Did You Know Chris Stapleton Was a Backup Singer for Luke Bryan?

Luke Bryan and Chris Stapleton (photo from www.soundslikenashville.com)
Luke Bryan and Chris Stapleton (photo from www.soundslikenashville.com)

I bet you didn’t know that Chris Stapleton once backed up Luke Bryan. Only the true Stapleton fans know about it.

Yep, Stapleton was a backup singer for Bryan on the latter’s song, “Drink A Beer.”

Stapleton, who recently won the Americana Music Award for Artist of the Year, was the frontman of the bluegrass band The SteelDrivers from ’07 to ’10. And he’s done his fair share of hit song making. Some of those songs were No. 1, including Kenny Chesney’s “Love’s Gonna Make It Alright” and Darius Rucker’s “Comeback Song.” 

Stapleton was the first country artist to win Album of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, and New Artist of the Year all in the same year. He was also nominated for four Grammys. 

Can you believe he sat on the mic behind Bryan, like any other backup singer? It’s true.

In the video for “Drink A Beer,” you can see a very hairy man in the background, chillin’ on a stool. You guess it right, that’s Stapleton. And I guess it’s only appropriate that he sing in the song, seeing as he co-wrote the song.

Stapleton talks about the creation of the song, and how he added a “morbid” aspect to it.

“I wrote the song with Jim Beavers and he walked into the session with the entire chorus already written,” said Stapleton. “He didn’t necessarily know what the verses should be about. Me being me, and slightly morbid sometimes, I thought maybe it should be about somebody that passed away.”

But, he says, this song is not based on real-life experiences, although Bryan was able to connect it to actual events in his own life.

“The beautiful thing about Luke Bryan recording this song is that it was written from a fictitious place,” Stapleton said. “When Luke took it on as a song that he wanted to perform, that’s when it got legs and got life, because of some of his family history and some losses he’s had…I have to credit Luke, it was a good pairing of an artist and a song. Sometimes that’s when the magic happens: when the right song gets with the right artist. That was one of those times.”

Stapleton, who’s made appearances on “Late Show with David Letterman,” “The View,” “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” has written a few other songs you may know. 

Here are a few:

  • “Love’s Gonna Make It Alright” — recorded by George Strait
  • “Keep On Lovin’ You” — recorded by Steel Magnolia
  • “Your Man” — recorded by Josh Turner

Don’t worry, though, Bryan didn’t always keep Stapleton in the dark background. Here’s a video showing the two of them playing “Drink A Beer” right next to each other:

Stapleton is touring throughout the US and into Canada through July 2017. Bryan is doing is annual Farm Tour throughout October 2016. 

Tell us — did you already know about Stapleton backing up Bryan? Did you know that Stapleton first wrote songs for other stars?