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Brad Paisley is one of Carrie Underwood’s best friends, so it was only a matter of time before the two collaborated on a song. However, the process took longer than both expected. Carrie recently explained just how ‘Remind Me’ came about and why Brad’s ‘Waitin’ on a Woman’ may not be about the person you think.
In Nashville for the Billboard Country Music Summit, Carrie revealed that doing a song together had been on the radar of the two superstars for a while, but she doesn’t like to force things. “We’re not gonna sing ‘Yankee Doodle Dandy’ just because we both know it and we need to sing together. We both wanted to do this.”
Once Brad pushed back the release date of his album, ‘This Is Country Music,’ the two were finally able to set up a time to meet.
“Let me tell you something about Brad Paisley,” says Carrie. “Brad is not on time. You tell him something’s going to happen 30 minutes before so he shows up on time. I’ve learned this from co-hosting with him. He’s a great guy, but he’s on ‘Paisley Time.’ And I always say, ‘Waiting on a woman’? Yeah right!'”
Brad may need reminding about keeping his appointments, but Carrie revealed that no one had to ‘Remind Me’ about when the song was recorded, thanks to her hockey-star hubby and the NHL.
“We recorded it on February 11 because my husband got traded on the 10th, so that’s how I know,” she explains. “[Brad] calls me up February 9 and says, ‘Hey! I have this idea for a song!’ I said, ‘I thought you were supposed to deliver it already.’ He says, ‘No, nope. It wasn’t ready yet and it got pushed back.'”
Brad had an idea, not a complete song, which was about a couple finding their way back to what used to be. He hummed it to Carrie on speakerphone while she was in her hotel room in L.A. Right away, she saw the song’s potential and asked him to send her a work tape so they could figure it out together.
“His son actually had a play date with Sheryl Crow’s son and he asks her — totally puts her on the spot, I’m sure — to sing the female part. I have this work tape demo with Sheryl Crow singing my part. There’s mumbling, a few lines here and there.”
Carrie explained that she saw something in the song and flew back to Nashville to work with Brad.
“They were still changing lines,” Carrie notes. “It was the most unorganized thing I had ever been a part of. I had never done anything like that before. It all worked out so perfectly. I was so happy. I felt like that was given to us. I was so excited about the song once the words became established and I was so happy he didn’t deliver [his album] on time. It kept it in the moment, just doing it off the cuff. It wouldn’t have been the same song had we recorded it and recorded it.”
‘Remind Me’ is rapidly climbing the charts.
Brad Paisley is in the first week of his H20 II: Wetter & Wilder tour, which features plenty of familiar attractions fans enjoyed on his first H20 trek, including the Water World Plaza, a Corvette driving simulator and the now-infamous dunking booth. But while the reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year is looking forward to repeating some of the fun from last year’s tour, he says there will be new attractions as well, both on and off stage.
“It’s a whole new album, which helps,” Brad says (quote via Real Country Online). “We’ve got a lot of new songs to pull off that ought to be great live — things like ‘Workin’ on a Tan’ and the duet with Blake Shelton, ‘Don’t Drink the Water.’ With Blake being out with me, it ought to be fun to play every night and work really well with the theme. Being that it’s a new year and a new album, our whole entire set is different as well as all the acts out on the road.”
The new tour has Blake joining Jerrod Niemann as opening acts, with Sunny Sweeney, Brent Anderson and Edens Edge all performing on smaller stages earlier in the afternoon. The ‘Water’ singer says he relishes the opportunity to give newer acts a larger platform.
“What I did like about last year though was the format which was the three-act opening stage out in the entry way of these places and getting to see three new acts in the middle of the afternoon in the summertime when people are looking for that,” he acknowledges. “They’re looking for a day’s worth of entertainment as opposed to just three hours at the end of the day. They showed up in droves at four in the afternoon for these new acts and to be able to give that gift to another three new acts is really a great and special thing. I remember getting that opportunity with Alan Jackson, so I look forward to seeing that happen again.”
