Five Questions With… Chris Labelle
The former River Town Saints frontman is readying the release of his debut solo single. Here he reflects upon that track and an upcoming EP, life post-Saints, and a deep love for his wife and Nashville tacos.
By Jason Schneider
As the lead singer of Ottawa-based country group River Town Saints, former Canadian Idol contestant Chris Labelle helped bring the group to national prominence with their 2017 self-titled album that spawned four hit singles, including the Top 10 Country smash Bonfire. Now making music on his own, Labelle’s debut solo single Say Yeah is making similar waves at radio and will be officially released on August 9 via Curve Music.
It’s the first taste of the work Labelle has been doing in Nashville over the past eight months, with an eye toward a full album release in the coming months. As a self-described “guy’s guy,” Labelle balances his equal love of music and sports with a fun-loving personality that has endeared him to fans across Canada. Follow him on Twitter at @Labellecountry.
What makes your new music different from your past work?
I love that it’s my story now. I get to write whatever I want that showcases who I am as an artist. Many people know me as a high-energy person, but there is also a serious side to my upcoming EP as well.
What made Say Yeah the right choice for your debut single?
It felt right because it’s got a summer anthem feel to it. To me, it’s super-catchy and will stick in your head after one listen.
You've been writing in Nashville for the past several months. What are your favourite things to do there when you're not working?
Tacos, tacos, and more tacos! There’s a place called Mas Tacos Por Favor, and it’s my favourite place in Nashville. If you don’t find me there, or in a writing session, I’ll be shooting guns on my buddy’s farm.
What's been the biggest change in your life over the past year?
Definitely it’s been leaving River Town Saints, but I’m happy we ended on good terms and they’re doing well. I’m just looking forward to the challenges ahead and making great music.
What song in your catalogue means the most to you and why?
I’ve got a song called Fight Like A Girl. I didn’t write it, but a good friend of mine showed it to me and said, “It’s all yours.” It has an amazing message, with the hook being, “I’d be the strongest man in the world if I can fight like a girl.” I always think of my wife when I sing it; she’s my rock and the only reason I’m able to continue to do music. She holds down the fort when I’m away and takes care of everything.
Management: Brian Hetherman / Cerberus Management