WALKING THE LINE: AN INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS STAPLETON. Chris Stapleton is one of those guys that has been around for long enough that, even if you don't think you know his music, you probably do. As a songwriter, he's had a bunch of cuts and a handful of hits, courtesy of artists like Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan, and George Strait. As a band man, he spent some years in the SteelDrivers and some more years in the Jompson Brothers. Now, as a solo artist, Stapleton has debuted in the number two seat on the country album chart with Traveller
, a set of “gritty narratives
of grim determination and aching love, presented with courage and candor.” Stapleton's soulfully rocking take on country music sidles up alongside Tim McGraw as naturally as it does Sturgill Simpson and Willie Nelson, carving out a middle ground that may well suit the mainstreamers, the upstarts, and the outlaws, alike.