Chris Stapleton, who is fresh off a wave of critical and commercial success from his debut solo album Traveller, has released his second album, From A Room: Volume 1.
The anticipated follow-up to the Grammy Award-winning Traveller, From A Room: Volume 1 , was released on Friday, May 5.
Here’s what you need to know about the album:
1. Recording of the Album Took Place in RCA Studio A
Stapleton’s new album gets its name from the legendary studio it was recorded in. Musicians who have recorded in the studio before include Waylon Jennings, Tony Bennett, Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton, according to Rolling Stone.
RCA Studio A was established in Nashville in 1965 by legendary producers Chet Atkins and Owen Bradley, according to Reverb. According to Rolling Stone, despite its rich history, the building was nearly demolished in 2014, until it was bought by Curb Records founder Mike Curb and philanthropists Chuck Elcan and Aubrey Preston.
According to The Tennessean, the studio is set to get a $500,000 renovation that will take the facility back to what it looked like in its heyday. Part of the plans include a replica of the iconic RCA Victor sign, new flooring, and chairs that will be the same RCA red. They also plan to renovate Atkins’ old office and give it new furniture, according to The Tennessean.
2. Stapleton Once Again Teamed With Producer Dave Cobb
Cobb has quickly become a legend in his own right. Over the past several years, he has produced albums for Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson, and Jason Isbell; a trio GQ said was shaking up the Nashville establishment. Cobb won Grammy Awards for Stapleton’s Traveller and Isbell’s Something More Than Free. Simpson’s Metamodern Sounds In Country Music was nominated for Best Americana Album in 2014.
Other artists Cobb has produced include Shooter Jennings, Oak Ridge Boys, Anderson East, Whiskey Myers, and Jamey Johnson. His album with Johnson, The Guitar Song, earned him a Grammy nomination for Best Country Album.
Cobb is also a guitar player and has musician credits on Traveller. He sometimes performs live with Stapleton and Stapleton’s wife, Morgane Stapleton. Cobb recently recorded the Stapleton’s version of the popular song, “You Are My Sunshine”, for the 2016 compilation album Southern Family.
3. The Album Features a Willie Nelson Cover
The only song not penned by Stapleton on From A Room: Volume 1 , is “Last Thing I Needed, First Thing This Morning”. Originally written by Gary Nunn and Donna Sioux Farrar, the song was recorded by Willie Nelson for his 1992 album Always on My Mind.
Long time Willie Nelson harmonica player Mickey Raphael, who was also featured on Traveller, plays harmonica on the track. Raphael also played on Nelson’s 1982 version.
Listen to Stapleton’s version of the song below.
Stapleton and Nelson performed together with Kris Kristofferson at “Imagine: John Lennon 75th Birthday Concert” in 2015. The trio performed The Beatles’ classic, “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away”. Raphael also played harmonica for the performance. Nelson and Stapleton also performed together at a tribute to Waylon Jennings in July of 2015.
Watch Stapleton perform with Nelson and Kristofferson below.
4. Stapleton Shared Three Songs Prior to the Release Date
In addition to the Willie Nelson cover, two other songs were released prior to the album’s release date.
The first was “Broken Halos”. “Broken Halos” is one of four songs on the album that Stapleton wrote with former bandmate Mike Henderson. Stapleton played and sang on The Steeldrivers’ first two albums with Henderson.
Listen to “Broken Halos” below.
The final song released before the album dropped was “Second One To Know”. Stapleton first premiered the song live at the ACM Awards in April. It is another of the tracks co-written by Henderson. Listen to “Second One To Know” below.
5. ‘From A Room: Volume 1’ Is Made of Songs Written Before ‘Traveller’
Even though, From A Room: Volume 1 was recorded after Stapleton’ debut Traveller, it is entirely made up of songs written before it. Stapleton first got his start as a songwriter and has an arsenal of over 1,000 songs, according to The New York Times.
From A Room: Volume 1‘s release date is exactly two years after the release of Traveller. Traveller was released on May 5, 2015 and has since been certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.