Chris Stapleton Profiled on ’60 Minutes’ on Sunday Night: ‘You Have to Take It to the People’

by Courtney Blackann
(Photo by Erika Goldring/Getty Images for CMT)

If there’s anyone who’s an expert in songwriting, it’s country music icon Chris Stapleton. He’s written nearly 200 songs, six of which went number one. But when he was recently asked in an interview about knowing when a song is a hit, the Grammy award winner said it’s up to the people to decide that.

Speaking in an interview with 60 Minutes, ahead of a full profile on Sunday night, Stapleton was asked about his many hits. With so many successful songs, the singer must have some formula, right? Well actually, he says, you never really know when your music is going to rise to the top of the charts.

“I don’t think I ever know that. The win is finishing the song. There are a lot of songwriters who will claim ‘Yeah, I knew when we wrote this that it was a six-week number one and I was gonna get a big, giant check in the mail.’ I really just think those guys are full of sh**. I don’t think anyone knows that. Like, you can’t possibly know how everybody’s gonna feel about a song. That’s impossible to know. I don’t trust computer research or surveys or anything like that. You have to take it to the people. I trust people. And I trust people have taste,” Stapleton says.

This honest perspective is perhaps what makes Stapleton’s music so well-received. Because he’s not writing it for a paycheck (though we’re sure that helps,) he’s writing it for himself as well as to connect with others.

And since the early 2000s, the country star has been writing and co-writing music for a number of popular artists. He worked on Kenny Chesney’s “Never Wanted Nothing More” and Luke Bryan’s “Drink A Beer” among many other talented artist’s hits.

Chris Stapleton’s Rise to Fame

However, after going solo and releasing “Traveller” in 2015, Stapleton really shot to fame. Additionally, the songwriter has five Grammys to go along with his numerous AMA and CMA awards. But Stapleton remains humble and true to his roots. Although he was raised in Kentucky, Stapleton moved to Nashville. But it wasn’t initially to pursue music. He attended Vanderbilt College for a bit before dropping out to work full time on his passion: music and songwriting.

And we’re glad he did because Stapleton’s latest album “Starting Over” is simply phenomenal. One of his most recent successes was winning his 5th Male Vocalist of the Year at the 2021 CMA awards.

“I want to say thank you to everybody that listened to the record, everybody that listens to music — country music fans,” he said during his Album of the Year acceptance speech. “It’s always an honor to receive the album award. We believe in albums, and we like what that is.”