Country Underdog got the chance to sit down and talk with Casee Allen, a talented singer and songwriter out of the small town of Coshocton, Ohio who for the past 6 years has lived in Nashville. Casee just released his E.P. "Hindsight 2020" and we are very excited about the path he is taking his new music. Casee is one of the most humble and genuine artists we have spoken to. Just one of the most humble and genuine people we have spoken to period. Casee is a hardworking father who's first full music project back in 2017 reached #31 on the Country Music Album Top 200, with his Debut EP album: “Double You”. Our interview with Casee covers his new music, family background, how he got into music, and even coming full circle by working with his childhood country music hero. We are very excited to see the success of his raw, authentic, stripped-down, and vulnerable new E.P. He called it "The key to his diary".
Hindsight 2020 E.P. Track List & Songwriters
1. “Hindsight 2020”- Casee Allen, Amber Kuntz, Todd McCall
2. “Just Some Guy From Ohio” (feat. The Swon Brothers) - Casee Allen, The Swon Brothers
3. “First Day in Nashville” - Casee Allen
4. “Sonshine” - Casee Allen, Keith Burns( from Trick Pony)
5. “Uncle Tim - Casee Allen
6. “Dear Wife” - Casee Allen
Buy on iTunes HERE
Buy on Google Play HERE
Listen on any Platform HERE
Interview With Casee
By Country Underdog founder Reed McDonald
Reed: "Casee, tell us about the songs on the E.P."
1. Hindsight 2020 - "The intro track is about what the record means to me, it's my first year I am no longer in my 20's in the year “2020”, a new decade, and my philosophy on the term “Hindsight 2020”.”
2. Just Some Guy From Ohio - "Just some guy from Ohio” is about who I am, why I am the way I am, and the first time I’ve expressed myself; musically) in a way in which I think the world could use a little more of right now.”
3. First Day in Nashville - "Well, it’s obviously not the most brilliant song title haha but it’s about my first day in Nashville...and I promise you that there’s good reason in why I wrote this song. My “First Day in Nashville” was unlike any you’ve ever heard!”
4. Sonshine - "Is a song about the greatest day of my life, period.”
5. Uncle Tim - "Is about my hero, and my best friend. He deserves a heck of a lot more than just a song, but I think everybody needs at least a person in their life like him. That’s what this song is all about, and I hope it reminds people to be a ray of light for one another. Knowing that someone is always watching them, no matter the age.”
6. Dear Wife - "Was written the same week I had to submit the record for distribution. I basically wrote a letter to my future wife, giving a heads up before she gets into this mess haha. And it is actually a phone voice recording from the day I wrote the song, and I submitted it that way."
Reed: "Are there any songs you’re going to push as a single?"
Casee: “You know what? I thought let’s just put this thing out and see what people think, and see what song people tend to naturally gravitate towards. I'm interested to see what people really like. So if I'm being honest: no, not really”.
Reed: "Growing up in Ohio, how did family and external influences shape your country music?"
Casee: “The last thing on earth I thought I would become was a recording artist, I never wanted to do it. Everyone in my family had the dream at some point in their lives, but it was never taken to that level, the extra mile that it takes wasn’t put in. Singing was something you really loved to do but the extra effort wasn't always there. My dad went from singing country, to singing blues, then to being a singer-songwriter, my mom & stepdad sang in a local cover band, and i also had 1 uncle & 1 aunt who sang locally growing up. Music is definitely something I was raised on, in more ways than 1. It was/is a huge part of my personal life, more than anything else. Music is my therapy, It’s the way I express myself.”
Reed: "Who else do you credit when it comes to shaping you as a person and artist?"
Casee: "First and foremost, God. Second, my “Uncle Tim”. Third, is a guy that I give a ton of credit to: Mr. Neal McCoy (known predominantly for his songs like“The Shake”, “Billy’s got his beer goggles on”, and "Wink").
When I was just 8 years old, I was going through an extremely difficult time at home. So...This guy called my school! Called me out of class over the loudspeaker. It had nothing to do with music, he knew I looked up to him and just wanted to shed some bright light in my time of darkness. Let’s just say I didn't have the best childhood. But fortunately, I had an amazing teacher who cared, and somehow found a way to contact him and set this up. It’s a day I’ll never forget. A simple phone call, a few simple words, and a couple of CD’s helped changed my outlook on life as a young boy.
"Just after deciding to move to Nashville & just before actually moving there, my band and I were watching Neal perform at a festival in Ohio. We hadn't talked in several years, and I wanted to shake his hand and basically just thank him as a grown man. Oh, and let him know that I was taking a shot at the music industry! Haha, so I stood outside of his band's bus so they couldn’t leave. The only way they could leave was to run my ass over.
Reed: "What did you do next?"
