Ohio singer-songwriter Rayne Johnson has been gaining traction with his latest single Front Seat.
The follow-up to 2018’s Laid Back, Front Seat officially impacted radio back in January and it’s been garnering him plenty of attention. In 2019 he was included in CMT’s Artist Discovery program and he’s performed alongside the likes of Brad Paisley, Hunter Hayes, Jimmie Allen, Mark Chesnutt, Runaway June and Walker Hayes.
I caught up with Rayne to find out more about his music, discuss his plans for the future and talk about how he’s going to stay sane while we’re all on a COVID-19 lockdown.
Hi Rayne. How are you and where does this Q&A find you?
All is well here, just hunkered down in Ohio honoring the “Stay At Home” ordinance!
Your latest single Front Seat has been picking up traction at radio and on streaming services. What’s the song all about and where did the inspiration for it come from?
Front Seat is really somewhat of a metaphor. We all long to be a priority in our relationship and what better way to say it than “You belong in the front seat”
The inspiration for the song was from a moment that a very close writer friend of mine expressed. He was traveling and literally saw a car with two guys in the front and a girl in the back seat. There are plenty of explanations for why she was, but it just brought a thought to his mind that she belongs in the front seat… out of that experience came Front Seat in a writing session.
Moving forward what’s your plan for your music? Are you working on an EP or an album, or are you looking to release more singles for the time being?
I’m really excited about the next chapter… my EP is in the final stages of being finished. I’m really fired up about it and so ready to share it with everyone!
When did you realise that you wanted to pursue a career in music?
I’ve been singing as long as I can remember, but really started pursuing my musical career in my early 20s. It’s been a long process but wouldn’t change it for the world.
What have been your biggest challenges so far in your career?
Just the let downs. It’s been a long road and a lot of nos. But each no drives you to grow, learn and improve! At least that’s how I’ve chosen to view them and here we are staring down the barrel of a great single! It’s exciting to look back.
Social media allows you to connect with fans across the world. What’s your relationship with social media like?
I love it! It’s incredible how easy we can stay in touch with one another “artist to fan”! Don’t get me wrong social media can be stressful but overall it’s an amazing way to get to know the people that support you! On a personal and professional level!
Which artists have had the biggest impact on you and why?
I grew up listening to classic country through my dad and more of a soulful side from my mom. Merle Haggard is my favorite classic country voice. But I love my R&B lol. Guys like Boys II Men, and Brian McKnight probably shaped my vocal style the most! Fast forward to really finding myself was when I was exposed to Rascal Flatts and the newer style of country. Now I love so many country artists from Urban, Aldean, to FGL, and now the modern guys…the list could literally go on for a loooong time!
If you have to describe your sound in one sentence, what would you say?
Soulful modern country!
Obviously at the moment we can’t travel anywhere due to the COVID-19 pandemic but do you have any plans to get over to the UK in the future?
I’ve always wanted to travel to the UK but never had the chance! It would be amazing to get to for the first time through my music! So yes, I plan on it someday!
With everyone stuck at home for the foreseeable, what tips can you give to help people get through the next few weeks/months?
My family and I are taking this situation very seriously but I have tried to look at the situation that it’s put us “my fam” in as a positive. We are enjoying and appreciating one another so much. We have been forced to reinvent how we spend our time together and what we do as a family and it has been so fun. I challenge everyone not to be consumed by the fear and unknown of this situation. Take care of what you can control and be positive and love one another. Time is something we can never get back or get more of so make the best of this situation!
Rayne Johnson’s single Front Seat is available to stream and download now. Watch the music video below: