Kristian Bush Lights It Up !

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Submitted by Don Graham

Kristian Bush is not exactly a household name, yet, but when you mention Sugarland the common response is “Oh yeah, I know who he is. Does he sing?”  Sitting across a table from Kristian you get a sense of a man who’s very comfortable in his own skin and confident in his craft and ability. “With Sugarland, the beautiful and talented Jennifer Nettles was the  lead singer and focal point. I was onstage doing what I do and off stage taking care of business. It was, and is, a great team. The cool thing now when an audience sees me for the first time they’re all wondering’ Can he sing? And yes, Kristian Bush has a voice to go along with his superb musicianship and songwriting skills, and he is ready for you to hear it.

Bush  released his debut solo album Southern Gravity in April and his voice is radio friendly and distinct.

The album is  an inspirational album, born out of an event clouded in tragedy when in 2011 the stage rigging collapsed during a storm just before  Sugarland's show at the Indiana State Fair. The horror of that collapse and the loss of life involved helped Bush reevaluate some things in his life, “Not long ago I got the pieces of my old Gibson mandolin shipped back to  in Atlanta. It was sad to see this irreplaceable instrument in that state but when I left the room and came back in my daughter had arranged the pieces in the shape of a peace sign. Ok, now it all makes sense. I lost an instrument, some folks lost their lives.”

The 12 tracks on Southern Gravity are Kristian's musical way of saying that everything is going to be okay."These songs are like post-it notes that you might put around your house as inspirational reminders," says Kristian. "I listen to them for that reason sometimes to remind myself that no matter how hard it gets, you can make things out of the pieces that are smashed."

Kristian has a knack for writing country-pop songs and  Country Weekly calls the album, “the feel-good album of the year.” The lead single, "Trailer Hitch," became a top 20 song and the follow  "Light Me Up," celebrates the joy of love.

"Music sometimes looks back, and that's what most of us do. But this album is all present tense. It's not, I was feeling fine, it's I am feeling fine. It isn't you did light me up, it's you do light me up. It's all happening here," Kristian says. "And I needed to hear that as much as anyone else."

Kristian BushKristian Bush"I chose these songs to communicate with as many people as I can. Country radio has an incredible reach and is such a powerful thing. It is unprecedented in our culture. I want to be on the radio because I want people I don't know to hear my music. I've been pestering the ones I do know for years — it's the stranger that I'm interested in.”

Kristian has a distinct advantage as he launches his solo career. He’s considered a new artist but has already had success with two other bands so his learning curve is a little different for other new artists. “I’ve already been there with Billy Pilgrim and on a larger scale with Sugarland. My live show has a repertoire from two bands and my own stuff to draw from and that makes it a lot of fun for me and the crowd. I’m lovin’ every minute, every note of every song.”

Bush was born in Sevierville, Tennessee, a small town at the base of the Smoky Mountains that is also well known as  the hometown of Dolly Parton.

It was with his band Billy Pilgrim that he relocated to Atlanta and in 2002 formed Sugarland with Jennifer Nettles and in 2004 tore up the charts with the single “Baby Girl.” The group has sold over 22 million albums worldwide, had five No. 1 singles and won numerous awards, including trophies from the Grammys, American Music Awards, Academy of Country Music Awards, CMT Music Awardsand CMA Awards. In October of 2012, they were inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. Kristian has 6 BMI Awards to his credit as well.

The summer of 2015 has seen Kristian Bush embark on a monster tour, going across the country and up in Canada. playing to huge appreciative crowds and gaining thousands of new fans. He has gone from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine and beyond and always given the crowd what they came for and more.

“I am truly blessed to do what I do and take none of it for granted. You have to appreciate all that you’re given in this world and let nothing pass you by.”

May Kristian Bush continue to “light it up.”