Adairs Run frontman Todd Hanchock said the title track to the band's 2016 EP "Turn Back The Miles" is where the band is headed.
"All these songs we're writing are based on some serious experiences in the last few years, or when we were growing up," said Hanchock. "For me, 'Turning Back The Miles' is just a cool way to put a spin on 'hey man, I wish I COULD turn back time.'"
Hanchock followed up with a car metaphor.
"In a relationship I was in one time, it was like if you rode 40,000 miles, she was my shotgun rider right there with me. And then we went our separate ways for awhile, and it was like that truck that went from 40,000 miles to 100,000 miles, it was a down period. You know, everybody has something they'd like to go back and change or re-live. That's what 'Turn Back The Miles' is. Can I go back in time, roll back the miles on this car that I had?" said Hanchock.
Hanchock grew up in Princeton, WV. In college, he met lead guitarist Pat Pollifrone, who hails from Salem, VA. The two played as a duo until moving to Nashville in 2012 , where they met current bassist Ian Daugherty and drummer Chad Yarger. Known as "The Jewel of the South," Hanchock characterized his hometown as a typical small country town with a few stoplights and the usual hangout spots on Friday night. It's also where his memories are fond.
"The folks around there are awesome," said Hanchock. "It's always like 'who can I help, you know, give the shirt off my back. That's the way I was raised. Everybody is your neighbor, everybody waves at everybody, it's kind of a friendly feeling."
And though would be natural to think country music would rule in a small rural West Virginia town, Hanchock said he absorbed many sounds.
"Growing up it would bounce back and forth between country and classic rock, as well as modern pop and rock. But yes, I would say the roots of most of the folks there would be in country," said Hanchock."
The "Turning Back The Miles" EP is rooted in country, but you can hear the classic rock influence. Hanchock said he and Pollifrone are the primary songwriters, but collaborate with Daugherty and Yarger, as well as outside writers. Similar to the car metaphor Hanchock he used to describe the EP's title track, "Brokedown On The Interstate," the albums opening song, mixes a past relationship with being on the road.
"I actually broke down on the interstate one time at three o'clock in the morning. And the only person I could get ahold of was the guy I co-wrote the song with. As he was picking me up, he said 'broke down on the interstate huh? That's a cool song title.' Literally the next night we went and wrote the song," said Hanchock.
One of the outside collaborators has been 2012 American Idol contestant Chris Daughtry, now of the rock band Daughtry. After Hanchock and Pollifrone had fleshed out a song Daughtry had begun but never finished, both realized it didn't fit the tone of the rest of the album. So they turned to "Wild Heart, a tune Daughtry HAD completed, but never released. It's now the final song on Adairs Run "Turning Back The Miles" EP.
"The words were super country, so we told Chris it would be real cool to cut a country version. He said 'I would love that.'"
They then approached Daughtry with "And you know what would be cool? If you would sing on it, cause I know this song is real important to you."
On April 29, Adairs Run released the single "Undefined." Click "Listen" below to hear Hanchock describe how that song is their guess on where country music is headed.
Adairs Run returns to Six Strings in downtown Bloomington May 12. Doors open at 7:00 p.m., music starts at 10:00 p.m.
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