HomeEntertainmentDierks Bentley Opens Up About New Album: ‘Making Music That Feels Good to Me’

Dierks Bentley Opens Up About New Album: ‘Making Music That Feels Good to Me’

by Craig Garrett
Dierks Bentley
(Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC)

Country music star Dierks Bentley believes in a very specific sort of religion when it comes to his songwriting. “I always tell my kids that I follow the religion of ‘I don’t know,'” he recently told People. “And that’s OK.” Undoubtedly, the multi-platinum singer/songwriter has made a name for himself by relinquishing control of his creative process and allowing music to lead the way.

Try Paramount+ FREE for a week. Subscribe here to watch your favorite shows.

“I don’t know what the sound of a particular album is ever going to be,” Bentley insisted. “I don’t feel like I need to try to put it in words. That’s really where anything good comes from.”

In 2020, the Arizona native was faced with a difficult conundrum: his touring career had been sidelined as a result of the pandemic, yet he found himself at an important crossroads in both his personal and professional life.

“I was living in Colorado and all I knew for sure is that I just wanted to stay there,” explained Bentley about recording his latest album Gravel & Gold. “I remember the song ‘Gone’ got pitched to me and my wife [Cassidy] heard it, and she really loved it. So I cut it, but I still was at this point that I wasn’t really thinking about music at all.”

Why Dierks Bentley decided to lean into Nashville

However, he couldn’t help but consider prolonging his stay in Colorado. “My wife and some of my kids wanted to come back and, unfortunately, we live in a democracy in my house,” Bentley joked. “And what I discovered when I came back was that I had really missed Nashville.”

According to Bentley, the relocation made it possible for him to reconnect with Nashville and its stories – such as those behind popular tracks like “Somewhere on a Beach” and “5-1-5-0” – that put him in the spotlight of country music fame. This newfound appreciation was not just limited to regaining familiarity with his city but also enabled Bentley to revive his creative voice through songwriting. The narrative of one of those stories is woven into the lyrics of “Gold.”

“‘Gold’ is really a song about how your frame of mind can change your perspective on something,” Bentley explained. “Gravel can be gold if you look at it from the right perspective. That’s really where my headspace was.”

By exploring his comfort zone on Gravel & Gold, Bentley delved into familiar sounds from bluegrass-inspired groundings in “High Note” to a more classic country sensibility in “Old Pickup.”

“Everyone sings about them, but they all have brand new trucks,” Bentley quipped. “I do have a pickup truck with a bench seat. I have my Rand McNally map in the back that my dad and I used when we drove across the country the first time.”