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Music / Chris Stapleton

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A Country Music singer who emerged in The New '10s as a popular purveyor of "neo-traditional" country music, Christopher Alvin Stapleton (born April 15, 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky) made his debut at the Turn of the Millennium as a popular songwriter, having penned #1 hits for Josh Turner, Kenny Chesney, Darius Rucker, Thomas Rhett, and Luke Bryan. He then fronted the bluegrass group The Steeldrivers for a short time, then an even shorter gig in the Southern rock band The Jompson Brothers, before making his mark as a solo singer. After a false start with "What Are You Listening To" in 2013, Stapleton recorded Traveller in 2015. While the lead single and title track flopped, he got a sudden boost in popularity with the hits "Nobody to Blame" and "Parachute". A cover of "Tennessee Whiskey" was also immensely popular from the album, becoming his highest-charting entry despite never being shipped as a single — this was due to him performing the song with Justin Timberlake on that year's CMA Awards, helping greatly in boosting his profile.

This was followed in 2017 by a pair of albums: From A Room: Volume 1 and Volume 2. The former includes the singles "Either Way" and his first #1 airplay hit, "Broken Halos".

Stapleton is known for his minimalistic traditional sound, leading to favorable comparisons to the "outlaw country" movement of The '70s, with critics also noting his soulful blues and R&B-styled phrasings.


  • Traveller (2015)
  • From A Room: Volume 1 (2017)
  • From A Room: Volume 2 (2017)
  • Starting Over (2020)
  • Higher (2023)

Tropes present in his work:

  • Declaration of Protection: "Parachute" ("Say the word and I'll be there for you / Baby, I will be your parachute").
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Before releasing any of his own material, Stapleton wrote several songs for other artists, and sang backing vocals on a few of them. His wife, Morgane, co-wrote Carrie Underwood's "Don't Forget to Remember Me" while also singing a few backing vocals here and there.
  • Ironic Echo: In "You Should Probably Leave", the narrator directs the title phrase at his partner during a one-night stand. Come the next day, she wakes up and directs the phrase at him instead.
  • It's All My Fault: "Nobody to Blame":
    I know right where I went wrong
    I know just what got her gone
    Turned my life into this country song
    And I got nobody to blame but me
  • Lyrical Cold Open: "Broken Halos"
  • Record Producer: Dave Cobb, noted for his rootsy minimalism.
  • Step Up to the Microphone: His wife, Morgane, often sings "You Are My Sunshine" in concert.
  • Three Chords and the Truth: Many of his songs are straightforward traditional three-chord country songs. Dave Cobb's minimalist production style helps enhance the style.
  • Wanderlust Song: "Starting Over":
    Well the road rolls out like a welcome mat
    To a better place than the one we're at
    And I ain't got no kinda plan
    But I've had all of this town I can stand
    And I got friends out on the coast
    We can jump in the water and see what floats
    We've been saving for a rainy day
    Let's beat the storm and be on our way