In 2017, Chris Stapleton played a drenched set in the rain at Chicago’s Wrigley Field opening for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers on the classic rock band’s 40th anniversary run. This summer, the country singer-songwriter will connect some dots when he returns to the venue with Mike Campbell and the Heartbreakers guitarist’s new band the Dirty Knobs in tow.
Stapleton sings on the Dirty Knobs’ debut album Wreckless Abandon, out March 20th, and says he’s been writing with Campbell at the guitarist’s Los Angeles home studio.
“He’s probably my favorite guitar player of all time. To sit around with him and write some songs has been cool,” says Stapleton, who has also been recording in Nashville at RCA Studio A with producer Dave Cobb. “We did some last year too,” he says. “I don’t want to make any promises, but there is probably some new music on the way.”
In the meantime, Stapleton, who spoke to Rolling Stone prior to Keith Urban’s All for the Hall benefit concert in Nashville on Monday night, is looking forward to his just announced All-American Road Show Tour and the mega-lineup that is the Wrigley Field August 29th date: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, and the Highwomen are also on the bill. Stapleton says the lineup, one of the most buzzed-about one-offs of the summer, came together when he and Isbell ran into each other backstage at an awards show.
“We wanted to get the Highwomen in there because they hadn’t played many shows,” says Stapleton of the supergroup, which often features Isbell playing guitar for Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, Natalie Hemby, and Isbell’s wife Amanda Shires. “I was talking to Jason in the hallway with Amanda and he said, ‘I’m gonna come out for that.’ We were looking for some other folks [to play], and, well, Jason said he was gonna come anyway, so that’s how that show happened.”
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Stapleton launches the 2020 edition of his All-American Road Show Tour on March 11th in Corpus Christi, Texas.