The Marty Smith Podcast: Ray Fulcher Chats About Luke Combs’ ‘Generational Voice’ and Knowing He Was Special Early On

by Chris Haney

This week we’ve got another great guest within the country music world who joined The Marty Smith Podcast. Singer-songwriter Ray Fulcher sat down to talk about his time in Nashville as a songwriter and his own recent debut album, Spray Painted Line, which just released last week.

Fulcher has worked with some of the largest names in country music over the years. During the podcast, Fulcher opened up about working with his good friend Luke Combs. He knew how special Combs was since the beginning, far before he became one of country music’s biggest stars.

Previous to Combs’ 2017 debut album This One’s for You, he and Fulcher worked together on numerous songs together. At first, they couldn’t gain any traction in Music City with their songs. Country music radio wasn’t interested in what they were creating during the early days of both of their careers. In fact, the pair specifically collaborated on four tracks dating back to 2015 that were ignored by the country music industry.

Yet a couple years later as Combs started to blow up, three out of their four songs on his first album would reach No. 1 on the country charts. Those songs were “When It Rains It Pours,” “Hurricane,” “One Number Away,” and “I Got Away with You.” Further, This One’s for You would climb to No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart for 50 weeks.

The country music industry may not have caught up to Combs’ talent right away. But Combs and Fulcher stayed their course. They believed in their music, and it eventually paid off. However, Fulcher knew that Combs would find success from the first time he ever heard him sing.

Ray Fulcher Shares What Makes Luke Combs So Special on ‘The Marty Smith Podcast’

These days, Luke Combs is a larger-than-life country music star. He can’t seem to miss on any song or album he releases. Yet the fame and fortune that comes along with Combs’ success haven’t gone to his head. He’s one of the more grounded artists out there, which Ray Fulcher confirmed. He’s definitely a breath of fresh air compared to an industry that can produce inflated egos overnight.

“For a guy like Luke, everybody asks me, ‘Is he everything we think he is, like behind the camera?’ I go, ‘No, he’s not. He’s even better, he’s even cooler than you see.’ Cause he’s the most down to Earth human, most loyal human, and one of the most thoughtful humans I’ve ever met.”

Additionally, the two musicians may have struggled for a while to gain recognition for their songs. But Fulcher knew Combs would be huge after just the first time hearing him sing.

“He also has a generational voice,” Fulcher said on The Marty Smith Podcast. “The first time I heard him sing… alright, I always tell people this. There’s two times in my life where I’ve seen something the first time and I go, ‘That’s life-changing, that’s something that I’ve never seen before. They’re built so different that there’s no way they can’t be successful.”

“That is, the first time I saw Matt Stafford throw a football when he was 17 years old as an early enrollee at Georgia. And the first time I heard Luke Combs sing. There’s just some things you ain’t gonna get in the way of. And I think those are two of those things,” he added.

The guys talk to Ray Fulcher about 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.