs he wants to play.

Green spent almost 10 years with corporate labels, playing the songs they wanted him to record. The country singer and songwriter has more than 20 years playing and eight records behind him but has left the big label and is looking to the future.

"I've been doing some awesome writing, just awesome," Green said with a laugh. "Honestly, it's just a much more art-driven focus on this go. I spent a lot of years making corporate music and climbing up that ladder. Like Darrell Royal says, 'You gotta dance with the one that brung you,' and I'm tired of dancing with the other girl."

Green will play the 59th Sikeston Jaycee Bootheel Rodeo at 7 p.m. Aug. 12.

Trying to become a superstar has taken Green away from the roots of why he started playing. He said that if he was as successful as The Rolling Stones, he would enjoy it. Right now Green said the most fun he's had was when he was doing what felt good. He said he battled with trying to be the "cool, singer-songwriter guy inside a corporate world."

"I don't think that's unique to me," Green said. "Everybody who achieves any level of success as a singer-songwriter and gets a record deal has to tow that line."

Green recently signed a deal with Sugar Hill/Vanguard Records. The label boasts country legends George Jones and Merle Haggard, among many new, talented artists.

"We've got two projects coming out on their label in the next two years," Green said. "So we're really excited about those."

Ten years ago, Green put out "Songs We Wish We'd Written" and has been recording a new album to mark its anniversary.

"It's a covers album with just me and my friends crooning, if you will," Green said. "I have Ed Roland from Collective Soul, Jack Ingram, Walt Wilkins, and the greatest guitar player breathing oxygen, Monty Montgomery, came in and did a song with me."

Green said they have one more recording session to do and then the album will be finished, with an estimated release this October.

But Green has not quit writing his own music. He'll follow this anniversary edition cover CD with a new album released somewhere in the neighborhood of October 2012. Green last released an album with new, original material in 2009, titled "What I'm for."

Green said Sugar Hill is a great fit for him, and allows him to pursue the music that he wants to write and perform.

"Everybody wants to get as big as they can, and those who are artsy irritate the labels and don't get any support and disappear, and the ones that cater to the label get a few years of that, and if they get big, they get big. If they don't they do what I do and sign with Sugar Hill and go make really great records for the rest of their lives."

Green said he enjoys stepping out of the studio to perform. Sikeston is not his first rodeo.

"I do as many as come by," he said. "Rodeos are easy to say yes to. The crowd is already ready to go; they've had a show already watching people risk their lives in person. That in itself is a great opening act!"

Fans and those new to Green's music can expect an entertaining show.

"You get the kitchen sink, that's for sure," Green joked. His band features two guitars, bass, keyboards and drums.

"I always try to put on the concert that I'd want to see," Green said. "To that end, I just try to make sure that people know I'm really sweating up there," he said. "Bring your party hat, and make sure it's tied on tight."

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