Every now and then, we’re blessed with the opportunity to catch a new artist at show in Nashville that unexpectedly captures our attention and makes us move in for a closer listen. That’s exactly what happen when Dustin Spears filled in for Jesse Keith Whitley one night and we happened to be in attendance. With his new single “Tennessee and You” just about to release, we had the incredible opportunity to catch up with Dustin and chat with him about the single, the project he’s working on that the song is a part of, his friendship with Jesse Keith Whitley, why his song “Slow Walk With Jesus” means so much to him, the upcoming Spring Fling Fest he’s part of, and much much more!

(Interview by: Jeffrey Kurtis

TCM "Tennessee and You" Single Review

TCM Show Review


1. You recently announced that you will be releasing new single “Tennessee and You” on January 22, 2022. Tell us a little bit about the song and what we can expect from it. 

Oh man! “Tennessee and You” is something dear to my heart that I wrote a year ago and just one day showed to my band and management and we cut it. It’s raw, from the heart guitar tones, and everything that brings the classic rock /country style I grew up with in the early 90’s. I wrote everything from the lyrics to instruments.

2. In what ways do you feel “Tennessee and You” will show your fans the tremendous growth you’ve had as a songwriter and as an artist the most, that maybe they haven’t seen from you and your previous releases?

It’s real and from the heart. I’ve experienced it. I wrote it where it would be catchy enough to where you could sing along every time you hear it, but where people can also relate to it.

3. Of the new crop of songs that you’ve been playing out at shows and recording in the studio, what was it about “Tennessee and You” that made you feel that it was the best first representative of your new music?

Its style has been my voice and range. If I had one song to sing in front of anyone, then this would be the one where people could see me as me and as an artist!

4. Speaking of recording in the studio, the song is part of a bigger project. What can you tell us about that forthcoming project?

It’s straight up country with soul and rock voice and true feelings from the heart. I didn’t feel like it was something you’ve already heard and are used to.

5. Staying on the subject of new songs, when we caught your recent show at Scoreboard you played some of your new material. Is there a song besides “Tennessee and You” that you’re most excited for your fans to hear?

Oh boy!!!! Where do I start with this one?  Man, “Whiskey Ain’t Working!!!! Yea, that one is a good one. We have a lot on the table and in the works with some features with big names of country and aka country rap. But “Whiskey Ain’t Working” is me bringing back country with my soulful voice. 

6. The show that we caught you at, you were a last-minute fill in that night for Jesse Keith Whitley at one of the ‘Nashville’s Most Wanted’ shows. You’ve played a couple of those shows, but how did that one in particular come about for you, and what do you enjoy most about being part of those and the atmosphere out in Music Valley?

Well thank you to my good friend Jesse, who has always looked out for me and my interest! So, it’s kinda crazy that me and my management team were just sitting around, and Jesse called my team to get me that spot. We thought he was joking, cause if you know Jesse, he a jokester sometimes! But he was as serious as all get out. But the sincerity of him asking me to play, that was amazing to me.

The atmosphere - from my management (Big J) to Cody Purvis, they always make everything feel like a part of the family.

7. Tell us a little bit about your friendship with Jesse, and what you’ve learned about navigating the music industry through that friendship?

My manager Big J and I went to Ollies in Hendersonville. J introduced me to him, and since then we’ve been friends to where I’ve gotten opportunities to open for him.

And wow! That’s a hard one!!!! But Jesse has always told me one thing …. be consistent!! It has come a long way since then, to working with other named artists, opening up for The Lacs , Whey Jennings, Creed Fisher, Shawty V, and more…But most important is that I’ve met some amazing people; like the owners and family of Dirt Rock Empire, who have really been a blessing.

8. One of your back catalog songs you played that night at Scoreboard that really caught our attention was “Slow Walk With Jesus.” What does that song mean to you personally?

I’m glad you brought this up! My life isn’t rainbows and sunshine. I have not always been the guy I am today, as most of us humans have been. Before I was saved, I partied like a rock star. But with my heart being in music, I have seen Nashville do a lot of crazy things to where most don’t feel welcomed or a part of it because we speak the truth.

Summed up, the song is about this: we all have danced with the devil from whatever road you’re on… from drug addiction to alcohol, and more. But when you become saved you become new like a slow walk with Jesus.

9. An upcoming live show that you’ve teased on your social media lately is the 2022 Spring Fling Festival. What more can you tell us about the festival? What are you most looking forward to with it?

It’s my manager Big J’s birthday bash, but this year we’re doing more branding and doing it the Dustin Spears Festival, hence it being named “Dustin Spears Presents the 2022 Spring Fling Fest.” It will take place every year. This year it’s in Murfreesboro, TN at Dewaynes Bar n Grill, and it’s also a benefit for Emilee’s race for a cure.

10. What is the best piece of advice that you can offer an aspiring songwriter/artist just trying to break into the music business?

Well…. To be honest, the way I see it you should keep God First, be humble, and be consistent. it’s a slow process and when you stay positive, people feed off that and you bring light to others, and it brings you more joy.


Learn more about Dustin Spears by visiting his official Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/dustinspearsmusic/




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