The West Virginia native says he put a great deal of thought into choosing which acts would accompany him on his five-month tour. “You’ve got Blake Shelton who couldn’t be hotter and I’m absolutely thrilled to get to collaborate with him again,” notes the multi-platinum-selling star. “You’ve got Jerrod Niemann who is on a real roll and just had his second hit. He’s on the same record label as me. [He’s] just a great act and I’ve known him a long time. He was out with us for a couple of months at the beginning of the year and he did so well that we just decided to keep him on. Then, on the other stage, you have three acts that most people won’t be all that familiar with yet. I picked them … not based on success record or anything like that … when you put them on that stage, it’s about ‘who do I think deserves to be in front of people with what they’re doing.'”
The husband of actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley and father to two boys may seem to have done it all — including recording the recent No. 1 song, ‘Old Alabama,’ with the legendary group Alabama, which he describes as a dream come true. “I feel like a couple of years ago if somebody had asked, Who do you really want to collaborate with?’ I wouldn’t have necessarily have said Alabama because I wouldn’t have thought that was a possibility,” he acknowledges. “I would have thought, ‘Well, Alabama, they’re taking a break. They’re not touring. They did a farewell tour. They’ll never do something like that. What would that sound like? Me with Alabama? They don’t need me. They’re a band. They have three great singers. How could I possibly come up with some way of collaborating with Alabama that wouldn’t feel forced and weird?’ So that wouldn’t have been on my radar. Now looking at it, I feel like I should have been all along, going, ‘Here’s my goal. I think this will be one of the pinnacles musically that I’ll ever contribute to country music.’ I wouldn’t have ever guessed that.”
Still, there is still one other artist he hopes to work with at some point in his already epic career. “In my mind, I’ve always wanted to play guitar with Eric Clapton,” admits the noted ax man. “I’ve always wanted to do something like that that can step out of country a little more while being myself and being country. A big aspect of this for me is kind of expanding musically while still representing. Maybe that’s it. Something like that.”
Brad’s H20: Wetter & Wilder II tour heads to Indiana, Ohio and Missouri in the next few weeks. He will also perform this Thursday, June 9, for the first night of CMA Music Fest in Nashville. Keep track of his schedule here.
Brad Paisley kicked off his H20 II: Wetter & Wilder World tour in Virginia Beach, Va., Friday night (June 3), and while his dual personality as master prankster hasn’t surfaced as yet, he’ll be ready when the time strikes. The singer is busy looking over his shoulder since he pulled a really stinky practical joke on his tour mate Blake Shelton a few years ago.
Brad recalls a long weekend of dates the two had together when they were both “struggling young artists.” It was the first night, and Brad went over to Blake’s bus to hang out and chat. That’s when he pulled a prank, which unfortunately for Blake, wouldn’t be discovered for days.
“I had one of those stick-up air fresheners, and we stuck it under the table in the front lounge [of Blake’s bus],” Brad tells The Boot. “We replaced the contents with raw chicken. It was not old chicken at that point. It had no odor whatsoever. By Sunday, [laughs] they had found it, because they had to — the bus smelled like someone had died! They said they kept looking under that table, and all they saw was a stick-up air freshener and couldn’t understand what was making that smell, because there’s even an air freshener there. Finally, somebody [discovered it]. That was the last time we played with them … That was only three dates, and we have 30-something this year!”
“You couldn’t get onto the bus without throwing up,” Blake recalls, telling The Boot it was the worst prank ever played on him. “That’s how long it took us to find it.”
The reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year is experiencing a bit of remorse for the stinky chicken. “I feel bad about that now. I kind of regret it,” Brad discloses. “I thought at that point that either one of us would probably not be around in 2011. [laughs] I figured I was safe. One or the other of us is going to fall off the face of the earth and no longer be a threat on the road, and here we go. I regret it just a little bit.”
Once the ‘Honey Bee’ singer stings him, Brad already has an idea of how he will retaliate. “I’m ready,” he says. “You know these one-day deal sites online, like Woot, Groupon and all that. Well, one of them had a great deal on something. I’m not going to tell you what it is, but I’ve already spent a couple hundred bucks. It’s a prank with Blake in mind. I’m preparing.
