- Hi Matt, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country musician?
I grew up in Southern California with my sister and parents in Tustin. I never thought I would be a country music singer growing up, playing guitar and singing was always a hobby. I wanted to play professional baseball haha.
- What made you want a career in country music?
After baseball didn’t materialize I worked a few odd jobs after college and started playing local gigs around Orange County. After about a year of that I decided to make the love to Nashville and pursue a career in music. Moved to Nashville in 2014 and haven’t looked back.
- What is the background story behind your brand new single “Stayed Alive in ’45?
The song is about my grandfather Carl Joseph Koerner who was a WWII vet. When I was a kid I would ask him about his experience in WWII but he would never want to talk about it. I was 8 years old and didn’t understand why he didn’t want to talk about it so I kept asking him. One day he sat me down at his dinner table and talked to me for three hours about his wwii days. That’s an evening I will never forget. So the song is about one of the stories he told me. He was 18 years old when he was sent over to southern Germany to fight. He and 30 men were running along a riverside and they were being chased by a German battalion that outnumbered them heavily. My grandfathers company came to a fork in the river and on the right hand side a bridge crossed over the river. Grandpas sergeant stopped the 30 men and picked 5 of them to stay back at the bridge so when the German battalion caught up, this 5 would slow them down for as long as they could so the other 25 could run off and get away. My grandpa was one of those 5 chosen….he made it through and at the end of the song you find out how!
- How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words?
Fun, feel good, happy! (That’s most of my music but not Stayed Alive in 45 haha)
- What is your recording process like when making new music?
Once the song is written I’ve had a couple of different recording experiences. Early on I did a lot of layering where we would record drums and bass first, then rhythm guitars, then lead guitars, then vocals and then back ground vocals. We would record all of those pieces individually.
The last 3 song we recorded, including Stayed Alive in 45, I had the privilege to work with incredible Nashville studio musicians who came in and recorded everything at the same at Emporium. It was an incredible experience to here the song go from acoustic guitar to what it is on the recording and it all happened at once.
- What are a few of your favorite venues to play at?
Village inn on Balboa Island in Newport Beach California, rockwells in Villa Park California. Two places I’ve been playing for years!!!
A bigger venue that was amazing was Club Rodeo in Wichita Kansas when I got to open for Luke Combs in 2017.
- What do you like to do in your free time when not working on your music?
GOLF! Love everything about it! Playing it, watching it on TV, I’m in a fantasy golf league….HUGE golf nerd.
- Is there anything else you would like to share?
I just want to thank everyone who has helped me along the way and continues to do so. It takes a village to make a music career go and I am very thankful for mine!
- What is one of your favorite quotes?
“ Strength doesn’t come from winning, your struggles develops your strengths!” -Arnold Schwarzenegger