While Luke Combs burst onto the scene as a fully fledged artist, fans have still had the privilege of watching him transcend his status as a regional cult favourite in North Carolina to become one of country music’s biggest superstars, all in the matter of a few years. It’s appropriate, then, that Combs would title his third studio album Growin’ Up, as the LP is a portrait of an artist reaching new heights in his career. “It's time to get it together at this point,” Combs tells Apple Music. “It's like you're growing up into this. You're going from one thing to the next. I think, sonically, this album is a lot of that for me.” The album is peppered with hits, like the long-running country No. 1 “Doin’ This” and the contemplative “Tomorrow Me.” There are also tracks that dig a little deeper into Combs’ personal life, like standout “Middle of Somewhere,” a loving tribute to the small town outside of Nashville where Combs lives with his family. Below, Combs shares insight into several key tracks on Growin’ Up.
“The Kind of Love We Make”
“My guitar tech, Jamie Davis, he's a super talented singer and super great guitar player. That was a song that Jamie had started with Dan and Reid Isbell and I guess they really loved the melody. Dan and Reid came out to Montana. I was out there. I had rented a house out there for a couple weeks to write, and they brought that thing in there and I was like, ‘Man, I love this.’ We finished that thing and it was awesome. I love that song. It's just different, melody-wise, than anything I have.”
“Outrunnin’ Your Memory” (feat. Miranda Lambert)
“Miranda and I had never met more than really in passing at that time. And so I said, ‘You know, eventually, we got to get down to like what are we going to write?’ And there was no plan of, like, ‘Let's write a duet.’ There was no that. It was almost like we were both just staff writers and going, ‘Let's write a good song that somebody will like.’ That was the idea. It was never like, ‘Let's write a song for me or let's write a song for you.’ It was none of that. It was just like, ‘Let's write the best song in the room and that'll be a win.’”
“Middle of Somewhere”
“Where that song came from was this feeling of being connected to this little town that we live in and the people that live there and how great they've been to me and my wife and the respect that they have for our privacy. They have become protective even, in a way, of us a little bit. They want to help us out and they don't ask for anything in return. Nobody's like, ‘Dude, let's be buddies, and give me tickets.’ They think it's awesome that we are there, and I feel super grateful to be there and to feel like a part of that community, to feel like people are proud that we live there, because they are so proud of that place that they feel like, ‘This guy would move here, of all places? He could move anywhere.’”