The Marty Smith Podcast: Larry Fleet Explains How His Mindset on Songwriting Changed and His Music Became More Authentic

by Chris Haney
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Country singer-songwriter Larry Fleet joined The Marty Smith Podcast earlier this week to talk about his life and career in country music. After some ups and downs early on in Music City, Fleet has been riding a wave of success in the last couple of years.

Last year, an old friend of his, country star Morgan Wallen, invited Fleet to be an opener on tour with him. The exposure on one of the industry’s biggest tours served him well. In fact, Fleet is heading out on his first headlining tour this September. So things are going well for Fleet. However, things really started to change for the musician after he quit making music for country radio and started making more authentic music that he related to.

“To where I’m at now, I kinda learned to be just as honest as I could when I write songs and when I sing things. If I’m honest about it, I’m gonna believe it more when I’m singing it. And then it’s gonna come across like that to other people. They’re gonna believe what I’m singing about,” Larry Fleet said on The Marty Smith Podcast.

Earlier in his career, Fleet attempted to write songs that he thought would be successful on the radio. He was chasing radio hits instead of being true to himself and his own music.

“A while back, I used to try to write songs for other people for whatever I thought the radio wanted. But I kinda just quit doing that,” Fleet shared about changing his songwriting mindset. “I was tired of doing it and I just wanted to write something good, what I would listen to anyways. And so I kinda focused in on that and tried to be real, real honest. When I wrote ‘Working Man’ and ‘Where I Find God’ and stuff like that, I lived that stuff. And I figured somebody else does too. So they’ll get it, you know?”

Larry Fleet Says He Wanted to Be ‘Honest’ With His Music

Host Marty Smith dug a little deeper and got Larry Fleet to open up more on the topic. Smith knows several songwriters in Nashville who have faced similar “conundrums” as he said.

“I want to write what’s on the radio so that I can get a cut. Or so that somebody will maybe put me on the radio. But that is not who I am in my soul. Is that when it all changed?” Smith asked Fleet about his songwriting.

“That’s exactly when it changed,” Fleet answered on The Marty Smith Podcast. “I wrote these songs and was doin’ my thing and trying to write whatever I thought somebody else wanted. Which usually was, nothing against what’s on the radio, it’s just a lot of times it’s the same thing just kinda repeated. And I don’t necessarily relate to everything.”

“So I kinda wanted to write something different than I was listening to [on the radio]. And that’s when it changed,” he continued. “I don’t know, I just wanted to be honest. I want to listen to my own music. You know like I would want to listen to if I didn’t write the song, that’s what I would want to hear. So that’s what I kinda focused on … That’s kinda the style I write. Just being honest and finding a good hook. And it’s worked out, it’s working pretty good right now.”

The guys talk to Larry Fleet about that and much more on the newest episode of The Marty Smith Podcast. Make sure to check out their entire conversation below, or listen to the full interview on Spotify, Apple, or wherever else you listen to your favorite podcasts.

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