Interview with Johnny Dailey

Written by Divine Magazine

His cousin’s truck was the place Johnny Dailey first discovered his love of Country music. From the early days of listening to songs in that pickup to coming of age and receiving his first acoustic guitar as a gift from his dad, his destiny was all but set in stone.

Following high school, the Trussville, AL, native moved to Charleston, SC, where he honed his performance chops playing original songs up and down the city’s infamous King Street. Nashville quickly took notice, leading the country singer-songwriter, his wife Michelle and their two sons Cooper and Masey to Music City.

“I grew up loving country music,” says Johnny, who signed his first major publishing deal in 2019. “I’ve always had the desire to tell my story through song and have it connect with people in some way. Songs have always been a source of comfort for me and I’ve always wanted to sing songs that provide that comfort for other people. It’s a good feeling when you know someone else has been in your shoes.”

Photo-Credit: Kirsten Balani

Have you always been interested in music? Was there a particular song/performance that made you say “Woah! I want to do that!”?

I’ve always had a big interest in listening to music, but I didn’t always have an interest in playing music. I started playing guitar when I was in my early teens but didn’t think about moving to Nashville until after high school.

How would you describe the music that you typically create?

I would say it revolves a lot around how and where I grew up. Small town life and storytelling. 

What was your creative process like for your most recent release “Got Married”?

I sat down with Dan Couch and Matt Bubel and told them my story about meeting my wife and our journey to Nashville. He said “hey we should write that…” and spit out that main line in Got Married. It was a great day and we got a really special song. 

This song is very much rooted in family and love, would you say that those two things are your biggest inspirations for music?

Yes, definitely top of my list for sure. Both those things are really important to me and I want them to shine through in my music!

Throughout your music career have you learned any tips for dealing with writer’s block?

I just try to sit down and write no matter if I have a great idea or not. Waiting on inspiration never works for me, I just have to grab a guitar and hash out whatever I’m thinking on that morning. Even if I don’t get a complete song, it usually leads to an idea.

If we were to look at the artists you are listening to, who would be on your playlist?

Right now, it’s Cody Johnson, Eric Church, Chris Knight, James Taylor, Tom T Hall, Guy Clark…the list is long. 

What are your plans for any future releases?

Excited about 2023. We’ve got some great plans for new music next year!

Rapid Fire Questions: Holiday Edition

Favorite Christmas movie?

Christmas Vacation!

Favorite Christmas memory growing up?

Christmas Eve was always a good time and memorable. That’s when my whole family would get together for dinner and hang out. A few of those family members aren’t alive anymore, so the older I get the better those memories are. 

Favorite winter time activity?

Making a fire and sitting by it!

Favorite holiday tradition with friends or family?

Taking the fam to get a Christmas tree.

Favorite holiday song?

“Tennessee Christmas” by Alabama

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