Tyler Farr isn’t name-dropping when he says he chats with Blake Shelton on the phone sometimes.
It’s just that when he needs advice, he has Shelton’s personal number.
Of course, the country singer may be closer with Jason Aldean, who is on Farr’s next album and will also be in his wedding when the country singer gets married in a few months.
“That’s what’s cool about country music,” Farr says in advance of a concert Tuesday, July 26, at Table Mountain Casino. The singer, whose debut, “Redneck Crazy,” was No. 2 on Billboard’s country chart when it was released in 2014, is part of a current crop of contemporary country musicians that includes the likes of Shelton, Aldean and Lee Brice.
But he is not friends with every country musician out there.
After all, it’s an increasingly crowded field. At 32 years old, Farr is no senior citizen, but he’s been in the business for 10 years and has seen firsthand the increase in the number of musicians on the scene. The key to staying ahead is to simply keep working hard, he says.
Farr was recently forced to take time off to recover from throat surgery that removed a polyp from his vocal cords. (Adele had the same surgery in 2011.) He was unable to talk, much less sing, for four weeks. But as soon as he was healed, he was back on the road and in the studio. In fact, he ends a five-day run of shows next Sunday night. He plans to be home on Monday morning and in the studio that afternoon.
“I outwork the competition,” he says.
Right now, that includes looking for songs for a new album. He’s taking pitch meetings, where publishing companies try to sell him on their songs, and making sure his friends – such as Aldean – are on the lookout.
“They know me. They know what I’m into,” Farr says.
At the same time, he continues writing music of his own. Some he’ll pitch to other artists. He helped write “Jesus and Jones” for Trace Adkins.
Others, he keeps for himself because, at this point in his career, he knows the right song when he hears it. That’s how it was with “A Guy Walks Into a Bar,” which hit No. 1 on the country airplay charts in 2014. The first time he heard the song, Farr knew he had to record it.
“I heard it and said, ‘That’s going to be my next single.’ ”
Don’t be a jerk. You never know who you’ll be working for.
Tyler Farr’s advice to upcoming country music artists
- 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 26
- Table Mountain Casino, 8184 Table Mountain Road, Friant
- 559-822-7777, www.tmcasino.com