Brantley Gilbert Tells All About ‘Fire & Brimstone,’ New Addition To The Family and 2nd Annual ‘Kick It In The Ship’ Cruise

Photo: Jeff Nelson

Brantley Gilbert has been swirling in success with the release of his 15-track, fifth studio album, Fire & Brimstone, in which he continues to pave his way in country with his arena-ready rock infused sound. Not only has Gilbert welcomed his new album into the world but also a second child, as him and his wife Amber have welcomed a baby girl named Braylen Hendrix on September 9th, giving his 2-year-old boy, Barrett Hardy-Clay, a little sister.

Coming up in just under 4-weeks Gilbert will be embarking on his second annual ‘Kick It In The Ship’ cruise put on by Sixthman, as after the successful of year one of the cruise, they had to bring it back for an even bigger second year with artists like Chase Rice, LANCO, Diamond Rio, Tyler Farr, Colt Ford, Tyler Rich, Danielle Bradbery, SixForty1, Tyler Booth and so many more.

Gilbert will also be embarking on his extensive 34-city ‘Fire’t Up’ tour through early next year which makes stops throughout the United States and Canada, bringing along special guests Dylan Scott and Chase Rice on select dates. Make sure you get out and see one of his showstopping performances on the tour, click HERE to see if he is making a stop nearest you!

We had the chance to sit down and talk to Gilbert about all of the aforementioned topics including 2nd annual ‘Kick It In The Ship’ cruise, New album ‘Fire & Brimstone,’ New addition to his family and more, which you can read about below.

You’re currently out conquering the road on your ‘Not Like Us’ tour, some would call you a road warrior as you are on the road 85% of the year and you have your headlining ‘Fire’t Up’ Tour coming up in support of your latest album, Fire & Brimstone, what can fans expect from that forthcoming tour?
BG: The fans can expect a party. It’s going to be an awesome time and we’ve put a lot of thought into the production and changed things up in the setlist. It’s going to be a really wild, really rowdy, really good time.

Coming up in November, you will be headed out on your 2nd annual ‘Kick It In The Ship’ Cruise traveling from Miami to Cozumel, Mexico on a 4-day cruise. What are you most looking forward to onboard the cruise and what can fans expect onboard?

BG: You know the cruise is just a big music festival on the water, on a big boat and man, there’s always somebody to see… it’s like there’s always somebody on stage. This year I’m excited to go check out some of those shows and see what some of these artists are bringing to the table.

Fans onboard can expect some awesome shows, some good times. Man, there’s just nonstop something going on and a lot of the fans actually had a say in some of the artists that are performing on the cruise this year, so they’ll be able to check them out. We have an awesome group of folks coming out to play and just can’t wait to get out there on the water.

There are a lot of unique activities on your Cruise like Flip Cup tournaments, bowling and blackjack with yourself and more, How did you go about picking these unique experience for the cruise and which one are you most looking forward to?
BG: Well, I’m looking forward to playing a little blackjack. I think it’s just all about finding some things that we enjoy doing that we can share time with folks and really just hang out a little bit.

Could you give us your top 3 favorite memories from your first annual ‘Kick It In The Ship’ cruise?
BG: I can tell you that one of my top memories from the last cruise is Colt Ford was my roommate. He keeps you laughing, man. I imagine that’ll be the case this year. Two is just the shows. Not just the main stage but being able to go into some of the different theatres and all the different stages on the boat and seeing all the artists perform was really a highlight. And three I would probably say the belly flop contest. There were some pretty interesting things that went on there.

If you had to make a cruise survival kit for this ‘Kick It In The Ship’ Cruise, What would be your top 5 essentials to bring?
BG: I’d probably say like sunscreen, a bunch of water… I’m not a drinker, but I would say for most of the folks out there, I’d probably bring me some drinking money. I can’t say what the fourth one is. And just a lot of awesome people to play shows and hang out with all the folks that support us and care about us and spend their hard-earned money to be out there with us.

Your new album, Fire & Brimstone, is out now. What can you tell us about the recording, production and writing process for this album and what inspired the album title? What one song do you feel best represents this new album?
BG: Well, I’ll say the title track “Fire & Brimstone” best represents the album. This album, like the rest of ‘em, is a chapter of my life, but we did take some steps back and were a little more reminiscent I’ll say on this record. So, it gives you a little bit of the journey and a little bit of the love story between my wife [Amber] and I. A little bit of my spiritual journey and a little bit of the boy becomes a man journey and becoming a father.

The writing process was unbelievable. Man, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to write with the best writers in Nashville. Anytime you get an opportunity to get in the room with one of these guys or girls is just amazing. So, yeah we did a little bit of everything on this record from writing a couple by myself to writing on guitars and for some of ‘em writing the tracks. It was just an awesome creative experience all the way around. I’m stoked about what people are going to hear.

Pick up Gilbert’s new album ‘Fire & Brimstone’ HERE

Can you tell us about your two songs “Bad Boy” and “Never Gonna Be Alone” and the meaning behind those songs?
BG: “Bad Boy” is pretty much a word-for-word, play-by-play of part of my wife and I’s story. Kind of how my mother-in-law was not a fan in the beginning, at all. But these days, you know how the times have changed, we have an amazing relationship and it’s kind of just a little bit of that story.

“Never Gonna Be Alone” is kind of just a message to my wife and kids really. I think anybody that spends a little bit of time on the road can relate to just wanting them to have something to know that I miss ‘em and I’m always thinking about ‘em, and if they ever need me I will be there in the snap of a finger. It’s a song just letting my wife and my kids know that they are always on my mind and that wherever they are is where I want to be.

On the new record, your song “Welcome To Hazeville” features Colt Ford who also happens to be onboard your ‘Kick It In The Ship’ cruise. Can fans expect the first live performance of this song with Colt on the cruise? What inspired this collaboration?
BG: I think it’s safe to say that the fans can expect the first live performance of “Hazeville” with Colt and I on the cruise. What inspired this collaboration is Colt and I have not done anything together since “Dirt Road Anthem.” We’d written some songs and done some things like that but as far as putting a song out together we hadn’t done it in quite a while. This one just seemed like a perfect song for him and he knocked it out of the park. 

You have so many great things going on right now in your life and career with your new album that just came out on October 4th, Your massive headlining ‘Fire’t Up’ Tour, The cruise and more recently the birth of your beautiful new baby girl, Braylen Hendrix. Congratulations to you and your wife Amber. How do you manage to balance fatherhood with your music career?
BG: Balancing fatherhood with a music career… I think it’s all just a learning experience at this point. We’re still trying to figure that out, but I can tell you every second that I get at home with Amber and Barrett and Bray I just try to be present and just show them as much love as I possibly can. I think about ‘em and miss ‘em like crazy when I’m gone.

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