Chris Stapleton didn’t arrive with “Tennessee Whiskey,” or anything on his debut album Traveller for that matter. In 2013, he released the overlooked single “What Are You Listening To?” — a more radio-ready ballad than the rough and raw outlaw-country fare for which he’s become known.
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A few nights ago @morganwallen challenged me to the #DeepCutsChallenge. I decided to do “What’re You Listening To” by @chrisstapleton. This may not technically be a deep cut but it’s a song that didn’t get as much credit as I think it deserved. Chris, I’m sorry I messed up the bridge, don’t hate me. Hope y’all enjoy and I want to challenge @vincegillofficial to lay one down.
Luke Combs clearly is hip to his Stapleton history: the country superstar covered “What Are You Listening To?” in a new Instagram video, part of the trending #DeepCutsChallenge, in which artists ask their peers to cover a forgotten or unreleased song. In this case, it was Morgan Wallen who challenged Combs.
“This may not technically be a deep cut but it’s a song that didn’t get as much credit as I think it deserved. Chris, I’m sorry I messed up the bridge, don’t hate me,” Combs wrote on Instagram, before addressing the camera.
“I used to play this song in college a bunch. It’s always been one of my favorite of his,” he said, seated on the same bar stool from which he performed a livestream concert last week. Combs embraces the soulfulness of the Stapleton cut, wrapping his voice around the aching mid-tempo tune’s many questions, “Is it a love song about someone new? What are you listening to?”
In the spirit of the #DeepCuts Challenge, Combs also issues his own request, calling on Vince Gill to record the next video. “I want to challenge Vince Gill just ’cause I want to hear Vince sing something.”