“We could do what we did where we sit down with artists and say, ‘Look, let’s just take it easy.’ That’s not even a talk we need to have, because it’s going to start somewhere, and it needs to,” the singer adds. “Anybody that comes to see these shows is going to expect a little bit of that from us. I would hope so. I mean, if you’re not, you don’t know what you’re doing or who you’re going to see.”
As far as Blake is concerned, he questions Brad’s creativity in coming up with a brand-new tour name. “What’s wrong with Brad Paisley that he can’t think of a new name for his tour?,” he asks. “Who says H20 tour II? Is he too busy that he can’t sit down for 10 minutes to think of a new name? Because it is a new year and a new tour.”
Brad should probably have someone keep an eye on his back, because Blake has a two-fold reason now for getting long-overdue revenge; he also wants to help his new bride, Miranda Lambert, get back at Brad for what he did to her on tour last year.
“She said, ‘I want you to do something to him to get him back for the stupid crap he did to me out there,'” Blake recalls. “She was playing ‘White Liar’ one night and [Brad] had gotten into the big screen behind and posted during her performance, pictures of me with other girls from the last few years, on the big screen behind her during her show. Afterwards, he goes, ‘Man, I think she got mad about that.’ I said, ‘Well, Miranda’s not the kind of girl that sits around and dreams up pranks. She’ll just wait until you’re not looking, and she’ll kick you straight in the nuts one of these days. That’s what’s funny to her. So, she made me promise that I would come up with something to get him back for doing that to her that night.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Blake continues. “Miranda toured with Brad and the one thing that Miranda and I talk about is what we’re going to do tour wise … so I talked to her about it. I said, ‘Man, I got this offer. What was it like?’ She said, ‘You have to do it. First of all, Brad and his crew, you’ll never feel more comfortable or at home. They’re class acts, and there won’t be any big dogging you out there. He’ll give you everything he’s got when you get on stage. He’ll make it comfortable, and he wants you to be happy out there.'”
Brad’s next performance will be Thursday (June 9) at Nashville’s LP Field during CMA Music Festival. The next stop on his H20 II trek is Saturday (June 11) in Cleveland, Ohio. Check here for a complete list of H20 II tour dates.
Brad Paisley is a busy guy. He’s on the road about 100 days a year entertaining his millions of fans. And with his new album, “This is Country Music,” in stores now, Paisley isn’t showing signs of slowing down anytime soon.
Currently out on tour, Paisley let CNN hop on his tour bus and shared some of his secrets of how to survive life on the road. He says his most essential tool is coffee.
“We like coffee. There’s something about being out here on the road that the hours aren’t anything like what you’re used to when you’re at home.”
But caffeine is not the only fuel Paisley relies on. He is a very big advocate of staying healthy by staying in shape. And he and his guys come prepared for that. He led us into a room full of what he calls “the emergency stuff — dumbbells, adjustable weights and kettle bells.
“I’m telling you that’s important out here because they feed you really well, and then I have to get up in front of thousands of people and pretend I haven’t eaten, you know, a 16-ounce steak,” Paisley says.
But he does take time to relax and says he really enjoys getting to catch up with his favorite TV shows on the road, thanks to having TiVo on his bus. He says that getting to see what happened on “The Office” whenever he wants is a great way to pass the time while traveling by bus.
Paisley also thinks that for anyone who travels all of the time for work, it is important to stop and smell the roses, so to speak.
“If you’re somebody that gets a chance to go somewhere … that has to work somewhere or go to another city, then do your best to see it. Because I just think that’s the best way to have an interesting life,” he says.
“It’s hard to be judgmental once you’ve been around the world … it’s pretty hard to be anything but understanding, and I think it’s good for everybody to get out and see someplace other than where you grew up.”
Paisley also speaks candidly about how the road has taught him to not take his family and loved ones for granted, but rather the time away makes the time at home all the more special.
But if there is any question as to why Paisley chooses this semi-nomadic life — it’s for the fans.
“I look out at so many of the same faces every year as we do these tours that I’m reminded how really, really lucky I am to be in this type of music. It’s crazy how loyal country fans are. I can’t say enough how much that means to me.”