Today’s Feature – Decemeber 3-4: Chuck Wicks

December 5, 2008 at 11:59 am (Today's Feature)

wicksfeat

You look at a guy like Chuck Wicks, and may think to yourself, “Damn. That guy was born to sing a song under a spotlight. He’s got it all! It musta been easy!” If this is you, then you’re going to be surprised by his story. The opening sounds kind of nice – Wicks began honing his craft in Nashville by spending years writing and playing alongside Music Row writers such as Monty Powell, George Teren, Rivers Rutherford, Neil Thrasher and Wendell Mobley, seven days a week. Sounds pretty fancy, right?

While this sounds like a bells and whistles start to a successful career, Wicks found himself working with these songwriters at night as well… just in a slightly different format. He says, “I parked cars seven days a week at Fleming’s Steak House. I was writing during the day and working at night. Some of those songwriters that I was writing with, I would actually park their car at night when they’d go out to dinner.”

Humble beginnings have led to huge things today, as Wicks releases his RCA Records debut titled “Starting Now.” You may have already heard his first single off of it, the beautifully written “Stealing Cinderella.” As you might expect, all of those songwriters on Music Row rubbed off on this fresh country artist; Wicks demonstrates some attention grabbing talent on this debut, from his thoughtful song lyrics to the melodies behind them. It’s the kind of music people of all ages can appreciate, and that’s likely the reason he’s been opening for superstar Brad Paisley on tour. Check out Wicks schedule, and look into “Starting Now.” You’ll be glad you did. There’s a lot more to learn in the XXQ’s, so dive in below.

XXQs: Chuck Wicks

PensEyeView.com (Richie): Hey Chuck, thanks for taking time out with me today. Where did I catch you?

Chuck Wicks (CW): I’m on tour right now getting ready for the show… Trying to get all situated.

Richie: How is life on the road for you, speaking of being on the road?

CW: It’s fun. Looking back you know, towards the end of the year, being on road for so many months with Brad Paisley, it has become more home than home is. It’s one of those things where I grew up listening to Brad and there is nothing better than getting off stage and having him pat you on the back, saying ‘Good job’.

Richie: Your hit song “Stealing Cinderella” has really taken off. What is the story behind that song? Is there really a Cinderella?

CW: Well, I went to college in Florida and I started dating a girl who actually played Cinderella at an amusement park. So that’s where the song all started. You know since then, five years later, I eventually made the song to what it is today. That’s what I like to do when I write a song is relating it to something that I know. I like to write about things that you can relate to and things that have really happened. When you have to make stuff up, that is when it gets bad. That’s why I like country music so much.

Richie: From the first time you stepped on stage to where you are today, how has your stage presence and performance changed?

CW: Well, I mean playing with Brad is just amazing. I mean I am now playing at arenas. I go out now and get the chance to play in front of 15,000 people. Now you know, I’ve just become a better performer. It’s just a learning process and trying to figure things out.

Richie: What can people expect from a live Chuck Wicks show?

CW:  I think people will feel like they are a part of the show. I like tell people why I wrote the song… that feeling. That’s what I try to bring to every show, is creating a setting where whether it’s a loud rock song or Stealing Cinderella, I want to make people feel like they are a part of the music.

Richie: What can fans expect from your latest album, “Starting Now”?

CW: Every song on there I’ve written except one, so you can get a good feeling of who I am as a person. Each song comes from the right places and what I’ve experienced. When you sit down and actually speak those words and sing the lyrics it’s just…(laughs) it’s one of those things I’m just really proud of man.

Richie: How have all your friends reacted to your success?

CW: Well, I’m getting ready for a trip back home to play, since all this started. I’m playing on the 25th of January and I’m really excited. It’s a bit of a homecoming for me and I don’t know… It’s great to see everyone and have them come out. I’m really looking forward to it.

Richie: What’s one thing we’d be surprised to hear about you?

CW: About me?

Richie: Yeah. You know, what’s like the one thing most fans don’t know.

CW: You know… I think it’s that I’m just such a normal guy. I mean I worry about the same things and stuff. I was getting ready for the CMAs and I remember looking at Juilan (Huff) and saying, ‘Do I look ok? Does this look right?’ (laughs). You know, it’s just like normal things, you know. I mean I grew up in Smyrna, Delaware on a potato farm. I played baseball, chased girls, got C’s in school (laughs). I was never this prodigy that studied music their whole life. I went to college, played baseball there and dreamed of being a baseball player – you know all the things you think about as a kid. It is really just such a normal life.  I mean, I get to go on stage in front of 15,000 people with Brad Paisley and play music. I’m just like everyone else and I get to do what I love to do.

Richie:  You mentioned Julian Huff (From ABC’s Dancing With The Stars) and everyone knows that you are now a couple in the public eye. What do you like to do together for fun when you get to relax?

CW: We are such the normal couple. I mean we like to do the same things – sit around the house, watch movies and eat popcorn.  We talk about what everyone else talks about. We listen to music together and started writing music together. We just like to chill out. We got a dog and love her and it’s just great being together.

Richie: I would imagine dating a professional dancer like Julian would be quite intimidating if you are not a good dancer. Are you a good dancer?

CW: Oh, well… (laughs).

Richie: I mean I would imagine there is a lot of pressure there! (laughs)

CW: No pressure really. You know, I go to watch her show and I go out on the dance floor during rehearsals and just act like a fool (laughs).

Richie:  Has there been a favorite city for you to play so far?

CW: You know, this tour, I’m seeing all the big cities for the first time. So for now, I’m just taking it all in. Every time you get to see all these different things is fun. I love traveling. I love every thing about it.

Richie: So, what’s next for you?

CW: Well, still touring under this record. Started writing some more songs. Just trying to be consistent and keep playing great music.

Richie: Well thank you for the time and tell Brad we say hi.

CW: Thank you. Take care.

For more information on Chuck check out: www.chuckwicks.com

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