Brantley Gilbert was back home in Georgia when we spoke on a Monday afternoon. The singer-songwriter had some time off from tour but joked his wife Amber still had him “working.”
Their love story is one fans are familiar with; she’s the subject of many of his songs. The good, the bad, the ugly—Gilbert has always given away the details in his music. His fourth record released in January, The Devil Don’t Sleep, is no different with 16 songs he wrote or co-wrote. “She gets every flaw, my rebel heart, every tattoo, every scar. She’s in love with the outlaw in me,” he sings on “Outlaw in Me.”
Gilbert is just as open with others aspects of his life, including being a recovering addict. On the album’s slow tempo title track, he sings about temptations, effectively bringing his struggles to the forefront: “Battle scars on my heart, Lord knows this war ain’t over, no, it’s just getting started, just when you thought you had him beat.” And there’s rarely any hesitation to let fans in on his dark moments.
“It makes things a little easier for me, putting things out in the open,” he said. “You may not like it, but you’ll at least know who I am.”
Gilbert will bring his candidness to Jones Beach Theater when the Devil Don’t Sleep Tour comes to Long Island on July 27. Describing each show as a high energy roller coaster ride, the 32-year-old has been on the road since February.
“As far as this record goes it’s been really, really positive. Everything we’ve put in the setlist, they are already singing along to,” said Gilbert pointing out that the album’s first single “The Weekend” gets the crowd most riled up.
The new songs came about three years after Gilbert released his platinum-certified third album Just as I Am. It features his hit “Bottoms Up” which went to No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs. The singer made it clear he’s in no rush to make a new record. “I’m writing chapters in my life, I need to live them to be able to write about them. That’s why we take a little bit longer,” he explained.
But his next chapter is sure to be far different than any previous one. Gilbert and his wife, whom he wed in 2015, are expecting their first child together this fall.
“I don’t really know what to think about the future right now. I’m kind of wrapped up in [having a baby] and just looking forward to that,” he said. “I don’t think I can prepare for it at all, but trying to get everything settled.”