Evan Paul hosts Taste of Country Nights, On Demand, a weekly country music interview podcast that focuses on the music. Follow wherever podcasts are found, like Apple Podcasts and Spotify and leave a rating and review. ​​​​​​​​​​​This show is part of the Townsquare Media On Demand network. 

Parker McCollum has a lot going on right now. In his personal life, he is getting married later this month. In his professional life, his first two songs — "Pretty Heart," and just this week, "To Be Loved by You" — went No. 1, and he just won the 2022 ACM Award for Best New Male Artist. He is always nonstop going, so to get to chat with him for 30 minutes was really cool.

We had some serious conversations and some good times during our chat. On the serious side, he was telling me how he has an issue internally, that he thinks nothing he does is ever good. As a songwriter, this could really get in the way of his work, but he has learned to overcome it with the help of his team and his support system. We also talked about how he used to rely on substances to write songs. After awhile, he just decided he wanted to be better and he cold-turkey got sober. He said he has done some of his best work sober and is in a great space mentally.

Parker is a Texas boy, so we had to talk about George Strait a little! He was telling me how he got to meet the King — he was opening up for him with Maddie & Tae, and when he got off stage, his label was like "come on, let's go" and they walked him to meet George. I asked him what he called George, and his reply was priceless! You can hear it when you listen to Taste of Country Nights, On Demand Episode 27. It's one of the first things we talk about.

As I said, Parker is marrying his longtime girlfriend Hallie Ray Light this month, and the two are pretty inseparable. A few artists have told us that when they go hunting, they like to go with the guys, or go solo. Parker loves having Hallie with him, although she does something that makes a successful hunt very unlikely ... I'm not going to spoil it for you, but if you want to skip ahead to about the 10-minute mark, you'll hear for yourself.

There is no doubt in my mind that Parker McCollum is a future country music superstar. With his first two songs reaching the top of the charts, it's looking like there isn't much stopping this talented young man from Texas. Check out my entire interview with Parker, it's now available wherever you listen to your podcasts, just search for Taste of Country Nights, On Demand.

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