Wallen entered the music scene in 2014 with an appearance on The Voice, joining Adam Levine’s team before being eliminated in the playoff round. From there, the Sneedville, Tennessee native moved to Nashville, where he signed with Big Loud Records and began writing and recording.
In 2016, he released his first single, “The Way I Talk,” and an EP, marking his studio album debut with If I Know Me. Speaking to PopCulture.com, Wallen shared that he wanted the album’s sound to stay true to who he is as a person, noting that he’s at a good place in his life and the songs on the project reflect that feeling.
“I’m really happy with where I am and who I am as a person right now,” he explained. “Just having a lot of fun in life. So I wanted my songs to reflect that. There’s not a whole lot of serious or sad stuff going on on the album, just because that’s where I’m at right now. So with my music, I hope that’s what I always do — wherever I’m at in life, I’m probably gonna stay pretty close to that with my music as well.”
While Wallen is billed as a country artist, he acknowledged that his album spans several genres stylistically.
“There’s a little bit of everything involved in my album,” he said. “It’s pretty diverse. There’s a couple of songs on there that have honky-tonk leaning sounds. There’s a couple of songs that do lean more pop. And there’s just a couple of straight-up country jammers on there.”
“I like to think there’s a little bit of everything for everybody because that’s the way I am as well,” he added. “I like every kind of music, so I kind of wanted to incorporate it all.”
Wallen added that he appreciates that his music can go hand in hand with other genres in listeners’ minds, citing fans who have told him that they are listening to both his album as well as rapper Post Malone’s.
If I Know Me was preceded by the single “Up Down,” which Wallen recorded with Florida Georgia Line.
“It’s still going,” the 24-year-old noted of the track. “Especially in the past month or so, I’ve just noticed a whole different vibe and energy that I’ve been experiencing out on the road. And the fans, seeing that they’re really buying into what we’re doing.
Photo Credit: Big Loud Records