Thomas Rhett Explains How a Doris Day Classic Made It Onto His New Album

by Taylor Cunningham
(Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images for ACM)

Thomas Rhett is putting a new twist on county music with a throwback to Doris Day.

On Rhett’s new album, Where We Started, the singer blended outside genres into his traditional twang. And he even collaborated with pop songstress Katy Perry. But one of his most charming additions was inspired by Day’s 1954 rendition of If I Give My Heart to You.

In an interview with The Boot, Thomas Rhett explained exactly how the tune found a place on Where We Started.

When the singer and his wife Lauren are cooking together in their Nashville home, they enjoy drinking wine and listening to ’50s music. Rhett said his grandparents “instilled” an appreciation for that era’s greatest singers like Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, and The Drifters.

And when Thomas Rhett and his wife started a new playlist one night, the Doris Day song came on and immediately gave him all the feels. So, he asked his songwriter to help him give the pop standard a contemporary feel.

“I was writing with a guy named Luke Laird and said, “Can you mash this together and make it feel current?” That’s what we wrote over that song,” he said. ” I’m a huge fan of that song because I think it sounds so different than anything else I’ve ever recorded. I don’t know. It makes me happy. Dude, I love that song.”

But that wasn’t the only way that Rhett gave his album an old-school vibe.

Thomas Rhett Took His Doris Day Track to Next Level Old School with a Cassette Release

To further envoke a vintage feel with Where We Started, Thomas Rhett released the album on cassette tape.

While chatting with CMT, the Slow Down Summer singer admitted that the medium holds a special place in his heart because of his childhood memories.

“When I think about a cassette, I think about being young,” he said. “I remember my mom taking me to the store to buy a Faith Hill cassette when I was like, maybe six or seven years old. And with the album being called Where We Started, I don’t know. It’s kind of just a deep dive into looking back at your younger self.”

Because his new release is about self-reflection, Rhett really wanted to make it connect with him in a unique way. And that’s how he came up with the idea to send it out on cassette. And it’s a move that all ’80s and ’90s kids can appreciate.

“I was passed vinyl and 45s but cassettes, when I grew up, were the thing,” he added. “And I still have a bunch of those from being young. And I just thought, that was kind of a really neat way to ring in the album title with something that feels so nostalgic like a cassette.”

Fans can buy the special edition cassette of Where We Started from Rhett’s store.