Thursday, June 30, 2016

Phillip Phillips Talks Springsteen, Fans and New Music


Photo by Nick Walker
With the Olympics approaching, it’s likely any memories of 2012’s summer games are dancing through your head to Phillip Phillips' bright anthem “Home.” The five-time platinum debut single from the now-25-year-old American Idol winner became the unofficial theme song for the games when it was played during key Olympic moments such as the "Fab Five" Women’s Gymnastics Team’s gold medal wins. But Phillips is far more than “Home,” he’s charted three other songs on the Billboard Hot 100, released two albums and has shared the stage with legends such as Bruce Springsteen. The down-to-earth Albany, Georgia, resident checks in with us before his July 6 show at the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park with singer-songwriter Matt Nathanson and “Say Something” hitmakers A Great Big World. 

ON POST-IDOL LIFE: I got older, got a little uglier [laughs], got married. Yeah, so a lot has happened, another couple albums have come out. It seems like a short amount of time but also it's been a long time too. It's a lot touring for it, you know, you get paid to keep doing this, something I love. As far as making the songs, it's been good. The songs I've written have this very classic sound to it; it's timeless. Not many people would try to make these type of songs. My big goal is writing these songs. I think these songs are definitely my best lyrically and musically. They're pretty special.

ON FAVORITE CAREER MOMENT: I think the biggest moment was probably when I toured with John Mayer and Bruce Springsteen, in South America, Rock in Rio. It was just unbelievable to see 90,000 people looking out there onstage. It was me, doing like an hour set or something, and then Mayer came on after me, and Bruce closed the night out. That was definitely one of the best nights of my life.

ON THIS TOUR: [Matt Nathanson] is an awesome dude. He's hilarious. He's just making me laugh. The tour's been amazing. I like to change the set up every night. I try to keep it different for each show and special for that crowd. I'll just be in town, walking around, seeing what the vibe is going to be like, trying to pick the songs I want to play. I've been starting to introduce some covers. You never know what you're going to get.

ON COOLEST FAN MOMENT ON TOUR: It was like past midnight, and they were waiting up on the pavement. They didn't even say hello or anything, they just ran to me and just hugged me. It was very, very sweet.

ON THIRD ALBUM SET TO BE OUT LATER THIS YEAR: I've worked with some awesome people, just really good writers, and they can help push me. Some of it's about imagination, it's about realizing and being able to live life. Definitely some of it's about using my voice, and what I see in a lot of songs. The music, and writing songs, all of it's amazing, some of my best material.

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