Ever since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and shutdown, Eric Church has pulled no punches about what his goal is: To get back onstage, whatever it takes.
“I just want to play shows,” the singer and reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year tells Billboard. “Politics’ job is to divide — that’s how you win elections. The things that unite us are music and sports. The times when, whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican or whatever, you throw your arm around the person next to you.”
When he had to halt live show plans in March of 2020, Eric met with industry experts and epidemiologists to try to figure out what he could do to get back to what he loves doing most. He didn’t think he’d be able to resuming touring until 2023, but then the vaccine roll-out happened, faster than anyone expected.
Now, the singer’s on a mission to get fans to sign up for the shot.
“I view it as a God-sent miracle,” he says. “It became very clear to me that the only way to really get back to normal is through vaccinations. You’ve got to get needles in arms.”
Eric — who signed up for his own shot as soon as he became eligible, using his birth name, Kenneth, so no one would let him skip the line — knows that vaccinations are a politicized issue.
“If you believe you shouldn’t [get the shot], I don’t have a problem with it. I’m a liberty guy, too. I get it,” he reasons. “But I view this a little differently than most other things. We’ve never encountered this.”
Eric is also looking ahead to the April release of his triple album, Heart & Soul. His current single, “Hell of a View,” is now a top-15 hit.
By Carena Liptak
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