Casee: "I handed his security detail the newspaper article from when he called me at school, back in 1998...he sent it back out with an autograph.
So I then sent it back in and said: “I don't want his autograph, I want him to know that the messed up little boy he talked to, is now a grown man and I want to thank him personally.” That I’m still messed up (haha), but just a cleaner mess now haha. He comes back out in basically pajamas and obviously just learned that it was me as a grown adult. I let him know that I just moved to Nashville, and he said "Is there any way I can talk you out of it? That's just such a tough town!” I said “Nope, one day you’ll hear my name come out of your bus speakers, followed by a song. And someday soon, I hope that we share a stage together, I think it’ll happen.”
Reed: "Wow man that is amazing...to come full circle like that!”
Casee: "it actually gets better than that even!
So...2 years ago I opened up for Neal, and then performed on stage with him!”
“Since then, he's become one of my mentors. Neal and I collectively have a really exciting 2020 coming, can't leak the details yet though..."
Reed: "How did you finally end up playing music since it was never a big dream?"
Casee: "Well it’s kinda funny, actually. After high school, I was Cagefighting, going to school, coaching wrestling, and selling cars for a living. In the midst of it all, I got dumped for the first time, by the girl I had always figured I’d someday marry. So after I hung it up with fighting, I had to find another avenue to release my pain: Around a bonfire in “Uncle Tim’s” backyard, learning to play/sing songs with my brother. Next thing I knew, we were playing at bigger and bigger shows. Just a year later, we had got the opportunity to do a show with Kip Moore, performing on a patio in front of the big stage, just before he took the big stage.
After the show that night, I asked him for a piece of advice: “ya gotta move to Nashville ASAP & bust that ass!”.
I thought “Nah man, I gotta finish college, and I have a life I’m building here in Ohio.”
And Kip(thankfully), basically thought I was dumbass, haha, so I ended up leaving for Nashville (within hours) to visit for the very first time!”
Reed: "When you made your move to Nashville tell us about the journey: How did it make you feel with, everything happening so quickly?”
Casee: "My very first night in Nashville I scored a full-time gig with Tootsies Orchid Lounge and Honky-Tonk Central, performing 6 / sometimes 7 nights a week. From there I moved on to a few more venues on broadway, before we started to get a lot of tour dates & gain some traction."
"I still perform in Nashville when we aren’t on the road, most of the time recently it’s been at Blake Shelton’s “Ole Red”.
Reed: "What's a dream venue you would want to play at in 2020?"
Casee: "I’ve got some lofty goals, but they’ve never really included too many specific venues: I’d say the “Grand Ole Opry” or “The Ryman Auditorium” would be the up at the top for me though.”
Reed: "With us being based out of Texas, we have to ask: What do you think about playing in the Texas Market?"
Casee: "I have a pretty decent following in parts of Texas, but y’all are like an entirely separate country in ways! One time in Texas I decided to take songs around to radio stations to see what they thought. I would get so much love at one station and then “You call this country” at another. Haha, it’s an interesting market, but that’s why I love it.”
Reed: “What separates you from any other artist? What makes you different?”
Casee: "What separates me from any artist I’ve ever met? That’s easy, the fact that I have full custody of my 6-year-old son Jace, and play the roles of both his father & his mother... I don’t get to have the 3-4 roommates and live on next to nothing if I had to like a lot of folks are able to do, lucky dogs haha. I forced myself to build a real business from it, early on, that would bring in enough to comfortably raise my son & give him a life that I only dreamed of having as a child. So far, it’s worked, thank God!”
Reed: "Any memorable stories that you have had in your career?"
Casee: "Good or bad? Hahaha"
"Honestly, I’ve opened up for just about every major act in the industry that I would ever want to open up for, minus a few played huge festivals and all kinds of amazing shows. But, the most exciting crazy story... Would have to be getting the call to come out to Texas to open up for Neal McCoy. To me, nothing beats that, it's who I looked up to as a kid. It was a dream come true. Of course, I have other things I loom to accomplish, but It was just so great to look him into the eyes and say “Told ya you’d be seeing me again, soon!” Haha Then from there, to being able to just call him “friend”, to be able to pick up the phone at any given moment and ask him anything. That’s what it’s all about, and I never take it for granted. He’s the example that I want to set for my son and artists who may someday look up to me. But If you would've told 8-year-old casee that I would someday call Neal McCoy a “friend”, I would say you're out of your damn mind. Haha”
Reed: “Anything else you’d like to add”
Casee: “Yes, download my EP Album, “Hindsight 2020”! Haha, and thank you for having me, and for supporting a “Country Underdog” like myself!
God bless y’all, and God bless country music fans!”
Buy on iTunes HERE
Buy on Google Play HERE
Listen to the E.P. HERE