Thomas Rhett Opens Up About Giving His Dad a Shout Out in 17th No. 1 Song

by Jacklyn Krol

Thomas Rhett just achieved his seventeenth No. 1 hit with “What’s Your Country Song?”.

The Inspiration Behind the Hit

“What’s Your Country Song?” takes listeners back to their favorite country songs. The tune evokes a feeling of nostalgia and reliving your favorite memories that involve a special country song.

Thomas Rhett spoke about the creative process behind the song. “As we started to kinda craft this song, we had the chorus first, and then we were trying to figure out where to take the verses.  And we kinda thought, what if we could tell a story in the verses through using some of our favorite song titles,” he shared. “Whether it’s from the ’80s or from the ’90s or now. ”

How exactly did his father get a cameo in the song? “I remember the first line that I spit out was, ‘Are you heartbroken because you know that ain’t your truck in her drive,’ literally as a joke, just ’cause dad was sittin’ there,” he admitted. “And as we started to write the song, it felt like it just fit.  It was pretty funny, but I’m glad dad got a shout-out in that song.”

Additionally, “What’s Your Country Song?” was TR’s 11th consecutive No. 1 single on the Mediabase chart.

His Father’s Influence

Long before Thomas Rhett became a country staple, his father Rhett Akins was making hits. He spoke about knowing that he was destined to become an artist on the Apple Country’s “Today’s Country Radio” podcast.

“That’s all I wanted to do was sit in the living room and have Dad play every country song on the radio so that me and him can sing them,” he shared. “It’s been pretty wild. It was kind of destined, maybe not for me to do exactly what I’m doing now, but I think I would have always done something in music because it was just so part of my childhood and so part of my dad’s history.”

Thomas Rhett’s Go-To Country Song

Thomas Rhett’s country song is Eric Church’s “These Boots.” He admires how Church is able to use stories that can be relatable to any listener. Rhett spoke about the impact that Church’s music had on him personally and through his career.  

“Cause I think going through middle school and high school, he was my idol in country music,” Rhett told Big Machine Label Group. “And I just remember listening to ‘These Boots’ over and over and over and over again. I just loved how simple it was, how strip[ped] down it was and the story that it told.”