“I wanted to tell a bunch of different stories on this album, but they all had to be authentic and believable to me,” says Mitchell Tenpenny. “What I was feeling at the time, where I was in my head, what’s going on in the world, it all contributed to the end product. The songs that made it were the ones I was sure that I was passionate about getting on there—what I was proud of, what I really wanted to say.”
On the heels of his RIAA-certified Gold single, “Drunk Me,” comes Tenpenny’s major label debut album, Telling All My Secrets. Revealing a wide range of influences and a level of assurance and confidence that comes from already having years of songwriting and touring behind him, the record marks the arrival of an artist recently singled out by Billboard as a pick to “break out” by the end of 2018. Of course, the magazine’s prediction wasn’t all that bold, since Tenpenny’s self-titled EP has racked up almost 100 million streams, with “Drunk Me” earning more than 77 million on-demand streams and has surpassed 500,000 certifiable units in the U.S. The singer claims that he knew the song was special as soon as he recorded it.
“Everything about it—the production, the hook, the performance—it felt like how I wanted to present myself,” he says. “We dug into that song and made it real cinematic and unusual. On the first playback, it felt like something Whitney Houston might do, and I thought, ‘This is what we need to be doing, this feels right,’ and it became the foundation of the record.” Not that you can ever anticipate the kind of explosive success that “Drunk Me” has had.