Josh Turner invites fans to join him in scaling what the charismatic performer likes to call his “Mount Rushmore of Country Music” on his new studio album “Country State of Mind,” scheduled for release Aug. 21 on MCA Nashville. The 12-song collection finds Turner in an enlightened “country state of mind” as he pays homage to a cross-section of classic country music icons, including five legends who have long held a firm place in his musical journey: Randy Travis, John Anderson, Johnny Cash, Vern Gosdin and Hank Williams.
“I’ve always said that any song you hear coming from my voice, you’re going to hear bits and pieces of those five guys,” Turner said. “They taught me how to be Josh Turner.”
Turner recently treated fans to an exclusive first look at “Country State of Mind” during a special Facebook Live session. Watch it here.
“Country State of Mind” showcases Turner as a disciple of country music history, with the album spanning more than half a century of classic country music, encompassing both well-known standards and deep-catalog cuts, many of which hold deep personal meaning. Turner also invited other stellar country voices – some heroes, some contemporaries – to join him in the studio as he crafted his celebration of classic country.
The new rendition of the Travis classic “Forever and Ever, Amen” marks Randy’s first recording session since an incapacitating 2013 stroke.
“Randy has always been my hero. He was the reason I wanted to become a country singer,” Turner said. “He’s an inspiring figure, not just to me but to a lot of people, so to have him sing on this record is pretty special.”
Early in his career, Turner often performed Gosdin’s first chart-topping single, “I Can Tell By the Way You Dance (You’re Gonna Love Me Tonight),” and has long dreamed of reintroducing it to a new generation of listeners.
He teams up with Anderson to reprise the 1993 hit “I’ve Got It Made.” Turner also plays guitar for the first time on one of his albums on his renditions of Cash’s “The Caretaker” and Williams’ “Alone and Forsaken” – the album’s oldest, and darkest, songs.
Country Music Hall of Famer Kris Kristofferson joined Turner to record a new version of his 1973 chart-topper “Why Me.” Other standout tracks include the title track, originally a 1986 hit for Hank Williams Jr., which becomes a duet with fellow Grand Ole Opry member Chris Janson; the members of Runaway June take George Jones’ part on “You Don’t Seem to Miss Me”; and Maddie & Tae sing with Turner on “Desperately,” a 2004 single for George Strait and the album’s newest song.
With his rich, deep voice and distinctive style, Turner is one of country music’s most recognizable hitmakers. Turner has scored recognition from the Grammy, CMA, ACM, GMA Dove and Inspirational Country Music awards. As one of the youngest members inducted into the Grand Ole Opry, Turner has sold more than 8.5 million units, topped more than 2.5 billion in global streaming, and populated radio with such memorable hits as “Hometown Girl,” “Would You Go With Me,” “Your Man,” “Time Is Love,” “Why Don’t We Just Dance” and “Long Black Train.”